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Wednesday, 24 September 2014

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Commercial space flight pioneer visits Cumbria

One of the men leading the drive to launch commercial flights into space is heading to Cumbria to reveal more about the ambitious venture.

Stephen Attenborough photo
Stephen Attenborough

Stephen Attenborough, commercial director of Virgin Galactic, is among the speakers heading to this year’s Kendal Calling Academy.

The academy is a joint scheme between organisers of the festival, which takes place at Lowther Deer Park near Penrith, and University of Cumbria.

The Kendal Calling Academy aims to provide three days of talks and debates from across the arts and culture sector.

Kendal Calling takes place over the weekend of August 1-3.

Virgin Galactic’s commercial director Stephen Attenborough will speak extensively on the Saturday, about their tests flights in California and their plans to introduce the first commercial space flights.

A spokesman for Kendal Calling Academy said: “This is a real coup for the festival and will provide some fascinating insights into this exciting chapter of space travel.”

Kendal Mountain Festival will also be featured during the academy weekend. Other highlights include panels with The Idler Academy, musician and cultural commentator John Robb and acclaimed journalist Andrew Mueller as well as writer and broadcast DJ Dave Haslam and Sarah Walters, from the Manchester Evening News, who has done much to champion the north west’s music scene.

Cumbria University academics Tony Randall and Alizon Brunning will be delivering masterclasses in journalism and creative writing too.

Students from the University of Cumbria who are on courses including event management, journalism, creative writing, and film and TV will be working at the festival to gain professional experience.

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