A motorist facing criminal charges following the death of a pedestrian on one of Cumbria's main roads has appeared in court.

Matthew Paul Leggett, 24, was present for a short hearing in front of District Judge Gerald Chalk at Carlisle Magistrates' Court this morning.

Leggett, of Brigham Road, Cockermouth, faces three charges. These have been brought following a collision on the A66 at Braithwaite, near Keswick, in the early hours of April 7 this year.

This involved a BMW 1 series and a pedestrian, 61-year-old James Greenwood, who died following the collision.

These three charges allege dangerous driving, failing to stop after an accident involving Mr Greenwood, and also failing to report that accident to police within 24 hours.

Peter Kelly, prosecuting, told the court: "The backdrop of this case is the tragic death of Mr James Greenwood."

It was stressed Leggett faced no charge in relation to the actual collision involving the BMW and Mr Greenwood, who was from Market Drayton, Shropshire.

It was alleged, however, that Leggett had failed to stop; that he had allegedly driven dangerously, for 12 miles - on the A66, A591, B5291, Peil Wyke, Castle Inn, Long Bottom and Setmurthy Woods - when it was said the BMW was damaged; and that he had failed to report the accident to police.

Leggett's lawyer, David Thompson, said no indication of pleas to any of the charges faced by the defendant was being given at this stage.

District Judge Chalk concluded: "I take the view this case is more appropriately dealt with at the crown court."

Leggett - dressed in a blue suit - spoke during the hearing to confirm his name, date of birth, address and nationality. He was told he is due to appear at Carlisle Crown Court on the morning of January 14.

In the meantime he was granted bail by the district judge.

*In a tribute released after Mr Greenwood's death, his relatives described him in a statement as "a keen biker who had a larger than life personality, with family and friends at the centre of everything he did".

"His death has left a hole in our family that will never be filled," they added.