Stars of The Archers have praised the friendliness of Cumbrians during a visit to the area as part of a theatrical tour.

Lucy Fleming and Simon Williams, who play Justin and Miranda Elliott in the long-running BBC Radio 4 rural soap, have been in the county performing. During a visit to Keswick yesterday they spoke about how much they thought of the town.

Simon said: “I came to Keswick years ago, it’s just wonderful. I love it here, it’s so beautiful and everyone is so friendly.”

And Lucy echoed his praises, saying: “Keswick is lovely. I don’t know it at all and it’s delightful to be here. It’s lovely, we’ve just walked down to the lake.”

The couple, who are married in both The Archers and in real life, are keen environmentalists and they visited the charity West Cumbria Rivers Trust’s new office and information centre on Lake Road. Lucy called the new premises “fascinating” and “very well set out”.

Simon added: “It’s fabulous. I love anything when people show concern for the future generation and our heritage. We have to look after it.”

Jodie Mills, director of West Cumbria Rivers Trust, said she appreciated the couple’s visit and the interest they showed in the charity’s work.

The pair, from Henley-on-Thames near Oxfordshire, will appear in one last performance of Posting Letters to the Moon , a story based on wartime letters sent between Lucy’s mother, Brief Encounter actress Celia Johnson, and her husband Peter Fleming, brother of James Bond author Ian Fleming. While here, they are staying in the Lorton area.

They performed in Glenridding Public Hall and the Keswick Alhambra Cinema over the weekend and will be at the Ennerdale Centre, Ennerdale Bridge tomorrow.