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Keswick Mountain Festival speaker programme will present icons

The organisers of Keswick Mountain Festival have revealed more details of the line-up of speakers who will appear when the event returns this year.

The schedule includes big names from the world of outdoor adventure and sports, along with high profile celebrities and charity campaigners. The festival will run from 17-19 May and tickets are available now.

Founded in 2007, Keswick Mountain Festival (KMF) is one of the UK’s best-loved outdoor festivals, attracting thousands of visitors to Cumbria for its unique offer. KMF took a break last year, and is returning in 2024, with an emphasis on outdoor sports and activities, a line-up of inspirational speakers throughout the weekend, a showcase of established and up and coming live music acts, and plenty of food and drink options. The new look festival will also strive to make its Crow Park base as accessible as possible and is aiming to deliver a positive impact for the town of Keswick, and the surrounding area.

A full and varied speaker programme has always been a core attraction of Keswick Mountain Festival and for 2024, this will be front and centre, with speaker sessions taking place during each day on Crow Park, and designed to be available to more visitors than ever. The Crow Park programme includes outdoor adventure and sports figures such as: The UK’s most successful high altitude mountaineer Alan Hinkes; ultra-running icon Nicky Spinks; adventurer and author Alastair Humphreys; world renowned ironman triathlete Chrissie Wellington; outdoor broadcaster and author Cameron McNeish; Munro-round record holder Jamie Aarons; ‘Mountain Man’ author, hiker and runner James Forrest; multiple endurance challenge record holder Sean Conway; ultra-running coach, podcaster, presenter and author Allie Bailey; and Black Trail Runners, the community and campaigning charity that is seeking to increase participation of Black people in the sport.

Three other speakers will bring different perspectives to the festival. Timmy Mallett is well known as a flamboyant television presenter, but is also an artist and cyclist, and in 2022 completed a solo circumnavigation of the coast of Britain, tracing the footsteps of J.M.W. Turner. Louise Minchin is a former presenter of BBC Breakfast who is an accomplished triathlete and qualified for the Great Britain Age-Group Triathlon Team. Finally, Mel Nicholls, is a wheelchair athlete who competed in the London 2012 Paralympic Games and in 2019, set a new world record for handcycling from Land’s End to John O’Groats.

Many of the KMF speaker sessions will be free to access on a first-come-first served basis for visitors who have booked sports or other festival tickets. For other sessions, tickets are now available on the KMF website.

In addition, there will be a special evening of speakers at the Theatre by the Lake on Saturday 18 May. At 5:30pm, Louise Minchin will host a session with four-time Ironman Triathlon World Champion Chrissie Wellington and Mel Nicholls, when they will discuss their sporting careers and their love of the outdoors. Then, at 8:30pm, 3 Dads Walking will take to the stage. Tim, Mike and Andy are three suicide-bereaved fathers who have been walking and campaigning since 2021 in memory of their daughters, Emily, Beth and Sophie. Their aim is to spread the word about suicide prevention so other families don’t go through the same trauma as theirs, and they have made a big impact nationally, up to the highest level of government. They will talk about their work and their walks at the festival. 3 Dads Walking also raise money for the charity Papyrus which works to prevent young suicide. The session at KMF will be a fundraiser and £5 for every adult ticket sold for the session (and £2.50 for every child’s ticket) will be donated to Papyrus.

Places at the ticketed speaker sessions at Keswick Mountain Festival are available now at www.keswickmountainfestival.co.uk, and the website includes more details of the full schedule. Find the event on Facebook or follow @keswickfestival on X and Instagram for the latest news and information.

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