Date Posted: 12th January 2015

Sekers' silk mills at Hensingham
workington docks

After a terrible start to the year for writers, artists and the whole of mankind, let us all continue to express ourselves freely without fear and protect our right to do so.

There are 2 interesting events for your diary in Cumbria this spring:
The programme for the annual Festival of words and ideas -  Words by the Water  6th – 15th March is available and is jam packed with stimulating stuff. This is at Theatre by the Lake in Keswick. I’ll keep you posted but some things get booked up quickly so you need to act now.

I guess most of you have never heard of the Cumbria Industrial History Society – I hadn’t until I was invited to contribute to this year’s Spring Conference in April. They are taking a side step from their usual fare– foundries and furnaces, mills and mines – this year to look at the links between industry and the arts and I’ve been asked to speak about Percy Kelly’s connection with industry through his work.  I’m making you aware of this well in advance because some of you may decide to travel a long way or fit it into other plans.  I’ll be showing a lot of his industrial paintings and drawings to illustrate the talk. As PK was born on the industrial coast of West Cumbria at the heart of mining, steel and docks and was then ‘discovered’ by Bill Hamilton the design manager at Sekers textilesin Whitehaven, there is plenty to choose from.
The other speakers will be
Stephen Wildman - John Ruskin and the Arts and Crafts Movement
Ian Bruce - The Keswick School of Industrial Arts
Neil Curry – Norman Nicholson, Poet
Maddi Nicholson and Stuart Bastik – Valuing Memories Today
The conference will take place at the Shap Wells Hotel which is just off the A6  a few miles south of Penrith on Saturday 18th April and is open to anyone who is interested.
The day’s programme and further information about the talks can be found at .

I hope you all have a peaceful and creative year.