Kendal Town Council

Waste into Wellbeing, Kendal’s dedicated social food project which redistributes rescued food, has found a new venue to expand its positive impact thanks to support from Kendal Town Council.

The new venue on Highgate will be known as ‘The Eddington Kendal’ and comprises of the former Kendal United Reformed Church, built in 1898 as the Zion Congregational Chapel and the adjacent sports hall built in the 1960s. The current owner, Bruce Withington, bought the building in 2022 with the aim of preserving the church (a listed Grade 2 building) and the sports hall as a community asset for Kendal.

”We’re delighted to be working in partnership with South Lakes Action on Climate Change and Kendal Town Council to breathe new life back into the hall. We look forward to inviting more organisations to explore the space with a view to offering complementary activities allowing the community to make full use of The Eddington”.

To help facilitate the move, Bruce, together with members of South Lakes Action on Climate Change (the charity behind Waste into Wellbeing) has created a new Community Interest Company with a board of volunteer directors, who bring both global and local expertise, to ensure the Eddington becomes a true community asset. The new CIC will manage the building on behalf of, and in collaboration with the town’s community to deliver an inspirational, practical, and realistic approach to current and future climate challenges.

The Eddington Kendal will allow Waste into Wellbeing to grow its operation and continue to serve customers from its community larder, Kendal People’s Café and community cooking experiences, as well as welcoming additional customers who will enjoy the new vibrant café.

The vision for the premises is to use the increased space to demonstrate how Kendal Town Council and its partners continue to respond to the recommendations of the Kendal Climate Change Citizens Climate Jury. The creation of a ‘One Stop Shop’ of climate information and demonstratable action was a key recommendation of Jury Members.

The Eddington will be a sustainability themed venue with a community café at its heart, where people can meet, learn and support one another in creating healthy sustainable lifestyles.

Chris Rowley South Lakes Action on Climate Change and WIW Volunteer said ‘Waste into Wellbeing is thrilled to be part of saving this building and developing it for community use. We look forward to working with all our partners over the coming years in creating an exciting new space in Kendal, designed to support the community as well as acting on Climate Jury recommendations’

In addition to the Community Café and climate themed murals, learning area and displays, the CIC team plan to set up a bike recycling and repurposing operation and will be inviting other groups to work with them on resurrecting the Victorian kitchen garden at the rear of the building to demonstrate other lifestyle changes that can lead to reducing carbon.

To follow the CICs activity and find out how to get involved, follow their Facebook and Instagram pages @EddingtonKendal.


The Serpentine family trails launch event will take place this Saturday 25th Nov at 10:30am.

All are welcome to join us for the Mayor’s official opening and to have a go at completing the trails.

For those unable to join us for the launch event, free trail leaflets are available to pick up from the library and town hall, or downloadable via Visit Kendal.

Following the success of the 2022 event, Kendal Town Council’s Mountain and Sky Lights Switch-on will once again team up with the famous Mountain Festival to kickstart the Christmas season.

Residents are invited to Kendal Mountain Festival Basecamp, at Abbot Hall Park for welcome films at 5pm. A colourful family parade, led by Drum Nation and stilt walkers, will leave the Festival’s basecamp at 5.30pm, making its way up Highgate and Stricklandgate into Market Place. All are welcome to join in the festive parade.

Father Christmas and his sleigh will be in Market Place from 5pm, and there’ll be mulled wine, music and a classic fairground ride to add to the Christmas magic. As the parade reaches the square, Growing Singers will perform songs celebrating the joy of the great outdoors.

The Mayor of Kendal will lead the countdown to the light switch on, but not before a Kendal Mountain Festival special! Spectators will be invited to look to the skies as renowned Slackliner Lukas Irmler performs his daredevil antics overhead.

For those wishing to continue the festivities, Ragtag Arts will be in Finkle Street and children will have the chance to meet Lukas and test their balance with a slackline taster. All the while, a few stalls will offer a chance to enjoy some food and drink.

Cllr Helen Ladhams, chair of Kendal Town Council’s Christmas Lights and Festivals committee said: ‘The partnership with Kendal Mountain Festival was such a success last year, we’re delighted to be working with the team again to bring Kendal residents a lights switch-on to remember. We’re so lucky to have international acts like Lukas here in Kendal, and of course to have such an incredible array of local talent and supporters to make this community event so special’.

The Mountain and Sky Christmas Lights Event is 5-8pm on Thursday 16 November 2023. For more info and updates follow the Kendal Christmas Lights Switch On Facebook Page.

Special thanks go to Kendal Mountain Festival, Kendal BID and Town Councillors for their support in making this event happen.




Biodiversity Grant Awarded to Community Group

A local residents’ group has been awarded money to help them restore a valued area of open space near their houses.

The Kirkbie Green Community Group have received a grant of £500 from the Kendal Town Council’s dedicated biodiversity and nature recovery fund.

The group, with support from Kendal Conservation Volunteers, plan to use the funding to plant wild flowers and ferns in Kirkbie Green, near the Lakeland town’s Gooseholme Park.

Previously the green had been used as a muddy short cut, but thanks to the group’s initiative access has been restricted and walkers and cyclists are now encouraged to use an adjacent tarmac footpath. The diversion will enable more plants to grow and allow the green to thrive as a biodiverse space.

Chair of the Town Council’s Environment Committee, Cllr Eamonn Hennessy said ‘We are delighted to fund the work of this community group and see residents once again actively supporting nature recovery on their doorstep. Kirkbie Green will be enhanced as a result and we encourage more community groups to apply so we can repeat positive action across Kendal’.

Kirkbie Green resident Austin Challis commented: “It was a warm and unifying experience for the Kirkbie Green residents and local groups supporting rewilding projects in our community. A celebration of repurposing our green space from quagmire to green corridor”.

Local MP, Tim Farron joined the Mayor and councillors presenting the cheques: “This is exactly what we need in our communities – spaces linking up green corridors and building sustainable environment for future generations”.

Kendal Town Council’s commitment to Biodiversity has been further strengthened by the Committee’s decision to adopt a Pesticides Policy which ensures the Town Council no longer use pesticides on the green spaces it manages. The Committee also approved a trial using Creeping Thyme on a difficult triangle of land by the roadside. It is hoped that it will outcompete weeds and therefore reduce the need to use strong chemical pesticides, which can be harmful to watercourses and insectlife.

To apply for a Biodiversity grant or learn more about our policies please visit our website or get in touch via office@

The Mayor of Kendal welcomed representatives from Kendal Mountain Festival’s China office to the Mayor’s Parlour in Kendal Town Hall. Accompanied by KMF Director Steve Scott, the group was joined by a delegation from the Jiangbei District Cultural Tourism Development Company, who were visiting Cumbria to learn about managing cultural and outdoor sporting destinations, as they develop their own Wubao Ecological Sports Town in south east China.

Cllr Julia Dunlop, Mayor of Kendal said, ‘it was a pleasure to show our Chinese visitors some glimpses of our town’s long history. The group was particularly impressed by the Ceremonial Sword, and the Maces (all from the 17th century), and of course Queen Katherine’s Book of Devotions from the 16th century. We hope they took away a message of the value of preserving the past whilst building for a sustainable future.’

The group was hosted by Kendal Mountain Festival, who in 2023 are celebrating ten years of operating in China.

Town prepares for Cumbria in Bloom judging

The recent dry spell couldn’t end too soon for the staff and volunteers preparing Kendal for the visiting judges from Cumbria in Bloom on Thursday 13 July. ‘We’ve had some serious challenges this year, but some of our displays are looking fantastic, now the rain has come to assist in the watering’, explained committee vice chair Cllr Richard Sutton. This year’s judging has extra resonance as the town was picked last year to represent Cumbria in the national Britain in Bloom competition, which takes place in early August.

Winter vehicle damage to the Birdcage, at the top of the town’s busy Finkle Street, can’t take away from the blooming marvel of the canopy’s hanging basket display, but these days In Bloom is about far more than showy flowers. Cumbria in Bloom Judges will see the sustainable garden developed at the historic Unitarian Chapel off Branthwaite Brow, and the first season bloom of wildflower planting on Kendal Green. A new display of perennials was planted at Kirkland to celebrate the Coronation of His Majesty Charles III, and green fingers will be to the fore at Wattsfield allotments.

In the town’s iconic Fellside quarter, judges will visit the idyllic Subscription Bowling Club, a recreation of a Victorian fern garden, and community planting projects at the Triangle and Noble’s Rest.

A spokesperson for the Town Council said, ‘with the flood scheme works dominating the riverside scene, it’s easy to forget what a lovely town we live in. We hope to show that we are taking the challenges of sustainability seriously, as well as making our future town a beautiful place to live, work and visit’.

Town Hall reveals its ‘hidden’ treasures

In the heart of Kendal there are hidden treasures! The Mayor’s Parlour, in Kendal Town Hall, is a small space containing items of huge importance and beauty that illustrate the history of the town, from the Domesday book onwards.

Following successful sessions earlier this year, Kendal Town Council has invited members of the public to visit the Mayor’s Parlour in a further series of free monthly sessions. Council Heritage Officer, Simon Unsworth, will give a short talk on Kendal’s history and its development as a town of international importance, through its early beginnings to the wool trade and its present, vibrant incarnation as a popular Lakeland market town. Whether it’s Queen Kathryn Parr’s ‘Book of Devotions’ – handwritten by Henry VIII’s surviving wife, the art of George Romney or the town’s historic Charters, its Civic Sword and beautiful Maces, there’s something in the Parlour to fascinate everyone. It’s a great opportunity to learn about the Auld Grey Town and its place in history. Picture highlights include the fascinating ‘Hiring Fair on New Road Common’ by Cuthbert Rigby (1898).

Visits last between last 90-120 minutes and include time for questions. Attendees are welcome to take photographs of most things in the room. The sessions will take place on:

Wednesday    14th June at 10.30am

Wednesday    28th June at 2pm

Wednesday    26th July at 2pm (CANCELLED)

Wednesday    2nd August at 5.30pm (CANCELLED)

Tuesday          15th August at 2pm (CANCELLED)

Thursday        24th August at 10.30am

Booking is essential, as places are limited. To book, email . You’re asked to arrive at the Town Hall 5 minutes before the start time and wait in the foyer where Simon will meet you and take you to the parlour. The Parlour is on the first floor and a lift is available.

Carus Green Golf Club recovered from a shocking fire to host the Mayor of Kendal’s Charity Dinner on Friday evening. Staff at the Burneside Road club pulled out all the stops to ensure that Mayor Cllr Doug Rathbone’s event could go ahead. Diners raised over £1,000 for the Mayor’s two charities – Kendal Debt Centre and The Well Communities.

Before the meal, guests were entertained by the massed voices of the K-Shoes Male Voice Choir, the award-winning performers who take their name from the K-Shoe Factory, which once dominated the southern half of Kendal. An extra bonus was the natural light display through the venue’s picture windows, as an evening shower created vivid rainbows before a golden sunset over the surrounding fells.

In the company of newly installed High Sherriff of Cumbria, Samantha Scott, and a complement of Deputy Lord Lieutenants, Mayors, Councillors, businesses and charities guests enjoyed a three course meal of local beef, chicken or a meat-free option, saving space for warm chocolate brownie, banoffee trifle or lemon and ginger cheesecake, all accompanied by locally produced ice cream.

Speakers from the Well Communities and Kendal Debt Centre spoke passionately about their work, reminding diners what the cause was for. Mayor of Kendal Cllr Rathbone said, ‘it was a fantastic effort from staff at Carus Green to be back in business so soon after the challenge of a fire, but everyone was delighted with the event. It was amazing to be able to enjoy the K Shoes Choir entertaining us and wonderful to share the stories and work done in our town by my two mayoral charities.”

Cllr Rathbone concludes his Mayoral Year at the end of April, and will make his charity presentations at the Town Council’s Mayor Making Ceremony in the Town Hall on 18

Kendal Town Council, with support from local volunteers, have created three new wildflower areas at Kendal Green, a historic open space in the northern part of the town. The volunteer team will see their efforts rewarded when native wildflowers including Ragged Robin, Birds Foot Trefoil and Lady’s Bed Straw start to flower in June. Temporary signs have been installed while the flowers are growing to inform Green users that wildflowers will be arriving soon.

The Town Council has funded the project via its dedicated biodiversity budget which is committed to increasing the biodiversity of Kendal’s green spaces. The initiative follows successful wildflower planting at Somervell Garden by the River Kent, and at Aynam Road, where they complement new planting installed to mark the Queen’s Jubilee in 2022. It’s hoped another well-received project will lead to more wildflower planting in the future. One volunteer said, ‘Its great to be creating a habitat that supports pollinators. We have so much green space on Kendal Green its fantastic that parts of it can be utilised in this way’.

Town Councillor, Kate Simpson, who instigated the project, hopes many more wildflower areas will be created. “I hope it encourages more local groups to get in touch with the Town Council, to apply for a biodiversity grant to help enhance more of our green spaces”.

The initiative was supported by grounds maintenance contractor Continental Landscapes Ltd, and by Westmorland and Furness Council, who own the land at Kendal Green.

The Clean River Kent group are recruiting more volunteers to support their dedicated actions to improve the water quality of the River Kent.

Volunteers recently presented to Kendal Town Council to share data regarding the state of the river, the causes of pollution and potential solutions to the ongoing issue.

To learn more about the group and their achievements to date, follow this link. Interested volunteers can complete this survey to register their interest and learn more.