From the beginning, the Dark Mountain Project has been both an invitation to a journey and an act of coming home. In Issue 14, our latest anthology of writing and art, we address these interwoven themes – mapping and remembering, moving and staying, travelling and returning – and to celebrate its publication, we will be holding a launch event at Sprint Mill in the Lake District on Saturday 13th October.
This will be no ordinary book launch. In keeping with the themes of Issue 14, we invite you to set out with us on a journey that will involve a series of walks, activities and performance, as well as an overnight camp at nearby Red Bank Farm.
The day will begin with a walk from Burneside Train Station, near Kendal in the Lakes, following the course of the River Sprint to Sprint Mill. The mill is an extraordinary experience: a building that has become an artwork in itself, and archive of what its owner, Edward Acland, calls ‘cagmagery’. A fine venue for the launch of a book that is, in part, a celebration of the uniqueness of ‘place’ and the land.
At Sprint Mill, the Dark Mountain editorial team will introduce Issue 14 and its contributors share readings.There will also be an opportunity to explore the three floors of the mill and its permaculture garden. After which, we will continue our walk up the River Sprint, this time in the company of the Kairos Collective, Dark Mountain’s kindred theatre and performance troupe. Expect all sorts of mischief as the Collective leads us through a series of participative encounters with the river and its surrounding landscape.
The journey will end at Red Bank Farm, where we will set up camp, share a pot-luck supper in the barn – known in Cumbria as a ‘Jacob’s join’ – and then clear the space for music and a ceilidh dance. There will be local ale on tap and a fire around which to share stories and songs long into the night.
It’s been two years since the last Dark Mountain gathering, at Base Camp at Embercombe. There have been other events, launches and collaborations since but this is our first opportunity to gather together round a campfire again. It feels like an appropriate way to be launching this special anthology of our work, and it’s a rare chance to meet and connect with others who are interested in the project and the wider issues it explores. There’s a train that arrives at Burneside Station at 12.14 on Saturday 13th October. We’ll be waiting for you there. We hope you’ll join us.
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Please note, because this event involves walking on rough paths and camping at a farm, we regret that it is not accessible for wheelchair users or those with limited mobility. If you have concerns about access, please contact [email protected] and we can discuss in detail the route and conditions.