Taking place over three days in October 14 – 16, the Lakes International Comic Art Festival is the only event of its kind in the UK gaining more and more critical acclaim every year. 2016 will be the fourth festival and the biggest yet.
2016 has been a huge year for Cumbria and the Lake District with celebrations up and down the county to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Beatrix Potter. The Lakes Conic Art fest is also taking part through the competition “Beatrix Potter Reimagined”. This exiting competition which closed on September 1st was open to all students of the arts to reimagine the characters, tales or artwork of Beatrix Potter by giving it a modern or unusual twist in a comic art style. The winners have been selected and the works are most definitely going to be one of the highlights of the festival.
Over the three days and in various locations around Kendal will be both free and ticketed events with something for any age. Gain insights into comic artists working, take part in workshops and demonstrations or look around the many pop up art venues across the town.
View and download the full programme of events via the festival website here, http://www.comicartfestival.com/about/.
Looking for accommodation? The Riverside Hotel in Kendal has parking, offers good value for money rooms and is close to the train station. It also has a bar and restaurant and is just a 2 minute walk into the centre of Kendal.
The Cuckoo Brow Inn at Far Sawrey has had a tremendously busy summer and it seems their customers and guests have been busy too, giving 5 star excellemt ratings and glowing reviews on Tripadvisor.
Just 3 more 5 star reviews will take this traditional Lake District inn to s staggering 550 first class reviews. “Friendly”, “welcoming”, “great food”, “lovely staff” are just some of the review headlines.
The Cuckoo Brow Inn continues its growth in popularity and guest numbers year on year since its change of ownership and refurbishment. The Inn has a lot to live up to due to its location in the peaceful and stunningly beautiful village of Far Sawrey, the once home of Beatrix Potter and where her house can still be visited owned and maintained by the National Trust. Nearby Hawkshead is a typical and true Lake District village offering plenty to see and do but what brings so many to stay at the Cuckoo Brow is the walking of the many fells surrounding the Inn.
Cuckoo Brows approach of Muddy boots, children and dogs welcome has created a relaxed atmosphere yet they have combined it with first class service, decor and food. Only the very best, local produce is used with traditional dishes, some given a little twist, but all delicious. The local real ales on offer are always a hit whether dropping in for a drink post walk or whilst staying over in one of 14 refurbished bedrooms. All en-suite, twin, double and family rooms are available.
For accommodation availability and all the information regarding bar, food and rooms at The Cuckoo Brow Lake District B&B visit http://www.cuckoobrow.co.uk
During October and organised and led by Cumbria Wildlife Trust are two Conservation Work Parties in the Grange over Sands area. The work parties held throughout Cumbria offer the chance to be educated and learn about each special location whilst at the same time helping to save and conserve rare species and habitats within it.
Firstly on Thursday October 6th the location is Brown Robin Nature Reserve. Brown Robin is a very special site with superb views of Morecambe Bay. Within the reserve you’ll be rewarded with fungi, sites of geological and historical interest, spring flowers and wildflowers and the spectacular view. From 9.30 am until 4pm those attending the work party will have the chance of experiencing various tasks including coppicing at this varied nature reserve above Grange-over-Sands learning some traditional forest management techniques.
Before winter arrives then it’s really worth doing one or all of the Morecambe Bay Partnership Seldom Seen walks. A set of 5 maps has been developed by Barrow-based artists Art Gene covering Morecambe Bay, to help you explore from Walney Island near Barrow-in-Furness in South Cumbria, all around the estuaries to Cockerham, south of Lancaster in north Lancashire. The Flookburgh to Humphrey Head is of particular interest and great when staying in Gramge over Sands. Uncover ancient sites, explore the fishing and shipbuilding heritage and immerse yourself in this unique corner of Britain and especially the compelling landscape.
Bay Villa bed and breakfast in Grange over Sands makes for a relaxing place to unwind after enjoyable but also packed days of conservation or walking. The breakfast will certainly set guests up for a full day out. Rooms start from £125.
If you missed celebrating the 150th anniversary of Beatrix Potter during the summer then it’s still not too late to do so in and around Windermere.
Hill Top, her home for so many years and now owned and maintained by The National Trust are continuing the 150th celebrations with the exclusive after hours Hill Top Showcase Tours and day Garden Tours taking place during October. The garden and shop are open daily throughout the whole year with the house closing for the winter on October 30th and also every Friday. Visit https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/hill-top for more details and to book.
Moving onto the Old Laundry Theatre in Bowness and “Meeting Bea” a theatre production by Eric Pringle is on daily from September 16th until October 9th; after ‘Miss Potter’… Meeting Bea … a new life… a new love… two uninvited guests shatter her peace. Beatrix Potter, now Mrs William Heelis.
Also at the Old Laundry Theatre on October 30 is the Beatrix Potter Magic Lantern Show with Afternoon Tea. Enjoy an exquisite traditional afternoon tea, and join Beatrix Potter as she educates, entertains and enthrals us with her Victorian “Magic-Lantern Show. Tickets should be booked in advance, £14 for adults, £10 for children via http://www.oldlaundrytheatre.co.uk/.
Every day except Christmas there’s also the World of Beatrix Potter Attraction in Bowness which is worth walking around for any Beatrix Potter fan but definitely a fun filled experience for children. Looking ahead to half term and look out for special events going on there.
Windermere is really geared up for families with so much to see and do, boredom is not a factor. Both Windermere and Bowness have an array of places to eat catering for just about all tastes from Italian to Thai and Greek and even British!
Where to stay?
The Newby Bridge Hotel in the Lake District at the southern end of Lake Windermere is family friendly, offers great value for money accommodation and serves tasty food.
If the thought of the short days and cold weather is filling you full of dread as we approach winter, fear not, the luxury brimstone Hotel on the Langdale Estate is just the antidote to all of those worries.
Brimstone Hotel on The Langdale Estate offer a superb year round offer, 20% off all room rates if booked 30 days or more in advance in order to feel warm, soothed and relaxed and ready to take on winter. This equates to these luxury rooms starting at a very reasonable £240 per night which includes breakfast, access to The Reading Room (full of complimentary food and drink goodies to enjoy during the stay) and use of the Berghaus boot room.
The spacious rooms are spaces where hours can be enjoyed. Intelligent lighting and heating ensures that no matter what the weather is like outside, the climate and ambiance is just right. If it’s really nippy the real log fire can be lit. Step outside onto the vast, private balcony to take in some fresh, Lake District air and before too long be out on the fells kitted out from head to toe in the latest, free to borrow, Berghaus walking kit from the Brimstone Berghaus Bootroom.
Stove the brand new dining experience on the Langdale Estate is the place for great food and drinks, all day, every day. Choose to have breakfast there or have it in the comfort of the Brimstone suite.
With a reputation for relaxed luxury with minimum disturbance, Brimstone Hotel can only be booked direct. For full details and availability visit https://www.brimstonehotel.co.uk or call 015394 38062.
This new property has the grandeur expected for a luxury, 5 star holiday property yet with the modern design, fixtures, fittings that suit today’s Lake District self catering guests.
The West Wing of Summer Hill House is luxury personified offering accommodation for up to eight people fusing modern with period in a show stopping restoration and development. The exterior wows as much as the interior with extensive, communal landscaped gardens as well as a private garden just for Summer Hill guests.
The location of the quiet and peaceful Spark Bridge, perfectly situated for exploring Coniston Water, Lake Windermere but so too the pretty South Cumbria villages such as Cartmel. Just a short walk from Summer Hill are two lovely village pubs both serving local real ales and food daily. There are walks right from the property but a 10 minute drive will take guests to the southern tip of Coniston Water.
Very accessible from the motorway for travelling to and from, it is just half an hour from Junction 36 of the M6.
Our tip: This would make the ideal place to spend Christmas in luxury with friends or family and it’s available too for a week break starting December 21st.
To check availability for Summer Hill, to book and for full details visit, https://www.lakeland-cottage-company.co.uk/lake-district-cottage/summer_hill.
We are in the midst of experiencing the hottest September on record with dry, above average weather looking to continue further for the next few days. Early autumn is one of the best times of the year to visit the Lake District for a relaxing break after the school summer holidays yet still with some length to the days.
Although the British weather can be unpredictable no matter what time of the year it is, September into early October gives the chance for long days outdoors enjoying the Lake District fells for walking, cycling, sailing and even alternative ways of driving thanks to electric car hire.
Electric car hire but with a different o many, a Renault Twizy. Small, compact, perfect for two and the best way in which to travel along the multitude of mountain passes in the Lake District. These vehicles enable visitors staying in the south and central Lake District to visit the Western Lakes taking in Wrynose and Hardknott Passes. Renault Twizy’s can be hired from the Langdale Hotel and are just the best form of travel over these narrow passes. Head over these historic roads and reach attractions such as La’al Ratty, the miniature steam train which runs from Eskdale to Ravenglass by the sea and western fells. Charging points can be found at Eskdale to top up before returning to the Langdale Valley.
Another great drive and destination in a Langdale hired Twizy is over Kirkstone Pass and to Ullswater where a cruise on one of the Ullswater Steamers can be enjoyed. Another fantastic day out and the views when heading down Kirkstone Pass in the valley are stunning.
Langdale Hotel have a fleet of Twizy’s that can be hired from the hotel reception for just £10 per hour. A valid drivers licence is required to be shown and the rate includes membership of Co-Wheels. For accommodation then this Lake District Hotel has a variety of room choices starting at £125 per room or alternatively rent one of the self catering lodges, cottages or apartments for 3, 4 or 7 nights. Full details of all the accommodation options and Twizy hire details can be found by visiting http://www.langdale.co.uk.
Windermere is becoming more and more of a foodie destination as the weeks go by. What a choice of places to dine there are both in stand alone restaurants and restaurants within hotels.
It is definitely something the owners and head chef at Applegarth Villa Hotel & Restaurant have noticed and they have more than stepped up to the plate to offer their diners, residents and non residents, an even better gastronomic experience.
Local, seasonal produce are the buzz words up and down the country at the moment which is so good to hear. It’s what we should be eating as much as possible for it’s sustainability, support of local businesses, freshness and goodness. Here are three great reasons to visit and stay in a hotel that understands all this:
Reason 1 – Breakfast, the most important meal of the day. Here are two different breakfast options offered by Applegarth Villa, Cumbrian smoked salmon and eggs benedict using local, free range eggs and Cumbrian ham.
Reason 2 – Cumbrian beef and lamb. Cumbria and the Lake District farmers know a thing or two about rearing the very, very best. They are both highly popular choices on menus up and down the county.
Reason 3 – Sticky toffee pudding. Not all the ingredients may be local but it is most definitely a pudding born in Cumbria and well worth celebrating (and devouring!). John’s recipe is also gluten free.
To experience any of them or all of them visit http://www.lakesapplegarth.co.uk for room availability and restaurant information.