In March Lancaster Litfest was forced to cancel its 2020 festival due to the coronavirus pandemic.

But with the help of an Arts Council England support grant the festival was able to commission three digital projects during the summer.

The first of these was ‘Walking Solo’ for which two writers, Jenn Ashworth and Polly Atkin, made podcasts of walks in the North West.

Then with two great examples to follow, Litfest opened the invitation to everyone in the region to make their own.

A very high quality of podcasts about lockdown walks soon started to flood in.

Litfest has now decided that the three best podcasts on the theme of Walkin Solo are Williamson Park, My Exercise Yard by Mary Ainsworth; The Magic Cattlegrid by Loren Cafferty; and Borrowdale Valley by Tara Vallente.

All three podcasts will be available for free download and texts on the Litfest website from today at

Keswick resident Tara takes the listener on a walk down Borrowdale Valley, and makes use of simple sound effects to create an authentic sense of place.

Jennifer Dobson, one of the judges, said: “I particularly liked Tara Vallente’s podcast, Borrowdale Valley.

"I identified with it strongly, enjoying the great feeling of space it gave me.”

The judges were Jennifer Dobson, until recently manger of Waterstones in Lancaster; Karen Lloyd, award-winning writer and environmental activist; and writer Beth Pipe, who is also known as The Cumbrian Rambler.

The project is run by the Litfest, the Lancaster and District Festival.