For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move. ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Portrait Of Kendal

I've long thought Kendal a place where I could easily put down roots. It lies just outside the boundary of the Lake District National Park, so property is cheaper there. It's grittier, more workaday, less touristy than Lakeland honeypot towns like Windermere, Ambleside and Keswick. Its arts and cultural scene is excellent: there's the Kendal Museum, the Museum of Lakeland Life, the Abbot Hall Art Gallery and the Brewery Arts Centre, which offers theatre, dance, cinema, music, exhibitions, bars and cafés. Its geographical location is enviable: the Forest of Bowland, the Yorkshire Dales and the Pennines are quickly reached heading east, while the nearby M6 motorway makes North Wales and Scotland within comfortable driving distance. And, of course, the Lake District itself is on Kendal's doorstep, one of the most stunningly beautiful parts of Britain, and containing some of England's highest peaks.    

The river Kent runs through Kendal.

Dog training on the slopes of Castle Hill.

Kendal Castle. Not that there's much of it left.

The same bit of Kendal Castle, but from the other side.

You can see why Kendal is known as 'The Auld Grey Town'.

Looking towards the fells of The Lake District from the beacon on Castle Hill.

The sun illuminating some Lakeland fells north of town.

15 comments:

Rubye Jack said...

It looks like a truly beautiful place, but putting down roots? What a commitment that would be!

Friko said...

You forget to mention the mint cake.

It is a beautiful part of the world, a little less popular than the Lakes District but none the worse for that. The lack of crowds make your pictures even more attractive.

The Solitary Walker said...

Ha, yes . . . I've just read your recent post, Rubye.

Mint cake, Friko? Can't bear the stuff! It was the Kendal Mintfest last weekend. Lots of street performers and suchlike.

Alive said...

Love the River Kent, hope to return one day to follow the flowing life in the other direction.

Goat said...

Yup, I reckon I could live there - if there was some way to make a living. Love the pictures, especially the dog training and the ruins.

Ruth said...

Looks and sounds like a wonderful location to settle, Robert.

Oddly enough, my husband is looking online at places up north for us to settle in retirement at the moment. But no matter how much he looks, he'll never find a spot like Kendal in this country.

Scott said...

Water is key, I think. A river pulsing through town. The Kent looks lovely.
I agree, grit keeps it real. Kendal seems to have a lot of good qualities.

am said...

Wonderful place! My favorite image is of the sun on the fells. Deja vu again.

Dominic Rivron said...

Good, isn't it? The one way system is a b***** though!

The Weaver of Grass said...

I love Kendal Robert and used to go quite often. Sadly, they changed the road system a couple of years ago and the last time I went with a friend, we drove round three times trying to find the car park and ended up going through to Windermere when we just could not get off a continuous link round and round.

The Solitary Walker said...

Thanks for your comments Alive, Goat, Ruth, Scott, am, Dominic and Weaver of Grass. Pat — that sounds like one of Dante's circles of Hell. (Though, since this is the Lake District, it must be Heaven.)

John Morrison said...

I live ten minute's walk from Blackwell, so Kendal is 'town' for me, for things I can't buy locally. I lived in Kendal for a few months and, despite appearances, it wasn't a happy time. Good place to visit (or use as a starting point for wider explorations), but the one-way system is bonkers... especially since the town has been comprehensively by-passed! My theory is that most of the traffic is simply driving round and round, looking for a parking space... or the way out of town...

The Solitary Walker said...

Thanks for visiting, John. Seems like that one-way system is a bit of a curse.

Celtic Storm Films said...

If I may, I would love to use this photo and edit it in an after effects composition for a non-profit making documentary, my contact is celticstormfilms(a)live.com
All the best Rick

The Solitary Walker said...

Yes, you may use any of these photos, Rick, if you credit me with them.