Arts and culture in Kirby Lonsdale and beyond
One of Turner’s most famous paintings, Ruskin’s View, features St. Mary’s Church in Kirkby Lonsdale and the backdrop of the River Lune. Located just behind the Sun Inn, it’s a must for overnight guests and diners in the restaurant alike.
Visitors to the Sun Inn in Kirkby Lonsdale can also explore a range of easily-accessible arty delights. The Finestra Gallery in Main Street offers a continuous exhibition of international and local artists who have taken inspiration from the surrounding landscape of the Yorkshire Dales, Lancashire and the Lake District. In the next village, the Leck Gallery offers private art viewings and regular literature study days centred around the likes of the Brontë sisters, who attended school less a mile away.
Hotel visitors can experience a wide range of craft demos, heritage displays, working looms and visiting artists at Farfield Mill. This restored Victorian woollen mill set over four floors is in nearby Sedbergh, which is also officially England’s ‘Book Town’.
Kendal’s art and culture scene includes the intriguing Quaker Tapestry and one of Britain’s finest independent art galleries at Abbot Hall. Meanwhile, the Brewery Arts Centre is a lively arts venue with touring theatre, music, dance and comedy acts.
Back at base, Kirkby Lonsdale itself is a charming mix of cobbled courtyards, elegant 18th century buildings and stone cottages, all linked together with evocative names including Jingling Lane and Salt Pie Lane. With an array of independent retailers, there are plenty of traditional Cumbrian and Lancastrian arts and crafts, unique collectables and boutique clothes shops.