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Arts

Keswick Mountain Festival adds global paratriathlon star to speaker programme

Lauren Steadman
Lauren Steadman

[K]eswick Mountain Festival (KMF) has added another major name to its speaker programme in the Theatre by the Lake. Team GB paratriathlete Lauren Steadman will take to the stage at 6.30pm on Friday 9 June, on day one of the 2017 festival’s schedule in the theatre. Steadman is a double world champion and won a silver medal at the Rio Paralympics when Team GB competed in paratriathlon for the first time. She currently holds the European title, which she has now won four times.

Lauren Steadman, 24, was born missing her lower right arm, which only spurred her on to overcome barriers and excel in sport. Steadman’s passion for swimming started when she was just four years old and 11 years later, she represented Team GB in 2008 at the Beijing Paralympics. She also competed in London 2012 as a swimmer, but then changed specialisms to paratriathlon, and has gone on to achieve huge success with two world titles and a silver medal at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. Steadman’s dedication and drive in all aspects of her life have also seen her attain a BSC in Psychology and a Masters in Business from Portsmouth University.

During her session at Keswick Mountain Festival, Lauren Steadman will speak about her life story and experiences in sport. She will share details of why and how she changed sports, and describe the particular challenges that she has overcome in order to succeed and perform at the highest level. Steadman is sponsored by Peugeot as part of its ‘Rising Star’ programme and will also be appearing on the company’s stand during KMF in the Festival Village.

The Keswick Mountain Festival speaker programme is packed with leading figures from mountain running, climbing, art and film. The schedule will kick off with ultra-runners Jasmin Paris and Nicky Spinks at 4:30pm on Friday 9 June, who will talk about their record-breaking achievements of recent years. Lauren Steadman will then take to the stage at 6.30pm.

On Saturday 10 June, the focus of the speaker sessions will move to art, film-making and iconic climbers. The first speaker at 4:00pm will be artist Andy Beck, who will talk about his 10-year project of producing a watercolour sketch of each of the 1500 illustrations drawn by Wainwright in his seminal seven volume A Pictorial Guide to the Lakeland Fells. Next on stage at 6:30pm will be the UK’s most famous mountaineer, Sir Chris Bonington, who will talk about a life-time of discovery, pushing the limits from his first climb at the age of sixteen through to repeating his epic first ascent of the Old Man of Hoy at the age of 80. The double act of mountaineer Alan Hinkes OBE and award-winning filmmaker Terry Abraham will bring the speaker schedule to a close from 8:30pm, with a discussion about and clips from the documentary that they are working on together.

Open from 8-11 June, this year’s Keswick Mountain Festival is set to attract over 20,000 visitors to Cumbria. Launched in 2007, the festival has grown into one of the biggest and best loved outdoor events in the UK calendar. The packed four-day programme includes a host of sporting events for all ages, outdoor adventures, live music, high profile speakers, camping, exhibitor stands and a wide variety of taster activities.

Tickets for the speaker sessions start at £10 and are available now from www.keswickmountainfestival.co.uk. To find out more, visit the website or Facebook, email [email protected], or follow @keswickfestival on Twitter.

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