Words by the Water Festival

A Festival of Words and Ideas

Priority Booking to Friends: 17 January
Public Booking: 24 January

From 8 -17 March Theatre by the Lake will play host to hundreds of excellent authors and speakers discussing a diverse and intriguing range of subjects.

Words by the Water is always challenging and thought-provoking. What better to do in spring than engage with some of the best thinkers, writers and commentators over the 10 days of the festival?

This year's festival includes: Prue Leith, Alan Johnson, Anna Pasternak, Diarmaid MacCulloch, John Lanchester, Salley Vickers, Lynne Truss, Marcus du Sautoy, Louis de Bernières, John Simpson, Robin Ince, Chris Bonnington, Anthony Seldon, Gina Rippon, Julie Summers, Raymond Tallis, Sarah Churchwell and of course, our festival president Melvyn Bragg.

Comedy is on the menu with events from Guardian satirist John Crace, comedian and mad-cap explorer Tim FitzHigham as well as the irreverent poet, Roger McGough, offering both hilarious and thought-provoking readings.

The Studio offers an eclectic range of events based around theme days. Christopher Skaife the Ravenmaster from the Tower of London, Jonny Benjamin who was saved from taking his own life by a stranger, Mike Berners-Lee on combatting climate change and politician Rachel Reeves unpicks the role of women in British politics.

As ever local talent is celebrated in a range of talks by local writers on climbing Skiddaw, a walk to Borrowdale Valley and a glimpse of Penrith in the 18th Century are a just a taste of some of the delights on offer on the ever popular Bookcase Day.

There are over 100 events at this year's festival. Whether it is history, philosophy, politics or comedy Words by the Water has something for everyone, explore the programme and see what you can find.
A brochure with full details of all events is available HERE.
If you’d like to get the most out of your visit simply click on the links below to purchase everything from multi-day to single day passes. If you have a specific event in mind, click on 'Individual Speakers' to book for your chosen talk.
Festival passes
Individual speakers