The Derwent Project

We thank God for the long and fruitful history of the Keswick Convention that has sought to inspire and equip Christians to love and live for Christ in His World. With the Lord’s blessing and your support in 2015 we took another exciting step through the purchase of the former Pencil Factory in Keswick.

This launched the Derwent Project, the refurbishment of the site to create a platform that extends our Ministry. It will provide a new integrated home for future Conventions, a venue for more regular teaching and training ministry, and a resource for churches across the region and beyond. In short, a beacon of Christian refreshment and sending out.

Our Goals


To secure the future of the three-week summer Convention on an integrated site in the centre of the town of Keswick.


To establish a new centre of operations for Keswick Ministries’ team


To expand the scope of Keswick Ministries by providing a conference facility for a range of activities at other times of the year, including training programmes and Bible-teaching events.


To make the conference facility available to churches in the UK and beyond, particularly serving Cumbria and the North (including Scotland).

The Derwent Project story so far

Since 2015, thanks to God’s guidance and provision through committed supporters like you we have already achieved a great deal:
We own the Pencil Factory (PF) site and have moved our offices from Skiddaw Street to the Rawnsley Centre.

This Spring we gained planning permission for the refurbishment of the site. We have already cleared unwanted and unhealthy trees before the nesting season so that work can commence later in the year.

We have tidied up and painted some spaces in the former Pencil Factory for children and young people groups during this year’s Convention. These are the first activities to move from marquees into the building.

Next steps for completing the Derwent Project

This Autumn we start work to prepare the site for the 2020 Convention.

This will involve demolishing old warehouses, the construction of the concrete base for the main Convention marquee, groundwork across the site for drainage, electricity and water. Then the installation of toilets on the ground floor of the Pencil Factory building.

After the 2020 Convention, we will focus on the full refurbishment of the Pencil Factory building – to create the space for all our activities and to do away with the need for many marquees at future Conventions.

The refurbished space will be used all year around by children’s and youth groups, by local church groups and for training and conferences.

The fundraising challenge

Thanks to the generosity of supporters like you and some Christian Trusts we now own the site and have enough money to get the next phase of work started.

With more funding we can do more in this first phase. In addition, we will need substantial further funding after 2020 to complete the refurbishment of the building.

How can you help?

If you are as excited as we are about the Derwent Project and its potential to multiply the impact of our ministry in the UK and around the world, will you make a generous gift today?

A one-off gift of £100, £250, £500, £1,000 or more could enable us to make significant progress towards our goal of holding the Convention in 2020 in one integrated site – giving us the opportunity to worship God together.

A monthly gift of £70, £50, £25 or whatever you can share… can ensure that we complete the refurbishment of the former Pencil Factory beyond 2020 and turn it into a vibrant home where you, your family and your church can receive spiritual refreshment and Bible teaching and training all year around.

Three reasons why you should donate to the Derwent Project...


To give more Christians of all ages opportunities to worship, study God’s Word and encourage each other during the Convention and throughout the year.


To inspire future generations of children and young people to follow Jesus, to love the Bible and to grow strong in their faith.


To ensure that church leaders, mission workers and Christians from all walks of life benefit from more training events and resources developed by Keswick Ministries.

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