Robert Macfarlane is Patron of the Festival, and states:

“I am so proud to be a patron of the new Kendal Mountain Literature Festival – a celebration and exploration of our stories of place. I love the Lake District, the mountains – and all that this Festival stands. Its great theme is that of imagination’s relationship with landscape — and its great vision is to bring about participation by means of inspiration. So please come and join us here in Kendal, to launch this Festival in its first year.”

2019 Programme

Highlights from 2019 included:

Dierdre Wolownick-Honnold from the USA shared her new memoir The Sharp End of Life – A Mother’s Story. At 58, inspired by her son – free-climber Alex Honnold – Dierdre took up rock climbing and became the oldest woman to climb El Capitan.

There was an evening of high alpine inspiration with photographer Ben Tibbets presenting his spectacular Alpenglow photography from the highest peaks in the European Alps.

Cycling fans joined a celebration of the Rough Stuff Fellowship Archive – the oldest off-road cycling club in the world. Endurance cyclist Emily Chappell shared her story of transformation from London cycle courier to cross-continental bike racer in her new book Where There’s a Will.

There was an opportunity to take a musical journey through the British landscapes with author Richard King presenting his new work.

And Edmund Hillary‘s close friend of nearly 50 years, Michael Gill talked about his new biography on the first man to reach the summit of Everest.