Just across the lake from the Coniston Boating Centre is Bank Ground Farm, Ransome’s inspiration for Holly Howe, and one of the locations for the 1974 film of Swallows and Amazons. Bank Ground Farm is now home to the Swallows and Amazons Tearoom, so when we began organising the marathon reading, we hoped we could arrange to get our readers and visitors over the water to sample their excellent cakes and cream teas. And today, thanks to Jonathan, the owner of Bank Ground, and Captain Rick, the most dastardly pirate who ever sailed the oceans, we can announce free boat rides across to the cafe from the public jetty on the Coniston side.
The boat is small–just six people at a time, including the skipper–so it will be first come, first served, but space permitting, if you show the Captain your bookmark (pick one up at the reading) he’ll take you across the lake and bring you back again when you’ve been to the tearoom. If an ocean voyage isn’t to your liking, Bank Ground is walkable from the Boating Centre, round the top of the lake, or just a short drive away. The cakes are lovely however you choose to travel.