Striking piece at heart of Lakes Alive

Date: Tuesday 12th September 2017
Steve Messam’s “Keep” at Lakes Alive, Kendal.
Steve Messam’s “Keep” at Lakes Alive, Kendal.

A LARGE scale installation by artist Steve Messam, formerly of Kirkby Stephen, took centre stage at the weekend’s Lakes Alive festival which brought amazing art, activities and performance to Kendal.

Steve Messam's piece, Keep — a towering red castle — which appeared on the Saturday, was a huge draw for visitors.

Another major highlight was Pete Johnson’s Shipping Forecast at Kendal Castle. This was an outstanding success, visited by thousands of people between Friday and Sunday.

Hundreds of people gathered to watch the sun go down and the lights start to illuminate the hill, gently catching the breeze.

Lakes Alive also saw vast numbers visiting the Open Studios at The Factory, Shakespeare Centre, Brewery Arts Centre and Abbot Hall Park.

Dance acts Folk Dance Remixed and AbouTime Dance wowed crowds, as did dozens of other music and sound installations.

Phillippa Haynes, festival director, said: “It was wonderful weekend. I take my hat off to our audience especially on Sunday for braving the horrible weather. But nothing seems to put them off joining the party!

“We brought fantastic work to Kendal and the people responded brilliantly. We’ve been thrilled by the response and feedback. The procession up to Kendal Castle was a special moment that people will remember for years.”

Lakes Alive was also a celebration of World Heritage Site Status for the Lake District national park.

A legacy of this year’s Lakes Alive is the creation of an amazing walkscape: To Travel and To Matter.

This is located in Grasmere and is available to take part in for the next three years.

Powerfully fusing music, sound and voices, and inspired by the history and topography of the location, To Travel and To Matter uses Strijbos & van Rijswijk’s digital app Walk With Me.

People can download the app and at their own pace walk through the hills above Grasmere listening and experiencing the landscape in a totally new way.