Henley-on-Thames has been accredited as a Walkers Are Welcome Town, the second town in Oxfordshire to achieve the status.
It has much to commend is as a destination for walkers. It is on two long-distance paths: the Thames Path national trail and the Oxfordshire Way, as well as the Chiltern Way Berkshire Loop and the Wokingham Way. It is on the edge of the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and is at the hub of a rich network of well-marked paths. The town itself is on the railway and is on a bus service to Reading, High Wycombe and Oxford. It has a host of cafés, hotels, pubs and bed and breakfasts, all ready to welcome walkers.
The town’s committee hope to persuade the Great Western Railway, Salters Boats and the local bus companies to cooperate in enabling walkers to come to Henley and to use the services to enjoy linear walks.
There is plenty to see and do in the area, including the National Trust properties of Greys Court and Nuffield Place, the River and Rowing Museum and the Kenton Theatre.
The committee includes people who are active in the Ramblers, the town council, the visitor centre, the Chiltern Society, local businesses and Nordic walking.
Visit the town to enjoy a quiet walk by the river or the bluebell woods of the Chilterns, or venture further onto the Chiltern escarpment for fine views. There is plenty of variety and interest.
Photo: Temple Island
Full details of this year’s Annual Get-together and AGM , which will take place from 12th – 14th October 2018, can be found at http://walkcromer.co.uk/walkers-welcome-annual-get-together-2018/
Walk Cromer say “Walk Cromer are delighted to invite you to this lovely part of the world – we have boundless seas, wide open skies, clifftops, beaches, historic buildings, towns and footpaths galore!
Several National Trails pass through or link from Cromer, making us the ideal centre for a few days away on a walking holiday, and late season walking can be particularly glorious.
We are located on the very Eastern edge of Britain with good public transport links by both bus and rail – and we aim to make your visit well worthwhile.”
As with the very enjoyable event in Hebden Bridge last year, they have arranged an opportunity to turn attending the get together into a walking holiday.
There is a special rate for the get together if you book by June 30th, to aid final planning all bookings are requested by August 31st.
One of the most successful walks during the recent walking festival organised by the Boroughbridge group was, with the help of the local Hightimers drama group, the annual Ghost Walk.
Members of the Hightimers portrayed characters from Boroughbridge local history including Lady Lawson Tancred who set up one of the first women’s land army groups during the first world war, Archie White who was a recipient of the Victoria Cross(pictured), The white lady of The Devils Arrows, three monolithic standing stones from just outside Boroughbridge, and a knight who was killed during the 1322 battle of Boroughbridge.
Taking place over the Easter break the new walks,working with the local community in the villages of Copgrove and Helperby were well received. Sadly the last day encountered terrible weather but still a few hardy souls turned out.
Plans are already in the pipeline for next years festival.
Dursley Welcomes Walkers vice-chairman Dave Ashbee, joined forces with local traders to answer 10 general knowledge questions each day for 5 days on their home county of Gloucestershire. The quiz was live on air and hosted by Mark Cummings of Radio Gloucestershire. Many towns and companies have taken part in the morning quiz and some of the questions were quite challenging but a lot of fun. The team thoroughly enjoyed the experience and had a great time playing along with Mark on BBC Radio Gloucestershire.
Following earlier news of their nomination, the Boroughbridge group of Walkers are Welcome have won a best event Community Award for the three day walking festival they organised in 2017.
Collecting the award, Barry McCallum thanked the community for voting for the Walkers are Welcome group, saying how much the success of the whole event had been due to the hard work put in by all the members of the group.
News submitted by Stocksbridge Walkers are Welcome:
The Ramblers recently held a competition to find the UK’s Best Neighbourhood Walking Area Award. After making the shortlist: the football equivalent of Stocksbridge Park Steels reaching the third round of the FA Cup, we were part of an online vote for the winner. In the vote, Hastings Old Town got 21% of the votes, Stocksbridge was a close second with 19.5%. We are obviously disappointed not to have won but we are delighted we made it to the final and finish as runner-up in a close finish. We were the only town in Yorkshire to achieve the short-list: this which says a lot about the wonderful walking country that is on our doorstep. We would like to thank everyone who voted for us. As in Strictly Come Dancing, the best does not always win the popular vote. The competition gave us the opportunity to create a higher profile for both our town and Walkers are Welcome as a group, demonstrating the potential of local media ‘ to ‘sell our message’. At the same time it was fun to reinforce the message about the importance of walking for improved health and well being.
The Ramblers is already inviting nominations for the same award in 2019, so if you think your area deserves to be recognised, why not put your area forward for recognition.
After all you’ve nothing to lose!
Anyone wanting information or advice about how to go about can contact us via our website
This month the national committee considered the accreditation application for Middleton-in-Teesdale, County Durham. “A model application,” exclaimed Chairman, Sam Phillips and everyone agreed.
Middleton-in-Teesdale has a population of just 1,100 but has managed to pull together a group of ten people from all areas of walking and tourism in their area including the Responsible Tourism Lead, Shane Harris at the North Pennines AONB Partnership. Shane is particularly pleased to have another Walkers are Welcome town in the North Pennines AONB.
This small charming town, almost in the middle of nowhere, provides a vast array of footpaths and walks both within the town and out into Upper Teesdale. This part of the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty offers walkers a peaceful escape into a landscape of impressive waterfalls, such as High Force, green dales, heather clad moorland, traditional hay meadows and beautiful woods. For historians there are the remains of the area’s lead mining industry etched in the ground to explore. For botanists, there is the ‘Teesdale Assemblage’ – a group of twenty internationally important plants including the famous Spring Gentian. For the birdwatcher, a vast array of bird life such as the curlew, lapwing, and black grouse; and for geologists all the wonders of a UNESCO Global Geopark with its globally important Earth Heritage. The area offers something for everyone.
Middleton-in-Teesdale is already working closely with nearby Walkers are Welcome towns Alston and Barnard Castle, also not too far from Kirkby Stephen and Sedbergh. This is an area where the counties and cultures of Cumbria, Co. Durham, and North Yorkshire merge.
Pictured High Force shortlisted by BBC Countryfile Magazine Awards 2018 in the Landmark of the Year Catagory.
Kirkby Stephen and Stocksbridge Walkers are Welcome towns have both been shortlisted for The Ramblers Best Walking Neighbourhood Award. Voting is open until 13th March at http://www.ramblers.org.uk/Get%20involved/Campaign%20with%20us/Britains%20Best%20Walking%20Neighbourhood%20award?utm_source=walk%20mag&utm_medium=
‘Nestled in the Upper Eden valley, Kirkby Stephen is a Walkers are Welcome town with attractive historic buildings and cobbled yards. Amenities are easily accessed by pedestrians, with well-maintained footways. The town also has links to long-distance trails including Wainwright’s Coast to Coast and Lady Anne’s Way.
It’s the little touches that make this town particularly enjoyable to explore on foot, from the large planters lining the streets to eye-catching displays of herbs and vegetables. A particular highlight for residents and visitors alike is the Poetry Path, which celebrates the beautiful Eden Valley and describes the area’s farming heritage through a series of inscribed stones, placed along a network of ancient lanes.
Frank’s Bridge dates from the 17th century and is popular with families, providing a safe space for children to feed ducks and enjoy picnics. The Northern Viaduct Trust Path also offers an accessible all-weather route along a disused railway.’
Situated on the edge of the Peak District in the Upper Don Valley, Stocksbridge is a former steel town that now boasts Walkers are Welcome status. Much of Stocksbridge is subject to a 20mph speed limit. Pavements are maintained and streets are well lit. Numerous paths lead directly to the town centre, while other walking routes criss-cross the town. In many cases, walking is the quickest option for making a journey.
Many streets are lined with trees, hanging baskets decorate buildings and planters have been placed at each of the entry points to the town. Interpretation boards provide local information to visitors. This all helps to give walkers an enjoyable experience.
For those looking to walk further afield, the Trans Pennine Trail passes close to the town. This coast to coast route is popular with walkers and cyclists alike.
“Walking the Transpennine Trail towards Barnsley is an unglamorous stroll, but it cuts through history like a knife. Here we are walking by sites from the Industrial Revolution and the post-industrialisation that knocked this place for six, and still reverberates like a struck gong. Walk by the site of the Oaks Colliery disaster – still the biggest mining disaster in UK history – and pass over Stairfoot Roundabout, where all those railway lines used to converge.”’
* WORKING TOWARDS A LITTER-FREE BAILDON.
Local residents in Baildon have set themselves to rid Baildon of litter. In total 87 bags of litter were collected in January from various locations in Baildon. Further litter picks are being arranged for 3/4 February and 3/4 March.
* BAILDON WALKERS ARE WELCOME GROUP IS DELIGHTEED TO HAVE BEEN SELECTED TO BE ON THE LONG-LIST IN THE RAMBLERS BEST WALKING NEIGHBOURHOOD IN BRITAIN COMPETITION.
* BAILDON WALKERS ARE WELCOME START A NEW PROGRAMME OF “SECOND SATURDAY WALKS”. On Saturday 10 March, the first of a new monthly series of “Second Saturday Guided Walks will start with a walk entitled “To Menston for Memories and Munching”. For full details of this walk go to Baildon Walkers are Welcome website at www.baildonwalkersarewelcome.org and check our our What’s On page. All will be welcome. (Photo of view towards Menston).
Kirkby Stephen & District Walkers are Welcome are working with their town council and sculptor Diane Lawrenson to raise funding for a life-size bronze sculpture for the town representing the spirit of Lady Anne’s Way.
This stunning limited edition bronze maquette pictured above captures the spirit of the indomitable Lady Anne Clifford (1590 –1676) with her steely determination walking the Lady Anne’s Way long distance trail through old Westmorland written by Sheila Gordon. The sale of these limited bronzes at £3,500 each will contribute to a new full size ‘Lady Anne’s Way’ sculpture in Kirkby Stephen.
“Lady Anne travelled through this region with a vision for its future. Building, restoration and care for the inhabitants, providing schools, churches, almshouses, while at the same time, in other areas of our country, people were struggling and starving brought about by the English Civil War.” Diane Lawrenson December 2017
Please contact Kirkby Stephen it you are at all interested in this new project