Thousands of people have been left inspired to do something different after the first Durham Adventure Festival.
The three-day event began with adventurer Dave Cornthwaite making a grand entrance on a longboard before discussing his latest project in which he is attempting to complete 25 journeys – each a minimum of 1,000 miles long – using different forms of non-motorised transport.
Other speakers included world-renowned mountaineer Andy Cave, who opened the festival sharing his experiences from 3,000 feet underground in the Yorkshire coalfields to the summit of some of the world’s highest mountains, and Elise Downing, who spent 301 days running 5,000 miles around the coast of the UK.
The festival saw Gala’s ground floor transformed into a basecamp with a tipi, pop-up craft beer bar and businesses such as Cotswolds Outdoor, Waterstones and Durham Climbing Centre offering advice.
Urban athletes from Abandoned Playgrounds wowed spectators with their spectacular stunts, including a blend of free running, bmx and skateboarding – as well as walking across a highline directly above the audience.
Families also flocked to the event to enjoy the festival’s film schedule and to have a go at the climbing wall set up outside the theatre.
Saturday night saw a huge crowd turn out to hear cyclist Mark Beaumont share the highlights and challenges from his world record breaking journey in 2017.
Cllr Ossie Johnson, Cabinet member for tourism, culture, leisure and rural issues, said: “The first Durham Adventure Festival was a great success and we know thousands of people enjoyed the speakers and activities on offer.
“We hope the event has left people feeling motivated to get outside and create their own adventures and we look forward to hearing their inspirational stories in the near future.”