The 2018 Light the Lakes event takes place overnight Friday 22nd June into Saturday the 23rd June. Groups climb their chosen Peak from the 214 Wainwright Peaks in the Lake District and then a synchronised lighting of beacons takes place at 0300 hrs. People either climb their chosen peaks during the evening then settle in for the night before awaking and lighting their beacon then seeing in the dawn at the top before returning down the peak or climb during the night, light their beacon and then return down in the dark.
The father of Light the Lakes, PS Ian Davis organised the first event in 2012 when some 594 Police Officers, colleagues and friends climbed Wainwright peaks in the Lake District to raise money to support the orphaned children of murdered Surrey DC Heather Cooper and the event raised in excess £30,000.
Following what had been a devastating number of years for the police family, Ian decided to continue the format in aid of the charity COPS (Care of Police Survivors). The dream of Ian has been to cover all 214 Wainwright fells to light lamps in honour of our fallen colleagues. Whilst the 2012 event was the closest Ian has come to reaching this goal, it has not stopped him trying.
May 2015, Ian announced he was stepping down from organising the main event, although he still wanted to be very much part of it and will be attending Light the Lakes 2018 to climb his favourite fell (Pyke O Stickle). One of Ian’s strong supporters was previous Chief Constable of Cumbria Stuart Hyde, who himself has publically applauded the efforts of Ian Davis in starting the event and keeping the momentum going.
The baton for arranging future Light the Lake events has now been handed to DS Gary Hutchings, DS Vinny Wagjiani, PS Wayne Carter and Laura Darby who are hard at work ensuring Ian’s commitment and passion remains strong.
This year Light the Lakes event will be based at Brathay Hall, in Ambleside. This is a wonderful venue on the edge of Lake Windermere, which has supported us previously.
Last year’s event involved over 400 participants from Police forces all over the UK including PSNI as well as other organisations and businesses including the fire services and scouts. We are aiming to increase the number of participants for 2018 and illuminate all 214 peaks.