Keswick Mountain Festival To Take A Year Off In 2023

Organisers of Keswick Mountain Festival (KMF) have announced that the event will take a year off in 2023, in order to safeguard the longer term future of the festival. In a message shared with regular visitors, local partners and stakeholders, and sponsors and exhibitors, the team behind KMF outlined the reasons for the decision (see The current economic conditions, spiralling costs for staging the event, and the significant squeeze on household disposable income, all mean that KMF would most likely incur an unsustainable loss in 2023, putting the whole existence of the festival in jeopardy. Organisers believe that it is more prudent to have a fallow year and then come back bigger and stronger in 2024.

Festival director Nicola Meadley said: “This has been a really difficult decision for us to take. We have looked at various scenarios to try and run the full festival as usual in 2023, but sadly, we drew the conclusion that pushing on and crossing our fingers for the best is too great a risk for everyone involved. Simply passing on our increasing costs to visitors and exhibitors is not the way that we want to go. Meanwhile, unlike some other events, we don’t get financial help from local authorities, which is disappointing.

“In these circumstances, we would rather take this hard decision now, than take a chance and find ourselves in an untenable position in the lead up to the festival weekend. Not only would that put the whole future of the event at risk, it would also cause economic pain to our suppliers and exhibitors, and to the local business community, all of whom are important and much valued festival partners. We know that our brilliant festival goers will be disappointed and we will really miss welcoming them to Keswick in 2023, but we also hope that they understand.”

Although the festival will sit out 2023, there is some good news for runners. The KMF team will work with Mountain Run to put on a 'KMF Trail Running Weekend' which will take place on the festival weekend of 20-21 May. More details on this will be announced in October.