Things to do in the Northern Lakes this September…
Summer is now drawing to a close in the Northern Lakes, but there’s still so much to do! Join us this autumn and enjoy the best of the Lakes. Walk our fells, sail our lakes and enjoy everything the area has to offer…
Right on our doorstep there are dozens of events and activities for you get involved with during your stay at Underscar. Here are some highlights we’ve picked out. For a comprehensive list of what’s on in Keswick and the surrounding area this month please visit: www.keswick.org/whats-on/events
This major new exhibition is guest curated by historian, farmer and winner of the 2017 Wainwright Prize for nature writing John Lewis Stempel. Where Poppies Blow commemorates the end of the First Word War, by celebrating the role of the natural world in sustaining Britain’s troops through the horrors of trench warfare. A first set of evocative exhibits will be on display from 10 March to 8 July, with a second set from 16 July to 28 October.
Price: free with admission to house and garden (adult £8.80, child £4.40, family £22, National Trust members free)
Wordsworth House and Garden
Main Street, Cockermouth,
Join a 30-minute guided house tour and enjoy a personal insight into the family life that forged one of our greatest poets – plus the story of how this special house was saved from demolition.
Price: Free for NT members
Keswick has another history full of murder, intrigue and tortured souls. From slate built houses to the surrounding lakes and fells this is an area steeped in legend and mystery. Follow “The Lady”… if you dare.
The walk starts and ends at The Moot Hall, Keswick, CA12 5JR. All tickets must be booked in advance. Please arrive early as all outstanding payments must be completed before the start of the walk. There are no facilities en route so you may be advised to visit the rest room before the walk.
Keswick Ghost Walks are written with an adult audience in mind but are broadly accessible to children 10 years and above. Please ensure that children are suitably clothed for the conditions.
Price: £10 adults, £8 concessions
The Moot Hall,
Keswick, CA12 5JR
John Scott, Management Plan Coordinator of Hadrian’s Wall talks about the role UNESCO sees for this list of special places.
Station Road, Keswick, Cumbria,
A stroll through Fitz Park and Keswick Town Centre to discover something of Keswick’s fascinating heritage.
Part of the Museum’s Heritage Open Days.
Station Road, Keswick, Cumbria,
Accessible only by foot, bike or National Trust 4×4, discover one of the Lakes most quirky yet fascinating secrets located in the stunning Coledale Valley, near Keswick – you’ll love it even if you’re not sure mining is quite your thing!
Missed by most people, the last mineral mine to be worked in the Lake District has been lovingly restored and cared for by volunteers. A guided tour allows you to explore the above-ground processing mill and associated remains – it’s as if the miners had just left for the day.
Once a hive of industry, the mining of lead, zinc and barites took place at Force Crag for over 200 years, ceasing in 1990. History, engineering, geology, archaeology and an awesome setting, Force Crag Mine has it all.
Price: £6 (inc. NT members)
Head of the Coledale Valley
Keswick, CA12 5SY
One of cyclewise’s most popular mountain bike skills courses and the most important MTB skills you can ever learn when it comes to mountain biking. Become a better rider, bursting with confidence, new techniques and the control to handle the most difficult of terrain with ease.
A talk by author and historian Kathleen Jones offering a fascinating glimpse into the world of the women who inspired and adored the Romantic poets.
Phil Bradley, Cumbria’s master willow weaver, has been responsible for creating several life size sheep in a number of secret locations around the north of England and we have finally persuaded him to take a class here.
The group size will be smaller, it may be a bit of a longer day – perhaps until 16.30 or 17.00 and the material costs a little higher. However, by the afternoon, you will have created something quite unique that will without a doubt be a fraction of what Phil charges for the same.
Price: Sheep – Adult £85, including coffees, teas, home-made cakes, biscuits and a wholesome 2-course lunch. Hens – £78 inc lunch etc
Greystoke Cycle Cafe
The Lakes Distillery Autumn Whisky Festival is a great day out for all the family. Discover the distillery by coming on a Lakes Distillery tour. Uncover the magic behind the whisky making process and taste the latest in the Distillery’s portfolio. Enjoy live music outside in the beautiful courtyard, or eat in the Bistro where you can enjoy fine dining with an a la carte menu. The friendly herd of Alpacas from Alpacaly Ever After will be making an appearance walking around the courtyard too.
Walkers will head to the hills to take on five family-sized mountains in five hours to raise money for research into Multiple Sclerosis. The route is about eight miles long and takes in five peaks – Causey Pike (637m), Scar Crags (672m), Outerside (568m), Stile End (447m) and Barrow (455m). It is an achievable challenge for an active family. The adults need to be able to navigate their way along the route and carry a map and compass.
Price: £10 plus group fee of £20
Walk starts and ends at The Swinside Inn
Festivals and Events 2018
From February through to December there is something going on in Keswick, including:
Keswick Film Club shows films regularly at the Keswick Alhambra throughout the year.
It was formed in December 1988, and produced its first short season of 10 films in the period February-April 1999. Based at the Alhambra Cinema in St John’s Street, the Club is run by a group of enthusiasts who try to bring to the people of Keswick and the surrounding area the best of British and World cinema: high quality, thought-provoking films which are often not given a screening in the local cinemas.
The Film Club runs its season of films from late September through to Easter, usually at 5pm on a Sunday evening at the Alhambra. In 2000 the Film Club organised the First Keswick Film Festival in association with the town’s Theatre By The Lake and due to its success the festival has been run every year since.
For more information please visit the Film Club website www.keswickfilmclub.org.
Alhambra Cinema, St John’s Street, Keswick, CA12 5AG.
Theatre by the Lake in Keswick, Cumbria is the venue for this exciting literature festival organised by Ways With Words. For 10 days writers and readers get together to share the pleasure of books, words and ideas. Theatre by the Lake, sited right on the edge of Derwentwater is a striking venue. There are talks, lectures, discussions, workshops, book launches and special exhibitions.
The Words by the Water Festival at Theatre by the Lake in Keswick is the north-west of England’s premier festival of words and ideas. Although the festival can’t summon Wordsworth and Coleridge to take part in their programme, there are many other literary folk coming to the Lake District in March 2018.
Theatre by the Lake, Lakeside, Keswick, CA12 5DJ.
Keswick Half Marathon is said to be one of the most scenic half marathons in the country.
The race was set up by Keswick Rugby Club in order to raise funds for the club and the youth coaching program. We are one of only a handfull of small clubs in the country to have a full time rugby development officer who spends the majority of his time in the local schools. The half marathon is one of the events that helps to fund this coaching program so your support is greatly appreciated.
Come and take part in this very popular annual event. The route is a circuit of Derwentwater, with a loop into the Newlands valley, probably the most scenic 13 miles 192.5 yards in the country.
On the race day there is a fun run for the young ones. A short course, just for fun!
A four-day celebration of the best of New Orleans, Swing, Hot Club, Classic, Traditional, Mainstream Jazz and Blues in Keswick – Lots of Keswick Jazz Festival favourites and some great new additions.
This year’s Festival will bring music from days of jazz when it began – Jelly Roll Morton, Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, and from the glory days of traditional jazz in the UK, to the fat and hip-swinging music of New Orleans, intimate gypsy jazz, soulful gospel and blues, powerful and inspiring vocalists, hot pianists, cool saxophones, trumpets, trombones, banjos, clarinets… the list goes on.
Unlike many festivals the Keswick Jazz and Blues Festival takes place in numerous venues in and around the town for which a valid ticket gives access to them all. Pick your favourite style, entertainer or location and head over for some fun, no separate booking required, just mix and match as you see fit.
A dance floor will be laid in at least one venue where the bands will play for dancing, and dance tutors will run classes in the morning for beginners and intermediates.
Lots to see, lots to do and all set in the beautiful surroundings of Keswick, in the heart of the Lake District.
For more information please see keswickjazzandbluesfestival.co.uk
The 2018 Beer Festival will be the 22nd Festival – growing from humble beginnings in 1997 into an event attracting nearly 6,000 Beer enthusiasts over two days. The Festival itself is always held on the first weekend in June.
The Biggest Beer Festival in the North -170 Real Ales plus bottled beers and ciders.
This event sells out each year. You must buy your tickets in advance. Admission by advance wristband only. No ticket sales on the day.
Keswick Mountain Festival takes place in the heart of the Lake District.
The Festival programme is made up of guided activities including MTB biking, hiking, canoeing, navigation training, ghyll scrambling, climbing and so much more, to be enjoyed with friends and family. There is also a fantastic line-up of challenging sporting events including Triathlons, Trail Races, Open water swims and a Sportive.
All topped off with an incredible selection of kids activities, local food stalls, exhibitors, camping, live music and spectacular views.
Keswick Ministries organise the annual Keswick Christian Convention which has been taking place since 1875. It offers something for everyone – life-changing Bible teaching, worship and fellowship, with separate Kids and Youth programmes (ages 3-18), all combined with the chance to relax and enjoy the wonder of the Lake District.
Keswick Agricultural Society was founded in 1860, being one of the oldest Societies in Keswick, and is held every August Bank Holiday Monday.
At the show you can see:
• Cattle, Ponies, Horses, Sheep, Dogs & Poultry
• Industrial Marquee for Home produce
• Cumberland & Westmorland Wrestling
• Fell races
• Art & Craft Marquee
• Children’s amusements
• Vintage Display by the West Cumbria Vintage Club
• Plus 60+ tradestands
Free parking next to the show field and free shuttle bus from Keswick throughout the day.
Theatre by the Lake
Theatre by the Lake 2018 programme of events:
The summer productions are Jeeves and Wooster in Perfect Nonsense, Single Spies and Sense and Sensibility, presented in the Main House, with Rails and Bold Girls in the Studio.
“Man and boy, Jeeves, I have been in some tough spots in my time, but this one wins the mottled oyster”
Join aristocratic man about town Bertie Wooster and his dutiful valet Jeeves for a weekend away at a country house. When Wooster is called on to play matchmaker and inadvertently steals an antique silver cow-creamer (don’t ask), the ever dependable Jeeves is on hand to step in and save Bertie’s bacon.
Three actors play a multitude of characters in this inventive and totally bonkers send-up of P.G. Wodehouse’s iconic double act, which won the 2014 Olivier Award for Best New Comedy.
Prices: £10 – £36
Mike is a 16 year old who’s really into his scooter. He’s really into Sarah too. But she’s probably not that into him. His brother Ben is stuck working in a petrol station and dreams of escape and their mum can’t seem to speak anymore. Cars are passing through the dead end town they live in, but they don’t ever stop.
One summer, with the temperature rising and the town sweltering in the grip of a heat wave, their lives collide and something, anything, has to break.
Simon Longman’s funny, poignant and emotionally arresting new play was shortlisted for the 2015 Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting. Beautifully written and acutely observed, Rails is a play about loneliness, dreaming and trying to hope in a town that doesn’t seem to want you to.
Prices: £12.50 – £26
Alan Bennett’s Olivier Award winning comedy masterpiece uncovers the true stories behind two notorious spies.
Guy Burgess and Anthony Blunt were members of the infamous Cambridge Spies. This compelling double bill, set in both Moscow and London, chronicles their extraordinary lives: secret identities, police interrogations, and encounters with the Queen.
In An Englishman Abroad, double agent Guy Burgess has defected to the Soviets and is living in Moscow. But when he’s visited by the actress Coral Browne, Burgess entrusts her with a top secret mission of her own.
As A Question of Attribution shows, there was nobody Sir Anthony Blunt didn’t know. As Surveyor of the Queen’s Pictures, he was on friendly terms with Her Majesty. But with an art forgery on his hands and a policeman in his office, Blunt’s latest trip to Buckingham Palace is looking awkward…
These witty comedies are as fascinating as they are funny.
Prices: £10 – £36
It’s 1991 in West Belfast. With their husbands either locked up or killed, Marie, Cassie and Nora are just trying to get on with their lives, despite the bombs, burning buses and soldiers trampling the flower beds. Life must go on – after all, there’s still laundry to do and kids to feed.
But when a mysterious young woman turns up on Marie’s doorstep and disrupts their girls’ night out, the devastating revelations which ensue will shatter dreams and threaten their friendship irrevocably.
Sharply funny, moving, yet never shying from the harsh realities of life during The Troubles, the award-winning Bold Girls announced Rona Munro as one of the best playwrights of her generation in this celebration of women’s strength under siege.
Prices: £12.50 – £26.00
Things look bleak for sisters Marianne and Elinor Dashwood when they find themselves cheated out of their inheritance and turfed out of their home with little money to live on and even less to recommend themselves to suitors.
Banished to a chilly cottage in Devonshire, the arrival of a dashing stranger promises to change their fortunes forever; but as the sisters each discover, the course of true love never did run smooth.
Austen’s razor-sharp wit sizzles in this beloved tale of injustice, heartbreak and love in an adaptation that is as fresh as it is funny from Olivier Award-winning writer Jessica Swale.
Prices: £10 – £36
This band have been crowned North of England Brass Band Champions 36 times and are listed in the top 20 of the World Brass Band rankings. Not only have the band cemented a formidable reputation in competitions, they’ve garnered a reputation for their high quality concerts of new original music, alongside the more traditional brass band repertoire.
Prices: £10 – £15
Join acclaimed author Marian Veevers as she discusses her enlightening book telling the story of Jane Austen and Dorothy Wordsworth. Whilst the two never met, they had much in common, as well as many things to set them apart. Born in the 1770s in Georgian England, both were supremely gifted writers and influenced by Romantic ideals, yet suffered the frustrations of talented women of their age who had no independent income. Join us as we debunk the enduring myths and delve deeper into the fascinating lives of these two extraordinary women.
A dazzling fanfare to open the new season of concerts – the brilliant ensemble Septura unites seven of the best from the new generation of London’s leading brass players. Subtle, expressive, and already called ‘the Magnificent Seven’, Septura celebrates the musical and political highpoint of the intertwined histories of England and France with trumpets, trombones and tubas, playing Josquin and Purcell to Debussy and Vaughan Williams.
Prices: £4 – £24
Visit http://www.theatrebythelake.com/whats-on for tickets.
Brockhole on Windermere
A great family-focused centre with fun and activities suitable for all the family including Archery, Laser Clay Shooting, Brave the Cave, Circus Skills, Go Wild Crafts and FREE adventure playground and Cubby Hole soft play area.
They have a superb year-round programme of events. Here’s just some of what’s on offer this August.
For the adults…
A gentle walk along quiet lanes to Troutbeck, followed by a steep climb up to Wansfell Pike, a Wainwright summit, before returning to Brockhole. Enjoy splendid views over Ambleside, Rydal Water and beyond.
- Starts from: Brockhole on Windermere at 1:15 pm
- Postcode: LA23 1LJ
- Length: 12.8 km, 7.9 miles
- Total ascent: 580 m, 1902 ft (cumulative height from start point to finish point)
- Duration: 6.0 hours
- Grade: Hard
Price: £10 adults
Join a guided tour around Brockhole’s Mawson gardens and get an insight into its history, plants and seasonal highlights.
Your adventure starts on the unique bike boat from Brockhole to Windermere’s western shore. A unique opportunity to enjoy a sail on the lake and explore Windermere by bike. You will be led by trained volunteer cycle leaders.
You’ll be guided along delightful traffic-free trails to secluded Blelham Tarn – an ideal picnic stop. On return there’s a visit to Wray Castle where Beatrix Potter holidayed as a child. Explore the extensive grounds or relax in the café before heading back for the return sail.
- Grade: Easy – this ride is ideal for active families and is set at a steady pace. Traffic free, except for a short section of minor road.
- Length: (5 miles) five hours
Please bring warm, waterproof clothing, gloves and trainers or cycling shoes, something to eat and drink and sunscreen (in a small rucksack).
Book your place
Tickets include bike hire and the Bike Boat. Adult and children’s bikes are available for hire. Minimum age 8 or if under 5 they should be in an approved trailer or tag-along. All under 16’s must be accompanied by a responsible adult.
To book your place, please call the Brockhole Lakeshore team on 07919 881 622.
Price: £25 adults, £20 children
A family festival where you’ll be able to ride the safe 1km off-road Lake Shore trail, experiencing the wonderful landscape and the facilities at Brockhole. You can also cruise and cycle across Lake Windermere on the unique Bike Boat and join one of three guided rides to explore trails on the hidden side of the lake.
For full event listings visit: www.brockhole.co.uk/whats-on/