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Evesham Walking Festival takes big strides

Evesham welcomed ramblers from all over the country to its fifth annual Walking Festival recent. This year Evesham Welcomes Walkers took over the mantle of organisers of the festival in conjunction with the town receiving Walkers are Welcome accreditation. Twenty-two walking events took place over the five days as part of the biggest and most successful festival so far.

This year, organisers extended the range and type of walks being offered and included for the first time, a Nordic Walking taster and a linear walk over four days. Guests were able to visit Kemerton Lake Nature Reserve where a member of the Kemerton Conservation Trust gave a short talk. Another themed walk included a visit to Kiftsgate Court Gardens. Walkers explored the Pershore Avon Meadows whilst others climbed Bredon Hill to enjoy amazing panoramic views and walk through fields edged with poppies on a balmy summer’s evening.

For those who wanted something more demanding the organisers had arranged for a party to walk the Wychavon Way from Droitwich to Broadway over four days. The group of 13 was supported by a mini bus which transported them to the start each morning.
Many participants were returning walkers who had attended previous festivals and had so enjoyed the experience that they were returning to discover new places this year. A recent development is “festival baggers” who attend walking festivals around the country and the Evesham Walking Festival is now very much on their list, bringing in business for the town’s shops, restaurants, pubs and accommodation.

Glyn Hayter, from Evesham Welcomes Walkers explained that the group was delighted with this year’s outcome.

He said: “With over 350 walk bookings and 312 different people attending, this has been a very successful festival. It has been wonderful to see walkers come together and enjoy the amazing range of walks we have offered. It is also nice to see returning guests and new faces from as far afield as Colchester, Chepstow, Bridgend and North Wales. We are now firmly on the walking festival calendar and are also receiving requests to repeat walks that have been enjoyed in previous years. We look forward to 2025 and are already starting to plan an exciting programme.”

The festival in 2025 will take place in the last week of June. For more information about walking in the Vale of Evesham go to www.walkevesham.uk

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