Stepping out with the local ramblers

January 26 2018

Local walking enthusiasts are being invited to join Bristol Ramblers, a group who enjoy 300 led walks a year across Bristol.

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Local walking enthusiasts are being invited to join Bristol Ramblers, a group who enjoy 300 led walks a year across Bristol.

One of the largest walking groups in the country, Bristol Ramblers was founded in 1979 and has around 800 members. It is part of ‘The Ramblers’, a national walking organisation. 

A group of between 10 and 20 walkers attend each walk which take place on Sundays, Saturdays, as well as during the week and on evenings during the summer. Walks vary from a few miles over flat terrain, to 15 miles of hard hill walking in the Brecon Beacons, and although most are in the countryside there are also some town walks too. 

Sunday walks often take place outside Bristol and sometimes as far afield as South Wales, Exmoor, or Salisbury Plain. However, you do not have to be a car owner to enjoy these walks as there is a central meeting point in Bristol, where car-sharing is organised. Sometimes public transport is used, but this is often not feasible, and a couple of times a year coach trips are arranged. Bristol Ramblers also organises holidays ranging from long weekends to whole weeks away, usually in Britain, but occasionally abroad.

A recent Wednesday walk, called the Alan Burton Memorial Walk after a very active and well-liked member of the group, started in Westbury-on-Trym. This 11-mile circular walk along footpaths and lanes via woodland, parkland and alleyways saw the ramblers visit Badocks Wood, the River Trym through Southmead, Filton Golf Course, Purdown, St Werburghs, St Andrews, Horfield, Henleaze before returning to Westbury. Eleven people started the walk, though some chose not to do the whole walk and returned on the bus. 

The Bristol Triangular City Walk, developed and maintained by Bristol Ramblers, passes through many historic parts of the City, including Redland and Cotham. Details can be found on the Bristol Ramblers website.

Speaking of the group and the work that they do, Geoff Daniels, Publicity Officer for Bristol Ramblers, a keen walker said: “Bristol Ramblers is not only about organising and leading walks. We put a lot of effort into improving footpaths and developing walking routes inside Bristol and further afield into areas where Bristolians may wish to go walking. 

“In addition, Bristol Ramblers is involved in campaigning for improved parks and open spaces in Bristol, an uphill struggle in these times of austerity.”

Although residents need to join The Ramblers to become a regular walker with the group, people are welcome to come on three walks at no cost and no commitment to decide if joining is for them. If you enjoy walking for leisure and exercise, and you would like to walk with other people led by an experienced leader, visit their website http://www.bristolramblers.org.uk/ or contact Carew by emailing secretary@bristolramblers.org.uk to get involved.