The Theatre by the Lake

Location : Keswick  –  Grid Reference: NY 264227

Lakeside, Keswick, CA12 5DJ. Box office tel 017687 74411
email: [email protected]

Approaching the Theatre by the Lake from Keswick direction.

The Theatre by the Lake is Britain’s most remote producing theatre.  It is  situated between the Lakeside car park and Derwentwater at Keswick. The 400 seat theatre replaces the ‘blue box’ Century Theatre, which had been in Keswick since 1975.  It has a very beautiful location very near to the boat landings and close enough to Keswick town to be able to stroll back after the evening’s entertainment.
It is the home for Cumbria’s leading professional theatre company, and produces traditional summer seasons of drama, much loved by Keswick’s summer audiences.
The Theatre also offers film screenings, music, festivals (including the Keswick Mountain Festival and ‘Words by the Water’) and a range of other events. It hosts regular arts and crafts exhibitions and other day-time activities.

Looking to the auditorium from the stage.

Replacing the old Blue Box touring theatre with a permanent successor in Keswick, had been a dream for twenty years, and an Arts Council Lottery Fund Grant made this possible.
The theatre was officially opened in December 1999 by Dame Judi Dench and her late husband Michael Williams, presidents of the Theatre by the Lake.
See The Michael Williams and Dame Judi Dench  Website , an unofficial chronology of Dame Judi Dench’s career, and a tribute to her late husband Michael Williams. It includes a large picture of the bronze sculpture of them both by Meryll Evans, Sculptor, for the Theatre by the Lake.

Derwentwater and Keswick from Latrigg. The Theatre by the Lake is upper centre.
Picture by Tony Richards

“Set in the Lake District on the edge of the small town of Keswick and close to Derwentwater, it produces up to nine plays a year in its Main House (400 seats) and Studio (100 seats).
In summer a resident company of 14 actors presents six plays in a repertoire season that runs from May to early November. It also hosts festivals focusing on literature, film, jazz and outdoor pursuits and welcomes touring theatre, music and dance companies. It presents more than 600 performances a year and last year played to 130,000 people.” – Theatre by the Lake -Press Office
For further information tel 017687 72282, or see the website at

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