It’s been a month or two since we last spoke – has anything much happened? I kid of course. We’ve unveiled our line up for this year’s adventure and so we have lots to talk about! It’s been a busy few weeks of finalising details, adding even more acts to the bill and filling you all in on what we have in store this year but it’s great to finally have a chance to sit down and write to you all.

We’ve been so pleased with the reaction to the bill – one of our best in our opinion! Each night will culminate in huge singalongs, whether that be the high notes of ‘Rotterdam (Or Anywhere)’ with Paul Heaton & Rianne Downey or the arms round your mate’s belter of ‘Don’t Look Back in Anger’ with Noel Gallagher. We’re excited to (finally!) welcome back The Streets – they first headlined back in 2009 and there’s been a few mishaps since but we’re delighted they’ll be bringing the Saturday night party this year. Our biggest headliner to date comes on the Sunday night! Closing the weekend this year will be Paolo Nutini, a man we’ve long wanted to join us at Lowther, and we’re sure will bring touching moments and dad dancing in equal measure.

The headliners don’t stop there this year though! Fresh off the back of their sell out UK tour – Keane will stop by to air the classics in their Kendal Calling debut. Those of you who are regular attendees will know Kendal isn’t defined by one genre and we always love seeing a big pop show take to the Main Stage (see Melanie C in 2023, Years and Years in 2019) and this year is no different as we welcome 00s icons, Sugababes!

As variety is the spice of life – we’re trying something a little different as arena comic Russell Howard will open the Main Stage on Saturday afternoon! A good way to ease some of you back in after what we’re sure will be a heavy Friday night of singing Oasis tunes. Parklands will also have northern favourite Paul Smith take to the stage on Sunday so we won’t be short of a laugh across the weekend! Stay tuned for the full comedy and cabaret line up as usual in The Soapbox of course.

Shall we address THAT booking then? Yes, that is Gary Neville you see on the poster. The Manchester United legend will be making his debut on the decks over the Kendal weekend with our long-time pal Tim Burgess. We had already asked Tim if he’d be up for a DJ set in Parklands this year and he said, ‘I’ve got an idea!’ – a quick phone call later and we’d got an England international on the bill. An added bonus was that it made that leaked poster a little bit less believable…

We always pride ourselves on the depth in the bill, with interesting things to see and do at all times, while just wandering the site sometimes can be a visual spectacular in itself, we’ve lots of special moments and brilliant acts across the weekend! The Reytons & The Snuts – two of our most requested acts will both make their Main Stage debuts this year. We couldn’t have Kendal Calling without The Lottery Winners, they continue to move up the bill as they’ll be headlining Parklands! Temples will bring their psychedelic sounds to the Woodlands stage. Shy FX, Phil Hartnoll from Orbital and Craig Charles all return to take us late into the night. We’ve even got The Untold Orchestra coming to play three separate sets around the site, across the weekend, devoted to ABBA, Stevie Wonder and Queer Icons.

Of course, we always like to bring a few ‘weird & wonderful’ bookings as Dick and Dom return, The 900 will play a set of covers from the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater soundtrack, Shaun Williamson brings back Barrioke and Alan Fletcher (also known as Neighbours’ Dr Karl Kennedy) will take to Parklands.

Now honestly, there really is too much to cover from the line up in this one letter and so we’d encourage you to have a listen to our official playlist below and get familiar with it all as there are some real gems down in the small print.

Our weekend in the fields is as much defined by the visual aspect as well as the musical one; each year it takes a huge crew to assemble our wacky ideas and merge them with the beautiful landscape we call home. Our planning for Lost Eden is fully underway as it begins to emerge from the undergrowth for 2024. We’re happy to tell you The Magic Teapot will be returning for some acoustic evenings around the open fire – and this year you’ll actually be able to get a tea in there!

Many of you are already asking about the theme for Kendal ’24 – we’ve been enjoying all your guesses – our favourite of which has been Christmas! Maybe one year we’ll do Christmas in the fields, but we’ve got something a little different in mind as we set out on this year’s adventure…

Last year, we had The Lathums play a very special set in Tim Peaks Diner. Thanks to Tim Burgess and his team’s magic, this was recorded and pressed immediately to vinyl, ready for sale on Sunday morning. We’re really excited that we’re going to be repeating this project this year, but which artist will play the coveted slot in Tim Peaks?

Ticket wise, we are currently well ahead of where we were at this point last year which is absolutely brilliant – we’re headed for another sell out year in the fields! Your support is never lost on us and continues to drive us to provide the best weekend possible for you all. As a heads up, we’ve got around 25 units left in Deer Lodge so for those of you looking for a few extra home comforts, we’d recommend getting your skates on!

Although we’d imagine a lot of you haven’t quite planned your route to the fields – we thought we’d take this chance to remind you of our coach services alongside the shuttle we run from Penrith station, making the show easily accessible via train too. Two thirds of the festival’s emissions come from audience travel and so we are on a mission to get as many of you here on public transport as possible.

That about wraps us up on our updates at this point in time but we will be back soon with more as our plans for the summer begin to take shape!

Take care, and we’ll see you in the fields!

Andy, Ben & The KC Team