Kendal Mountain Festival attracts thousands of visitors. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Kendal Mountain Festival attracts thousands of visitors. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

This year’s Kendal Mountain Festival will take place only online.

Organisers of one of the UK’s largest outdoors events took the decision not to go ahead with the gathering in the Cumbrian town, scheduled for November.

Uncertainty over the developing coronavirus situation and changing rules and lockdowns forced the move online.

In a statement, organisers said: “Recent events have made it clear that, for us, it’s time to re-calibrate.

“We all want Kendal Mountain Festival to excite and inspire in the same way that it has for 40 years. But bringing people together on the ground this particular year, with the constantly shifting guidelines, is looking increasingly problematic.”

The festival regularly attracts thousands of visitors to its four-day programme of films, talks and displays. One of the most popular features of the event is the Basecamp, held in large marquees, where outdoor enthusiasts can rub shoulders with luminaries from the mountaineering, walking, running and adventure world.

The organising committee had considered holding an open-air basecamp for 2020, but the most recent moves by the UK Government and more stringent restrictions on gatherings made the event increasingly difficult to stage.

Sir Chris Bonington meets festival-goers at the 2019 event. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Sir Chris Bonington meets festival-goers at the 2019 event. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Organisers said: “We’ll be pouring all our effort and energy into creating an amazing experience at Kendal Mountain Festival Online.

“All the excitement and inspiration of our usual live events will be available, live-streamed from the Lake District on to your screens. We’ve received a record number of entries into our film competition, so you’ll be able to access a packed programme of the best films from across the world.

“And everything will be available to watch for a period after the main festival. Finally: your chance to catch all those events and films that you can’t usually fit in.

“If you love our famous Basecamp, don’t worry; our Virtual Basecamp will bring you a truly interactive experience featuring our festival partners, top brands from the world of adventure, with lots of free content including the Basecamp stage.”

More details are on the Kendal Mountain Festival website.

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