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  1. Ramblers Report Historic Footpaths At Risk Of Being Lost Forever

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    Ramblers recent report reveals a serious backlog of paths waiting to be recognised as public footpaths. Any historic paths not officially recorded as public rights of way by 2026 will be extinguished, meaning thousands of well-trodden paths, and other potentially useful routes would be lost forever.

    The ‘Paths in Crisis’ report revealed more than 4,000 paths are on a waiting list to be determined as legal rights of way in England and the Ramblers estimates this backlog will take more than 13 years to clear if processed at the current rate.

    To help combat this problem the Ramblers has been working with landowners, land managers and local authorities to find ways to make the process for recording paths more efficient, consistent across the country, and less contentious, helping to claim as many historic paths as possible before the 2026 cut-off date.

    The group’s recommendations were put forward to Government and have now been included in the draft Deregulation Bill. These proposed changes to rights of way legislation are part of a package of measures which, if taken as a whole, will benefit walkers and landowners alike. The aim is to simplify rights of way legislation, meaning the process for claiming paths will be easier so that they can be added more quickly, helping to clear the substantial backlog.

    Ramblers chief executive Benedict Southworth said,The proposed legislation has been carefully put together by representatives from landowners, paths users, and local government – including ourselves and the NFU – who have worked together for over three years to simplify the law around rights of way for the benefit of everyone. This carefully crafted solution should make it easier for historic paths to be added to the definitive map – the official record of all public paths. Many of these paths have existed for hundreds of years – they are an ‘inscription on the landscape’ made by generations of people going about their business, and are as much a part of our heritage as our ancient monuments and historic buildings. By adding them to the official map they cannot be blocked off or built upon and are protected for future generations to enjoy.” 

    “Our network of paths provide an important role connecting people to green spaces, allowing them to travel to shops and to schools and are enjoyed by millions each year. This unique network attracts tourists from around the world and provides a vital contribution to the economy – last year alone visitors to England’s outdoors spent £21 billion. We hope that this new legislation will make it easier for our historic paths to get the protection they need so that we can continue to walk and enjoy them.”

    Follow The Ramblers:

    Facebook www.facebook.com/ramblers

    Twitter www.twitter.com/RamblersGB 

    The Ramblers is Britain’s walking charity; at the heart of walking in Britain, working to promote walking and protect the places where people walk. It has a grass roots network of over 25,000 volunteers who work tirelessly for a walking Britain. For over 75 years it has helped build and protect Britain’s 140,000 mile long path network. It runs over 45,000 walks a year and campaigns for better walking routes and more walking opportunities – www.ramblers.org.uk.

     

     Ramblers Footpath Sign

  2. Stay Safe In The Countryside Walking With Livestock

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    As the weather warms up and more people head out for a walk in the countryside, Ramblers is reminding people to take care when walking through fields with livestock.

    “Now is the perfect time to go for a walk in the countryside and explore our wonderful network of paths” said Nicky Philpott, Ramblers’ campaigns and policy director. “However, the countryside is also a working environment and it’s important to be mindful of that, especially at this time of year when farm animals are rearing their young.”

    “Be sympathetic to farm animals rearing their young and give them space” says NFU livestock board chairman Charles Sercombe. “If you feel threatened by animals protecting their territory, or young, do not run, move to the edge of the field, and if possible find another way round.”

    “The countryside is a beautiful place to walk in” added Sercombe. “However, it is a working environment where animals graze. So it’s important to take care and be mindful of your surroundings so you can fully enjoy the experience.”

    Ramblers has outlined some basic tips to follow below, you can find out more about walking near livestock – and with dogs – by reading the Countryside Code and Scottish Outdoor Access Code.

    Do
    • Try to avoid getting between cows and their calves
    • Be prepared for cattle to react to your presence, especially if you have a dog with you
    • Move quickly and quietly, and if possible walk around the herd
    • Keep your dog close and under effective control on a lead around cows and sheep

    Don’t
    • Don’t hang onto your dog – if you are threatened by cattle, let it go as the cattle will chase the dog
    • Don’t put yourself at risk – find another way round the cattle and rejoin the footpath as soon as possible
    • Don’t panic or run – most cattle will stop before they reach you, if they follow just walk on quietly

    For further safety information visit Ramblers’ advice for walkers section. For all your outdoor clothing and equipment needs, make to check out the whole of the Sub Zero Store.

  3. Join The Walking Revolution

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    Ramblers ‘Get Walking Week’ is supporting Britain on Foot, a campaign to encourage more people in Britain to get active in the great outdoors. If you know somebody who would like to ‘Get Walking’, then point them to our home page to make sure they stay warm and comfortable with Sub Zero performance clothing and accessories.

    From 4-11 May, the Ramblers will be hosting Get Walking Week – Britain’s biggest ever short walks festival – with thousands of walks across GB, aiming to get 100,000 people to their feet. The Ramblers knows that getting more people out walking will lead to healthier and happier lifestyles, so this May they’re making it easier than ever to take those first steps. During Get Walking Week there’ll be thousands of free short walks of 5 miles or less led by experienced walk leaders all throughout Scotland, Wales and England, taking place in countryside, cities, and along the coast.

    Walking has endless benefits, especially brisk walking: It’s good for your health; it lifts your mood; it is a fun, social activity that almost anyone can do without any specialist gear or equipment; it’s easy to fit into busy lifestyles; and you can start slowly and build up gradually – just to name a few.

    Benedict Southworth, Ramblers chief executive, said, “We want people all over Britain to join the walking revolution and take their first steps towards a healthier and happier lifestyle. We’ve seen so many different people benefit from regular walking and we know it can make a positive impact on people’s lives.”

    In England, Ramblers groups will be leading plenty of walks for all to enjoy. Walking for Health, England’s largest network of health walk schemes, run by the Ramblers and Macmillan Cancer Support, will also be inviting people across the country to walk with their local schemes, to help them get walking and keep walking.

    In Wales during the weekend of 4-6th May Ramblers Cymru will be hosting the Big Welsh Walk – inspiring families to take to their feet for some quality family fun outdoors. A flagship event in Cardiff’s Bute Park with family friendly activities will kick of the festival on 4th May.

    In Scotland there’ll also be a variety of short walks to choose from, and with it being the Year of Natural Scotland, there is no better time to get outdoors and get active in beautiful surroundings.

    For more information, visit www.ramblers.org.uk/getwalkingweek; Facebook – www.facebook.com/ramblers; Twitter – twitter.com/RamblersGB

  4. Get Walking Fit In 2013

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    Pull on your boots, pack your rucksack and start planning now to make the most of the UK’s big push for everybody to enjoy walking. If the gym has been your route to fitness, then look outdoors to make the most of what the UK’s countryside can offer. We’ve got all the gear you’ll need to stay warm, comfortable and safe even in the hills.

    Get Walking Week, 4 – 11 May 2013, is Ramblers’ short walks festival designed to help the nation discover the wonder of walking. Get Walking Week is part of 2013’s Britain on Foot campaign which is a year-long call to action to get the British public fitter, healthier and happier in the great outdoors. In Wales during the weekend of 4-6 May, Ramblers Cymru will be hosting the Big Welsh Walk – inspiring families to take to their feet for some quality family fun outdoors.

    In England, Walking for Health, which is hosted by the Ramblers in partnership with Macmillan Cancer Support, will be inviting people across the country to join short, free and friendly walks with their local schemes, to help them get walking and stay active. It’s England’s national network of health walk schemes, offering free short walks over easy terrain led by trained walk leaders. The brainchild of GP Dr William Bird, who started leading health walks from his surgery in 1996, Walking for Health is now a national programme supporting around 600 local schemes across England that deliver a range of group walks for over 75,000 regular walkers.

    Throughout Scotland, Wales and England, Ramblers’ groups will be extending invitations to join them on a variety of guided walks through countryside, cities and along the coast which are five miles or less. All of the walks will be led by trained walk leaders providing the perfect opportunity to discover the freedom, fresh air and fitness that comes with exploring the great outdoors.

    Photo: Walkers above Croyde Bay, Devon. Credit: Neville Stannikk

  5. Free Routecards For Walkers

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    Walking is a great way to get fit and healthy, and the Ramblers has launched Ramblers Routes; a collection of Britain’s best walks from the experts. This is an exciting new online library of high-quality walking routes across Britain, to entice the adventurous spirit into the outdoors. Ramblers Routes has been launched as part of a new-look Ramblers website with exciting new features for members, volunteers and everyone who walks.

    These routes have been created for walkers by Ramblers volunteers. Each route is developed and thoroughly checked by volunteers who have been walking the length and breadth of Britain to ensure they’re of the highest quality, before being given the Ramblers’ expert seal of approval.

    There are hundreds of free routes for anyone to enjoy simply by registering on the Ramblers’ website with hundreds more premium routes available as a special benefit for Ramblers members. This growing collection of walking routes caters for all walkers, from short urban walks to introduce new people to walking; walks suitable for families and pushchairs; routes taking in history, coast or woodland, to long-distance, challenging hillside walks for more experienced walkers.

    Benedict Southworth, Ramblers Chief Executive, said, “This online library of high-quality walking routes has long been an ambition of the Ramblers. So it is with great pride that we launch Ramblers Routes for everyone who loves to walk, or would like to get started. These routes offer the opportunity to walk along inspiring and interesting trails of various lengths across Britain, whenever you please. It is also an opportunity to share the unrivalled expertise of Ramblers members when it comes to walking.”

    Each route has an online routecard, with step by step descriptions, points of interest and advice on how to get to the start point. It also features a wide choice of mapping layers including Ordnance Survey Landranger and Ordnance Survey Explorer maps with the option to print the route and download GPS data.

    The new Ramblers website is great for all things walking; whether you’re an experienced hiker or you’re just starting out, whether you like to walk alone or in an organised group, explore countryside, cities or coast, so visit www.ramblers.org.uk.

    The Sub Zero Store has everything you’ll need to make the most of your walking days and holidays so start filling your basket now.

    The Ramblers will be showcasing the new Routes Database at the Outdoors Show at London’s ExCel Centre from 17 – 20 January 2013.

  6. Help To Create Inspiring Walking Routes And Build Your Skills With The Ramblers

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    Britain’s Ramblers are looking for walkers with a keen eye for detail to help quality-check its growing library of walking routes for independent walkers.

    Ramblers volunteers across Britain have been developing walking routes as part of a new project – Ramblers Routes – which will offer walkers access to hundreds of inspiring self-led routes to enjoy with family and friends.

    But a great walking route takes more than just one walker, so Ramblers are looking for regular walkers to help check routes on the ground to ensure they are interesting, easy to follow, safe and graded to the right walking ability.

    Route checkers road-test the route description and map for each walk, ensure the route matches any special features – like being child or dog friendly or having easy access – and carry out a simple risk assessment.

    You can check routes in your local area or in your favourite walking destinations and there are free route checking and development workshops and online training available for Ramblers members and walkers keen to get involved.

    “Route checkers are a really important part of creating quality walking routes” said Ramblers Routes Project Manager Justin Bend. “Even if they have been checked by the person who developed them, routes also need to be checked thoroughly and risk-assessed by a different person.”

    “All our routes will have the Ramblers quality stamp, meaning walkers can enjoy them with confidence” adds Justin. “We also want to make sure the routes are appealing and attractive, so it’s always good to have a fresh eye on something.”

    Find out more about checking or developing routes by watching the Ramblers Routes video or register as a route checker for the opportunity to improve and expand your existing walking skills.

    Ramblers have also proposed a fantastic future for England’s National Trails with its new vision document National Trails: a fantastic future. Creating a charitable National Trails Trust is the best way to support, develop and promote the 13 National Trails in England and ensure they reach their full potential, with Local Trail Trusts to help manage the trails on the ground. The government currently plans to hand over responsibility for the trails to hard-pressed local authorities and voluntary groups, but without a national champion there is a real threat the quality of these long-distance walking routes could seriously decline. You can show your support by donating to our National Trails Appeal to help continue campaigning to secure the long-term future of Britain’s most treasured walking routes for generations of walkers to come.

  7. Winter Walks Festival With The Ramblers

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    Join one of hundreds of walks with the Ramblers this holiday season as part of the ever popular Festival of Winter Walks. This year there will be more choice than ever as the festival expands to include over three weeks of events across England, Scotland and Wales, with walks starting in the build up to Christmas and marching right into the New Year.

    Ramblers’ volunteers put on these walks to make the most of the wonderful winter scenery on offer in Britain and there is an open invite for anyone to join in, share their love for walking and discover the benefits of being outdoors as you walk with the Ramblers into the new year.

    Simon Barnett, Director of Walking Programmes and Promotions at the Ramblers said, “With hundreds of walks led by experienced volunteers exploring the best of the winter scenery, there’s no reason to stay indoors this winter. All walks are free to join and there will be something to suit everyone, so find a walk near you and join the Ramblers with this inexpensive, fun and social way to enjoy the festive season.”

    From short festive walks to sup on mulled wine in cosy pubs, festive wintry jaunts and heartier rambles to explore crisp frosted landscapes, there will be plenty on offer for you, your family and friends to enjoy. Walks are already lining up and there will be more uploaded every day as the festive season gets closer. Just a few of the walks on offer include:

    England: Join a Christmas Day walk in Welwyn, Hertfordshire with the Ivel Valley Ramblers; take the chance to walk of the Christmas Day feasts with a ‘non-stop’ boxing day stroll with the Isle of Wight Ramblers or start the New Year with a ramble though Newstead Abbey grounds via the Robin Hood Way with the Rushcliffe Ramblers.

    Wales: ‘Burn off your calories for Christmas’ with Pontypool Ramblers; Join a ‘Turkey Trot’ with the Meirionnydd Ramblers; a leisurely 5 mile walk with Taff Ely Rambler sin Cardiff Bay; or walk to the top of Skirrid mountain with the Lower Wye Ramblers on the 1st day of 2013.

    Scotland: Try an easy, scenic walk from South Inch to Buckie Braes with the Perth & District Ramblers; A social walk in the run up to Christmas Day with the Strathtay Ramblers from Aberfeldy along the river and old rail track to Grandtully with a stop for warming soup or easy, festive walking with the Kirkcaldy Ramblers along the Coastal Path – where a prize will be awarded for the best decorated hat & rucksack.

    For details on specific walks or to find out more about the Festival of Winter Walks visit: www.ramblers.org.uk/winterwalks

    Winter Walks Festival With The Ramblers

  8. Enjoy One Of Hundreds Of Winter Walks With The Ramblers

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    Winter is a superb time to enjoy Britain on foot and, even though our summer is still lurking about, there are great opportunities to embrace the winter, wrapped up warm and in good company. One way is to join one of hundreds of walks with the Ramblers this holiday season as part of the ever popular Festival of Winter Walks.  This year there will be more choice than ever as the festival expands to include over three weeks of events, with walks starting in the build up to Christmas and marching right into the New Year.

    Ramblers’ volunteers put on these walks to make the most of the wonderful winter scenery on offer in Britain and there is an open invite for anyone to join in, share their love for walking and discover the benefits of being outdoors as you walk with them into the New Year. From short festive walks to sup on mulled wine in cosy pubs, festive wintry jaunts and more challenging hikes to explore crisp frosted landscapes, there’ll be plenty on offer for you, your family and friends to enjoy.

    The festival programme typically includes:
    • Walks across England, Scotland and Wales
    • Hundreds of walks under five miles
    • Festive-themed walks
    • Walks for people in their 20s and 30s


    Use the Group Walks Finder to search for walks in your area.

    The Ramblers is Britain’s walking charity. It works to make it easy for everyone to walk, whether in countryside, cities, hills, coasts and on or off the beaten track. It has a grass roots network of over 17,000 volunteers who work tirelessly for a walking Britain. For over 75 years it has helped build and protect Britain’s 130,000 mile long footpath network, it runs over 38,000 walks a year, and campaigns for better walking routes and more walking opportunities.

    Follow Ramblers on Facebook www.facebook.com/ramblers

    Enjoy one of hundreds of winter walks with the Ramblers this holiday season as part of the ever popular Festival of Winter Walks.

     

     

     

  9. Mountain Bothy Maintenance In April & May

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    Through the months of April and May the Mountain Bothy Association will be conducting maintenance and repair work on a number of remote shelters it looks after. Ramblers and walkers have been advised by the association to take back-up shelters and tents if travelling near to the bothys where work is planned.  The bothys that re affected by the repair work and the dates when they may be out of action are as follows:

    • 6 – 9 April, Strathan
    • 14 – 15 April, Gregs Hut
    • 14 – 22 April, Meanach
    • 24 – 28 April, Strabeg
    • 30 April – 6 June, Taigh Thormoid Dhuibh (Raasay)
    • 1 – 5 May, Shenevall
    • 7 – 13 May, Usinish (South Uist)
    • 18-20 May, Peanmeanach

     

    For further information please visit the Mountain Bothy Association website www.mountainbothies.org.uk

     

  10. Wales Coast Path in the Top Ten!

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    The Wales Coast Path is the longest continuous coastal path around a country, winding its way through 870 miles of stunning coastal landscape from the outskirts of Chester in the north to Chepstow in the south east. The route will take walkers from the mouth of the River Dee, along the north Wales coast with its seaside towns, over the Menai Strait onto the Isle of Anglesey, from the Llyn Peninsula down the majestic sweep of Cardigan Bay, through Britain’s only coastal National Park in Pembrokeshire, along miles of golden sand, via Gower with its stunning scenery, along the waterfront of Cardiff Bay and Cardiff, the capital city of Wales, to the market town of Chepstow.

    5th May 2012 will see the official launch of this monumental project and events will continue throughout the summer as communities take the opportunity to hold their own celebrations; listings will be available on a Wales Coast Path website to be launched in early 2012. Big Welsh Coastal Walks will be organised by Ramblers Cymru. These will be a series of led walks, suitable for all levels of fitness, along the Path in what is expected to be one of the largest mass participation events ever seen in Wales.The whole path will be accessible to walkers and, where practical, some sections will also be suitable for cyclists, families with pushchairs, people with restricted mobility and horse riders.

    It’s tipped by Lonely Planet as one of the World’s top ten destinations for 2012 – www.lonelyplanet.com/europe/travel-tips-and-articles/76854.

     

    Link up on Facebook and Twitter for news and stories about the Wales Coast Path:

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Wales-Coast-Path/140486052706861

    http://twitter.com/#!/WalesCoastPath

     

     

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