Keswick

Is there a more beautiful setting for a book festival than Keswick? Not in my experience there isn’t. This year there is snow on the mountains glimpsed from the gaps between the houses of this lovely market town beside Lake Derwent.

I’m in the main theatre right next to the Lake on a cold Sunday evening. An audience of around 300 have come for an evening of music and conversation hosted by Peter Stanford whose new book ‘Angels’ has just been published by Hodder and is the subject of a separate event at the Words by the Water festival.

As usual, Bookends of Carlisle is providing the books. Gwenda and her family are old friends by now. I buy a copy of Rachel Reeves new book about women in Parliament from her. My good friend Rachel was on earlier and has left by the time we arrive.

Carolyn and I get maximum pleasure from this wonderful festival staying overnight in the Royal Oak, enjoying a pint of Wainwright’s Gold (me) and shopping for Cumbrian slate mementos (her). On Monday morning we walk beside Lake Derwent wondering at a landscape that  is just beginning to produce the first of  it’s host of golden daffodils.

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