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Iconic lake to come alive with dramatic procession of fire & light

One of England’s most beautiful lakes is to host the new ‘Ullswater Droving’ event on the evening of Wednesday 26 October – complete with a procession of fire, masks and music which will take in a 8 mile sailing through the Lakeland nightscape.

Staged by the award-winning Eden Arts, this colourful new event will get underway with the unique spectacle of Newcastle-based street performers ‘Spark! jumping on board a traditional steamer at Glenridding. The illuminated drummers will combine light, sound and movement as they sail up the lake, arriving at Pooley Bridge just as darkness falls to meet a multitude of masked torch bearers.

As the procession winds its way through the historic village, Spark! will take to the main stage to entertain the crowds, where everyone can gather around the bonfire.

Adrian Lochhead, Director of Eden Arts, says, “We are very excited about this special one-off event to mark the recovery of flood-hit Ullswater. Taking place at half-term, this ‘mini-droving’ is great for all the family and will combine all the elements we love – light, colour, music, dressing up and above, plenty of fun. 

 

“The sight of the LED lit drummers arriving to a torch-lit procession will definitely be a special moment and it will be the perfect warm-up for Penrith’s main Winter Droving event, which takes place on 12 November.”

Rachel Bell, Group Marketing & Events Manager at Ullswater ‘Steamers’ says, “We are really looking forward to welcoming the new Ullswater Droving, it will be a fantastic display of colour and light and the perfect opportunity for people to come together and celebrate the valley during the half term break.”

The timetable for Wednesday 26 October includes:

  • 4.40pm – Short performance from Spark! Glenridding steamer jetty
  • 4.55pm – Spark! leave Glenridding on board Ullswater Steamers
  • 5.15pm – Torchbearers gather at Pooley Bridge steamer jetty for arrival of Spark!
  • 6.00pm – Torch procession begins, from jetty through Pooley Bridge

Fire torchbearers are being encouraged to wear animal masks or to dress as a drover/shepherd (with flat caps or a touch of tweed).  Register online as a masked torchbearer. Donations of £2 per fire torch are requested.

The Ullswater Droving is a flood recovery event funded by Eden District Council, Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership. Thanks to The Lions, Ullswater Steamers, the Ullswater Association and Fellbites Café in Glenridding.

ENDS

 

Notes to Editors:

For media enquiries including images and interviews, please contact: Heather Sewell, 07795 487003 / hsewell@cumbriatourism.org

 

Eden Arts is a charitable arts organisation (charity no. 1139215) based in the Eden District, Cumbria, and funded by Eden District Council, Arts Council England and The Big Lottery. Eden Arts promotes, invents, dreams and cooks up all sorts of creative projects from commissions to participatory to gigs and cinema.  www.edenarts.co.uk

Chef Phil’s Gooseberry Jam

If you’ve enjoyed a meal with us recently, you may have tried Chef Phil’s gooseberry jam. These blackcurrant-like berries are in abundance at this time of year and thanks to our local, domestic gardeners who supply us with the fruits of their labour, Phil has to get creative to make sure he uses all the produce that comes his way.

So gooseberry jam has been making a regular appearance on the menu over the last few weeks, alongside his delicious chicken liver pate. But you could enjoy it at home with a slice of mature cheddar cheese.

Anyway, we thought you might like the recipe – enjoy!

 

Ingredients: 
1kg Dessert Gooseberries
1kg Caster Sugar
Juice of 1 Lemon
50ml Damson Gin
Method:
 
  1. First, sterilise your jars by washing thoroughly in very hot soapy water. Rinse in very hot water then put on a baking sheet in a 140C/fan 120C/gas 1 oven until completely dry.
  2. Put 2 or 3 small saucers in the freezer (these will be used to test the setting later on)
  3. Place the gooseberries, lemon juice, sugar and 50ml damson gin in a large wide pan. Bring to a  simmer for 15 minutes until the fruit is very soft and pulpy.
  4. Stir over a gentle heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally so the jam doesn’t catch. The jam will start to turn a deep-red hue as it cooks.
  5. Spoon a little jam onto a chilled saucer, leave to cool then run your finger through it. If it’s ready it will wrinkle up. If this doesn’t happen boil for another 5 minutes then keep testing and boiling until it does.
  6. Do a final skim on the finished jam then pour into the sterilised jars and seal. Store in a cool dark place – the jam will be good for up to 6 months. Keep in the fridge once opened
 
Tip: Dessert gooseberries are sweeter than the traditional green gooseberry and have a high pectin content, so there is no need for preserving sugar for this recipe

The Ullswater Way opens

From Waterfalls to Wainwright – there’s a new way to explore Ullswater

Communities and businesses around the Lake District’s Ullswater Valley are celebrating the launch of a brand new walking route – the Ullswater Way – around what many believe to be England’s most beautiful lake. The new, 20-mile walking route connects the spectacular scenery along the shores of Ullswater with the picturesque villages and attractions, meaning visitors can enjoy even more of this special corner of the Lake District.

Eric Robson Opens the New Ullswater Way
Eric Robson Opens the New Ullswater Way

Following the floods in December, people in the Ullswater area of the Lake District have been working hard to get reconnected and let people know how they are ‘open for business’. This has been particularly important in areas like Glenridding and Pooley Bridge where the flood damage made headline news across the country.
The creation of a promoted circular route around Ullswater has long been an ambition of the community, so the opportunity was seized and a partnership project was put into action between local people and Lake District National Park, the National Trust, the Ullswater Association, Eden District Council, Ullswater Steamers, and See More Cumbria with additional funding from the Cumbria Waste Management Environment Trust.

Suzy Hankin, Area Ranger for the Lake District National Park, said: “The Ullswater Way is a fantastic example of people working in partnership on a project that will hopefully give the local economy a much needed boost. Ullswater remains a popular corner of the Lake District, yet people tend to explore it in pockets rather than connecting their journey. The community around Ullswater wanted to encourage visitors to enjoy the valley’s iconic scenery on foot, but to also utilise links to the public transport network, and hopefully give people a reason to stay for longer.

Walking the Ullswater Way at Gowbarrow Copyright Val Corbett
“Although there were already existing walking routes in the area, there wasn’t a fully connected route around the lake. So we have been working with local people, businesses and landowners to improve access, including a new 2.5km public right of way, and the installation of new waymarkers, fingerposts and gates to make it easier for people to navigate on the ground.”
The Ullswater Way crosses sections of open fell and farm land, offering visitors stunning views, as well as the path Wainwright described as ‘the most beautiful and rewarding walk in Lakeland’. The route also includes a new section of footpath near Maiden Castle, once the site of an Iron Age Hill fort it now offers spectacular views of the Ullswater Valley, as well as views to the Pennines to the East and Blencathra to the west.

Ullswater Way
New Ullswater way-marker

Jim Walker, from Ullswater Steamers, and Chair of the working group said: “Ullswater is famous for its stunning views of the lake and the surrounding mountains – from kayaking to climbing Helvellyn and from the spectacular waterfalls at Aira Force to simply enjoying the local hospitality. The Ullswater Way now means long distance walkers can now walk round the full 20 mile route, and those who want to explore at a more leisurely pace can break up the journey by including a trip on the historic Ullswater Steamers or open top bus.”