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Due to the unpredictability of numbers attending each walk it will be appreciated if members advise the leaders by the dates shown. The leaders may wish to limit the numbers, which they feel, are manageable, taking into consideration car parking, lunch arrangements and the number of obstacles en route which could slow the walk. Additionally by leaving your telephone number you can be contacted in the event of cancellations etc.

A walk number that is underlined has been altered since its original posting or is a new inclusion

Earlier walk programmes have now been removed from the web pages to save space, but copies including the reviews going back to 2001 may be obtained from Stan

Walking Group Mobile phone numbers are : 0754 6069085 and 0752 2958435  -  Please note that the phones will only be operative on the morning of a walk to enable members who are running late, are lost or delayed, to contact the walk leader.  If one number does not work, try the other !

Just a brief reminder – if you are leading a walk, you need to make sure that you have
a Leader’s Pack containing First Aid, Phone and Safety Jackets.  They are held by Richard Hart and Anne Trott.  It may be that one of both of those people are on your walk so they will bring it with them but if not, you must obtain it.
The phone needs to be turned on before you leave home so that you know about any delayed or lost walkers, and then kept on during the walk.  Don’t forget to switch off afterwards and return the Pack to its owner.
If your walk involves roads or lanes with traffic, then you and your backmarker need to wear a yellow safety jacket.

And finally:  The committee thinks that in future all walkers should carry either on their person or in their rucksack, some form of identity with important details such as emergency contact numbers and Doctor’s details.  You will find an example attached with this programme.  Please adopt and use it.

After the success of the Winchcombe Way project we have a new challenge for 2018 – The Cheltenham Circular Footpath – a 25 mile walk around the outskirts of Cheltenham.  This was originally designed with the help of Bob Price and the Rotary Club in Cheltenham and was for several years a sponsored challenge which several Walking Group members completed in either one or two parts.  Now it’s your chance!  Bob has divided the walk up into 7 sections, which are circular routes, and the first is in January.  Will you take up the challenge?

JULY  2018

Walk  1238   Cheltenham Challenge 4

Date             Tuesday 3rd July.        7 miles.     Energetic.     Pub Lunch
Meet.         Hewletts Reservoir.     Grid. 975223.         0915 for 0930
Contact.        Bob and Kath Price.     01242 232527. week before.  
Directions.        In Cheltenham, take the Harp Hill Road from Junction of Hales Road and    
                       Priors Road on the B 4075   .
Details            We follow the Cheltenham Challenge Route via Ham and Colgate Farm to the A40, then join the Cotswold Way climbing to Upper Colgate Farm then returning to Hewletts via Northfield Farm. 2 long hills and several stiles.
Please visit www.thehewlett.co.uk   to choose your meal and give the order to Bob when you book on the walk. 

Note from Richard on 2/7/18

I’ve just heard from Bob -  because of the low numbers and the fact that some people have withdrawn because of the heat he is going to cancel Tuesday and do the walk later in the year.  Sensible I think.  However, he and I are going to do a walk-over of another section of the walk (at low level – no hills) instead.  You are welcome to join us if you would like


Walk  1239

Date   Thursday 5th July       4.75 miles Easy            Pub lunch
Meet        White Hart    Inn, Maisemore       GL2 8HY    Grid 814213    9.40 to order
Contact    Hugh    01452 780460  the week before
Details    We follow a bridle path on the north side of the River Leadon valley to Murrells End, then a gentle climb to the top of Overton Hill, before crossing the A417 and following footpaths back to the start. No stiles but some mud if wet.

Ten of us joined our walk leader Hugh at the White Hart Inn at Maisemore, with sun cream and hats a-plenty. We headed North West (so I am told…) walking bridle paths along the valley of the River Leaden, up to Murrell’s End where we had our shady coffee stop, watched over by several swallows on the phone lines above. Despite the hot dry spell, the one little boggy bit en route managed to make a mess of Kate’s shoes; this, and Betty’s melted chocolate biscuit, were the only down sides of this lovely summer walk. We had extensive views from paths which ran alongside fields of ripening wheat and barley and we stopped in the shade to admire Hartpury College horses performing in the distance before striding out (slowly and with frequent water stops in the shady bits – it was a very hot day…), to the top of Overton Hill, where 3 horses were greatly surprised as Hugh emerged from what must have appeared to them to be a hedge, having cut a swathe through the recently overgrown footpath for the rest of us. Butterflies abounded, and we missed our naturalists as technology failed to identify wayside plants, but a swift email brought satisfaction – thank you Pamela, for being on call! Downhill to the welcome sight of Maisemore pond where we disturbed a languishing grey heron, who took off from his perch when he saw us coming, eager as we were to get back to the pub for a well-earned drink and lunch. Tip of the day – put a water bottle in the freezer the night before a hot walk. Frequent sips of iced water were very refreshing on this hottest of days …  (Thanks to Shirley for the report and one of the photos, and to Stuart for the other three - SF)

Ray Mears foraging for broad beans?     (photo by Stuart)

Shirley looks up recipes for bean and thistle soup  
    (photo by Stuart)

Leave the shade? You're joking!  
    (photo by Stuart)

Wading through ripe oilseed  
    (photo by Shirley)


Date   Tuesday 10th July        Eckington   
Meet        Eckington Wharf picnic place   Grid 923423    for a 10.30 start
Contact    Mike & Jenny      01684 772194    the week before
Details    A stroll around the village.

Throughout our stroll today we were entertained by a peal of 5040 changes of Ambleside Alliance Major performed by the Vale of Evesham ringers on the bells of  Holy Trinity Church, Eckington.  We thought it might have been done for us – but probably not.

13 of us enjoyed this gentle stroll around the village today.  Jenny and Mike took us around streets not easily seen from the main road and told us about the history of the bridge, showed us where a Roman soldier had fallen and read us a poem by the war memorial.

We didn’t have the blazing sun of previous days but clouds made it a little sticky.  Ringing bells in ancient times used to be used to drive away thunder and lightning.  We hope it didn’t scare off the rain!

Many thanks to Mike and \Jenny for a delightful morning.  (Thanks also to Richard for the report and photos\ - SF)

By Eckington Bridge

Eileen greets a new stroller

Hidden Worcestershire

Shall we buy it?

Walk  1240

Date   Thursday 12th July     6 miles           Moderate                   Pub Lunch
Meet        The Fox Inn, Little Barrington.    OX18    4TB       Grid   192131   9.45 for 10.00
Contact    Calvyn and Steve            01684 296684    The week before.  
Directions    B4077 to Stow. A424 Stow to Burford, but after Wyck Hill    turn right onto minor roads signposted Rissingtons    and The Barringtons.    Follow road signs to the Barringtons passing Rissington Airfield. Drive through Great Barrington towards Little Barrington and the River Windrush. The Fox Inn is just over the bridge on the left.
Details    This walk has more bridges than Venice and more stiles than Versaci. It is a circular    route around the Windrush Valley. The walk passes through the Barringtons, Windrush village and the edge of the Sherborne Park Estate. It is a series of gentle rises and descents along a mixture of lanes, tracks, paths and field walking. It is likely to be damp and muddy in places.

This was the fourth time Calvyn and Steve were to embark upon this walk. Originally scheduled for earlier in the year, floods and mud had resulted in it being rescheduled for today, when bright  sun, temperatures in the high 20's, dust and  hard ground prevailed. Unfortunately the pub landlord had become suspicious of their earlier visits (long haired hippy type and a Welshman, aka Compo and Clegg), to suss out the area, and he insisted on money up front when ordering
food !
Once Steve had worked out which way up his money tin went,  both leaders donned high viz and Steve his old schoolmasters whistle ! Twenty of us set off under cloud, but this rapidly cleared to uninterrupted sunshine. We crossed the River Windrush for the first time, shocked at the water quality, opaque and grey, an unexpected sign of poor water quality. We duly noted the straw fox that adorned the ridge of a thatched barn and a motoring hedgehog in concrete, atop a masonry gate post. We  stopped again to admire the Barrington Estate and learn of its history from Steve, before heading on through beautiful Cotswold countryside. Our accompanying botanist/ornithologist/naturalist, Pamela, patiently fielding questions from all sides. How fortunate we are to walk with such a knowledgeable and patient lady - three cheers !
Wending our way onwards we crossed a tributary of the Windrush, bright clear and sparkling in the sun, as one day the Windrush itself might be ? However the zenith of Steve and Calvyn's organisational skills was marked overhead by the Red Arrows trailing red, white and blue smoke.  A fabulous Cotswolds walk in valley and on ridge, it was enjoyed by all.   For Ian and Kathy, presently  away in Spain, it was awwwsome!  (Thanks to Stuart for the wonderful report ant to our trio of photographers - SF)

The peasants are at the gates
!    ( Photo by Terry)

Flax?     (Photo by Terry)    

A bit of shade   (
 Photo by Calvyn)

Through fields of gold
   ( Photo by Pamela)

Walk  1241

Date   Wednesday  18th July     4.8 miles     Easy/Moderate  Own arrangements,
Meet        Newent Lakeside car park  (fee 80p)  Grid 722261,  09.45 for 10.00am,
Contact    Lesley   01452 84062 
01452  840602
week before
Details    The walk begins from above to the disused canal, through fields and occasional tarmac, towards the tiny arboretum and 'home'.  A couple of difficult stiles.

Eight set off, including a member of Newent U3a, towards the canal. Despite discussing canals in general, the second section, with head high nettles and mighty thistles etc., drew forth a muttered comment of "the jungle". However, after scrambling over a fallen willow tree and not falling into what water there may have been, the 'moderate' part of the easy ( no stiles ) walk was declared over!
A welcome break at St Anne's church, Oxenhall, showed good views and the finial of a former spire in the churchyard. This prompted a member to describe his annual job of memorial headstone testing. A child died in 2000 after a tombstone tumbled onto him and so these important safety checks are now carried out.
Then it was down a leafy lane to eventually reach the tiny Millennium arboretum, before lunch and home. (Hot and sunny weather)
Thanks to Hugh and Pete for the photos, and to Lesley, not only for leading, but for the report as well!

The old lock     (Photo by Hugh)

Is there someone there?    
(Photo by Hugh)

At St Anne's    
(Photo by Hugh)

Walk  1242

Date   Thursday 19th July    5.5m Moderate/Energetic                    Pub lunch
Meet         Main St. Elmley Castle                    Grid 981411                9.30 for 10.00
Contact    Pamela & Mary          01386 725547       the week before
Directions    Eckington Road   from Bredon, then right to Combertons and Elmley or  Bredon, Beckford, Ashton under hill, then Elmley.    Park in Main Street near pub.
Details    We walk from the pub through pastures, with views of the Malverns and Bredon Hill, loop through to Great Comberton and return towards Elmley.    A final steep climb onto Bredon Hill (not ‘the Wall’) and a gentle downhill route back to the pub.

Twenty cool, happy, relaxed chums arrived nice and early outside the Queen Elizabeth ready for this weeks adventure. Given the expected temperature the walk was reversed so that the hill came at the start while it was still cool.  (Hot and sunny weather)
The walk was to Great Comberton following a figure of eight pattern. No attempt was made on the summit, wise given the heat. A fair part of the walk was through the wood of even hill which provided shade and the view to Bricklehampton Hall, Pershore Abbey and beyond.
Brendon hill as always pleasant and never uninteresting.
As always I learn something new - a clattering of jackdaws.
(Collective noun for TUTA walkers anyone? )
As always lots of laughs over 5 miles and 783 calories (apparently). Thanks Mary and Pamela. for leading,  (And to Calvyn for the report also to Graham and Pamela for the photos - SF)

(photo By Pamela)

Cool!     (photo By Graham)

Blue skies    
(photo By Graham)

(photo By Graham)

Walk  1243

Date   Wednesday  25th July                6 miles                Mod/ Energetic                   Lunch:To be decided
Meet        Clanna Woods FC car park (very limited space)   Grid 584024 9.45 for 10.00
Contact    Terry and Margaret             01684 772278                      week before
Directions    A48.    App 4m past Lydney turn R at Globe Inn, Alvington.( GL15 6BA )A sp Hewelsfield and Brockweir.    After 1.5 miles Turn R at second crossroads , parking a short distance on R.
Details    An undulating walk through woods, fields, tracks, quiet lanes passing little hamlets. Over a dozen stiles and good views across the Severn, weather permitting

A baker’s dozen set off in fairly hot conditions, on a walk that provided quite a bit of shade.  There were a few challenges ahead, and Tony provided spare poles for any who wanted them.  The first challenge was a short steep climb out of Clay Wood access land onto a faintly marked path, from whence the going became quite easy.  We passed by Aylesmore Court with it’s smart self-catering barn conversions, and on to the pretty hamlet of Hewelsfield where we visited the church with its circular churchyard.  We soon approached the second challenge, two fields of tinder-dry oilseed rape, complete with nettles.  The final challenge was to find a stile out of the rape into a field of bracken.  Margaret stalwartly disappeared into the tall crop to find the overgrown stile, but in the absence of a tall flag as used by Italian tour guides, she remained invisible (and barely audible).  Margaret was found by the search party and we fought our way through the bracken, and breezed down the hill to our shady picnic spot.  It was plain sailing after that and we soon reached the picturesque Clanna Ponds and the end of our walk.  Many thanks to Terry and Margaret who made several visits to the area to seek out the published route.  Let us hope that the wet Spring and hot Summer that brought forth prickly and stinging vegetation will also lead to a good blackberry harvest.  (Thanks to Mike for the report and to Terry for the photos - SF)

Jungle patrol    (Photo by Terry)

Pretty, pretty!  
 (Photo by Terry)

Not lost - just confused  
 (Photo by Terry)

Skinny dip anyone?
    (Photo by Terry)

Walk  1244

Date   Thursday 26th July    5 miles Easy/Moderate    Picnic at Hugh's house
Meet        Apperley Village hall car park, GL19 4DP  Grid 867286  10.00 start
Contact    Hugh & Fran 01452 780460 the week before
Details    This is the reverse of a walk we did in March 17 through
Deerhurst and Deerhurst Walton. Two gentle hills, footpaths and country
lanes, some stiles.
Picnic at Hugh's house near the Village hall; he will supply beer, wine
and soft drinks. Hopefully the weather will be good enough for the garden!

Fourteen of us met in the car park of Apperley Village Hall – mercifully only a short drive from home. Many of us are getting a bit fed up with the heatwave, so we were pleased to see clouds in the sky, and not too hot a start to the walk, but the weather became hotter and more humid as the morning went on. The walk took us mainly across fields and along field margins, and the ground everywhere was hard, with cracks for our poles to get stuck in. The harvest has been early this season (and probably not too abundant) and there were many bales of straw creating a vaguely Monet-esque look. The fields of beans were looking very sorry for themselves, and were as much black as green. We had good views of attractive Deerhurst Church, and enjoyed coming across a couple of dozen newly-sheared alpacas. Fortunately, in view of the atmospheric conditions, some stretches of the walk were under tree cover, there was little climbing to do, and quite a few of the stiles were ex-stiles.

Thanks to Hugh and Fran for another enjoyable walk – and to Christine and Hugh for providing their comfortable garden for our picnic, and for the bottles of lager and cans of ginger beer that they kindly gave us.  (Thanks also go to Bob for the report, and to Graham for the photos - SF)

Nice hats!    (Photo by Graham)

Take it easy    
 (Photo by Graham)

All dried up  
 (Photo by Graham)

 (Photo by Graham)

AUGUST  2018

Walk  1245

Date   Wednesday 1st August                   5 miles               Easy                         Pub    Lunch
Meet                                          The    Nightingale, Worcester WR7 4QS      Grid 909532                9.30   for 10.00 start
Contact                         Jennie & Isabel    01684 772216 week before
Directions    From Tewkesbury B4080 turn right at junction onto   A4104 through                                    Pershore. At Pinvin junction   turn left onto A44 and    pub on right just after Sneachill Village sign.   
Details                            Flat walk   along footpaths and tracks with   good views especially
of   Spetchley Hall as we pass      through the   Estate.    5 or 6 easy stiles and railway footbridge.

Walk cancelled due to leaders indisposition. -

Walk  1246  The Isbourne Way  part 1

Date   Wednesday 8th August     6.5 miles  Easy/Mod           Picnic
Meet        Toddington church car park   Grid 035331        10.00 start
Contact    Richard & Eileen      01684 274197  the week before
Directions    From  B4077, turn into Toddington village, drive through and follow signs.
Details    We take half the cars and drive to the quarry car park above Cleeve golf club.  The walk then starts from the river source at the Washpools.  We can picnic at the church at the end of the walk and then take refreshment at the local pub or back at the golf club.

To give added interest and a focus to our walking, Richard and Eileen have organised a walk following The Isbourne Way tracking the River Isbourne from its source on Cleeve Hill to its confluence with the Warwickshire Avon at Evesham, a distance of some 14 miles, which they have split into two sections.

This being a linear walk 19 of us met at Toddington to do the first section and arranged car sharing to take 4 cars to the start of our walk at Cleeve Hill.  After all the intense heat of the last few weeks, we were delighted to have cooler weather, which was perfect for walking.  We descended to the wash pool and after the only slight incline of the day, continued downward passed Postlip Mill, the only remaining mill on our part of the route, where the path had been well constructed. After our welcome break for coffee we continued through the countryside briefly dipping in and out of Winchcombe and Greet before returning to Toddington  We were very grateful for a wedding taking place at Toddington Church which meant we could not lunch in the churchyard on return as originally planned, so had our picnic lunch en route.  What a life saver!!  It transpired that the total distance was 8.5 miles, albeit without hills, so we all agreed we deserved our drink at Cleeve Hill Golf Club.  Thank you Richard and Eileen for a wonderful walk with stunning scenery, excellent company and a great sense of achievement.  We look forward to the second half next month. (Thanks to Kath for the report and Terry for the photos - SF)

Where it starts - the Washpool on Cleeve Hill     (Photo by Terry)

Lovely old cottages        (Photo by Terry)

Break tine        (Photo by Terry)

Down the Hill        (Photo by Terry)

Walk  1247

Date   Friday 10th August      2 miles.  Easy.      Picnic or cafe lunch.
Meet            The Firs-Birthplace of Edward Elgar, now taken over by the National Trust.
                     Crown East Lane, Lower Broadheath,  Worcestershire WR2 6RH   Start 10.00
Contact      David     01684 292288        the week before.
Directions  From Worcester bypass A4440 turn left on Bromyard road A44, take 1st
                   right,   brown sign to Crown East. Birthplace is about a mile on RHS.
Details:      Free parking at Birthplace. Meet at 10.00 for guided visit, including video         
of Elgar's life and works, visit to Museum, Birthplace, English      Cottage Garden, study and sound garden.  If we are  lucky there might be a free concert!  Walk will follow.
Entry is free to  Birthplace for NT members, £7.50 for group members.

Today is the day that our long dry spell came to an end.  The 16 of us that assembled in the car park of the "Firs" (Elgar's Birthplace) opened our umbrellas for the first time in ages!  An unusual walk today - but then, David's walks are always out of the ordinary - we combined a most interesting tour of Elgar's Cottage, watched a short film about his life and achievements, and took a short walk around the area.  As the cottage is tiny, we were split up into small groups, so the walk element of our visit became somewhat fragmented, but none the less enjoyable for all that. The route is on a leaflet published by the National Trust and though we had a good soaking towards the end of it, our small party enjoyed it (and our super lunch at the Bell Inn afterwards)  Many thanks to David for arranging this unusual visit - we'll look forward to your next suprise!

Brollies up

Film show

All is gathered in!

That's the stile!


Date Tuesday 14th August               Bredon Villages
Meet           Car Park next to Bredon Village Hall            10.30 start
Contact     Nick   01684 772147    the previous week
Details       An easy stroll around Bredon and surrounding area.  

There were 27 of us on this warm and sunny day for Nick's tour around this lovely village.  We started by crossing the playing field, and Oh my! the folk here are so well served with a wonderfuly kept set of ammenities to suit all ages!  Over the main road to Eckington we went and, by way of footpaths through filds and woods we desended to the Avon, where we took a short break on yet another public space that Nick told us was the former quay for river traffic.  Onward back up to the church - lovely, and so well cared for -  then on to the tithe barn.  Very dramatic, a huge space but perhaps not originally a "Tithe" barn so much as a general storage barn so some say.  Our route now took us back to the car park past the Fox and Hounds pub to which several of us retired to enjoy a good lunch and merry companionship.  Many thanks to Nick for his usual faultless guidance and excellent commentary.

At the quay

Sunshine near the church

In the Tithe barn

Past the Fox and Hounds

Walk  1248  The Bath Skyline  - a combined walk with Bath U3A

Date   The Bath Skyline  - a combined walk with Bath U3A
Thursday 16th August         6 miles Moderate    Picnic lunch   
Meet        Landsdown Park & Ride  BA1 9BJ then bus to Bath railway station 10.30 start
Contact    Richard & Eileen   01684 274197    by the w/e before
Directions    Probably M5, M4, A46 and follow signs.  Allow 1.5 hours to P&R.  Meet at train station.  Don’t forget bus pass.
Details    A delightful walk around and above Bath, led by the Bath Walking Group whom we met recently on our Slad walk.

Our walk today was one with  one of the Bath U3A Walking Groups.  We met them on our Slad Valley walk a while back and they invited us to walk the Bath Skyline Walk with them.
11 of us joined 11 of them at Bath Spa station where we quickly removed all the waterproof gear we had put on because the threatened rain had passed and the sun was out.

The start was gentle, along the Bath & Avon canal but as we then ascended very steeply to the start of the trail, even more layers came off because of the high humidity.  Once there, the walk was delightful – across Claverton Down and then around the University to Bathampton Down – with splendid views of Bath with its terraces and crescents.  There were some difficult stretches through the woods with slippery stones and tree roots and by the time we made our way back down to the centre of town we were very weary after 8 miles.  However, a cream tea in a café overlooking the Abbey revived us before returning to the P&R and the journey home.

Our thanks to Roger Hurley from the Bath walkers for leading us so well.  We hope to invite them to Tewkesbury in the not too distant future.
 (Thanks also to Richard for his report and to Terry for the photos - SF)

The assembled cast     (Photo by Terry)

All the world's a stage!  
  (Photo by Terry)

Exit left . . .  
  (Photo by Terry)

And now our show is done  
  (Photo by Terry)

Walk  1249

Date   Wednesday 22nd August    6 miles  Moderate/Energetic      Pub lunch
Meet        The Star Inn, Ashton-u-Hill. WR11 7SN   G 997379       9.45 start
Contact     Mary & Pamela     .  01386 725547
Directions    B4080 from Tewks to Bredon, through Kemerton, Overbury and Beckford then left for Ashton-u-Hill.  Alternatively use A46 and to take turn to Ashton-u-hill.
Details    A walk from Ashton under Hill to Dumbleton Hill starting on the Wychavon Way - woodland, views of Bredon, Dumbleton Hall and village.  A fairly steep climb up Dumbleton Hill and one other short climb.   Two stiles and we have to cross the busy A46 (twice).
    The pub is not open until 11 am – so we need to pre-order food/. www.thestar-ashtonunderhill.co.uk. Please give me your order by Monday 20th.  We aim to be back for 1 pm.  Park in pub car-park.  Spaces also across the road.

21 of us assembled in the car park of The Star ready to enjoy the walk from Ashton to Dumbleton Hill on a blissfully cool morning.
We crossed the A.46 without incident and tackled the steepish climb ahead realising that it was still quite humid.
However coffee/water break was ahead and the views were spectacular reminding some of us of The Blue Remembered Hills of Potter.
We walked down in good spirits(Was there something in the coffee?) and enjoyed the beautiful parkland of the Dumbleton Estate. Young pheasants were beginning to show themselves and sheep were massing under the trees.
We were in good time for lunch and eventually crossed back over an even busier A 46.
Excellent service from the Staff at the Pub and everyone soon tucked in.
Many thanks to Pamela and Mary for a lovely peaceful walk on one of our local patches.  (Thanks also to Sonia for the report,. and to the ever faithful trio of Pamela, Graham and Terry for the photos - SF)

All in a row     (Photo by Pamela)

Stepping out    
(Photo by Graham)

Under the spreading . . .      
(Photo by Graham)

As far as the eye can see    
(Photo by Terry)

Walk  1250

Date   Wednesday 29th August     4.5 miles Easy                Pub lunch
Meet        Grid 784 061  Car Parking at Eastington          9.45 for 10.00
Contact    Stan     01684 293319     the week before
Directions    M5 South to Jn 13  Left dir Stroud - Ist R/bout  R and car park is immediately on left
Details    A level walk following  the defunct Thames and Severn canal as far as Ryeford and then return  (either on same path or another T B Decided!)  Carvery lunch at the Fromebridge Mill.

20 walkers were gathered at the lay-by to start this canal walk on an overcast, but warm day. It was a ‘there and back’ walk along the Stroudwater Navigation canal, so we were warned not to look over our shoulders as we walked along!
We were by no means the only people using the footpath, there was a constant stream of walkers, runners and bikes ‘coming through’. It is a popular place.
The first part of the walk was along a non-navigable stretch, which meant that the water lilies were in profusion and bulrushes and wild flowers decorated the banks. After we went through the culvert under the railway bridge we arrived beside a large lake, named the Ocean, formerly a fish pond. Here the canal became navigable, and we were impressed to come across the volunteers from the Cotswolds Canal Trust clearing the undergrowth, and Cotswold Boatmobility, who organise boat rides for people with motor and learning disabilities.
Stan told us much local history as we went along, it would seem that this area had been very important in WW2, there were even 12 pillboxes with gun emplacements to protect vital factories in the area.
After a break at Ryeford lock sitting on an old barge, we turned back. At 11:30 we stopped and had a minute’s silence to remember our friend Anne Scott, at the time of her cremation. Then shortly after that Stan and Ken were interviewed by a reporter from Radio Gloucester for her Sunday morning programme. The rest of the walk was less eventful but equally enjoyable. Thank you Stan for another informative and interesting walk in lovely surroundings.  (Thanks to Andrea for the report - but she has bravfly neglected to say how she and Hugh survived a painful wasp attack! SF)

At the Ocean

At St Cry's church

Our barge seat at Ryeford

Nutshell bridge

Walk  1251

Date   Thursday 30th August      6 miles  Moderate/Energetic    own arr for lunch
Meet    British Camp CP WR136DW . CP costs £4 or there is limited roadside parking nearby.  9.45 for 10.00 start
Contact    Betty & Graham Tel: 01684 594331 week before
Directions    Welland , Little Malvern Priory. British Camp CP is located junc A449 & B4232
Details    We walk to Ledbury following the contours alongside the British Camp via the Giants Cave and the Eastnor Park Obelisk (coffee stop)
From Eastnor village our undulating route finally descends into Ledbury where there are numerous tea shops & pubs near the Church.
Return: The 44B First Bus service back to the British Camp picks up by the Market House every hour from 13.44 to 17.43. (Remember Bus Passes)

Message from B&G - We will be away a good deal in August, please leave messages on the answer phone which we will pick up when we return on Sunday 26th

This walk had a last minute change from that described in the programme, the 44B bus from Ledbury proving elusive yet again.  23 of us met at the Wyche to pre-order food then walked northwards through woodland towards St Anne's well. The weather was perfect , sunny but not too hot, the trees begining to take on autumnal colours. Following the contours round to North hill we eventually joined Lady de Walden's Drive and then onto the highest point of our walk The Worcestershire Beacon. Today the interest was not so much in the magnificent views but in a group of intrepid characters intent on launching themselves into space, suspended from the flimsy fabric of a Paraglider.  Descent back to the Wyche ended a very enjoyable walk with many thanks to Betty and Graham. (Thanks also to Richard for the report, and to our trio of photographers this week of Pamela, Graham and Terry - SF)

Great walking up here!     (photo by Terry)

At St Ann's Well    
(photo by Pamela)

The assembled cast     
(photo by Graham)

Lovely views    
(photo by Graham)


Monday 3rd September
The walking Group Annual Meeting
Ashchurch Village Hall
2.00 p.m.
 Reports – Election of Officers – Statistics
Tea and cakes – The previous year in pictures

Our usual bunfest had  a  special significance this year, as our long serving Leader, Ken, decided to hand on his cammander's baton to another, and the universal and popular opinion was that our future leader would be Sylvia  (applause! applause!)   We were all sad, of course, that Ken was standing down from the office, but we were at the same time universally appreciative of his outstanding contribution to the group over the years and happy that he continues to join us on our walks

Ken and presentation portrait

Walk  1252  Cheltenham Challenge 4

Date   Tuesday 4th September.    7 miles.   Energetic.   Pub Lunch
Meet.       Hewletts Reservoir.   Grid. 975223.     0915 for 0930
Contact.      Bob and Kath .   01242 232527. week before.
Directions.    In Cheltenham, take the Harp Hill Road from Junction of Hales Road and    
                       Priors Road on the B 4075   .
Details            We follow the Cheltenham Challenge Route via Ham and Colgate Farm to the A40, then join the Cotswold Way climbing to Upper Colgate Farm then returning to Hewletts via Northfield Farm. 2 long hills and several stiles.
Please visit www.thehewlett.co.uk to choose your meal and give the order to Bob when you book on the walk. 

There were 10 of us today on this 4th Stage of the Cheltenham Challenge.  Bob had been out on the hill for several hours the day before clearing paths and cutting brambles and we were glad of his hard work on this warm, dry morning.

Our route took us south from the Hewlett reservoir to the tiny hamlet of Ham and then zig-zagged and climbed across fields above Charlton Kings to Colgate Farm and the edge of Dowdeswell Wood.  From here we followed the Cotswold Way until we descended to our cars  over a series of difficult stiles (including one notorious double  which
The Hewlett Arms must have been glad to see us because we were the only ones in there.  The food and welcome was good and we felt we had earned it.
had the short-of-leg struggling).  We saw lots of horses and cows today, who all ignored us, except one beast who bellowed loudly but kept her distance

.Thanks to Bob and Kath for leading this walk so well.  (Thanks to Richard for the report, and to Bob for the photos - SF) 

up we go    (photos by Bob P)

 a bit of a rest

great style!

autumn sun   


Date          Our aim is to walk along the former railway embankment and to visit the                Cholera Burial Ground, followed by a stroll to the site of the former Cholera Hospital where we may receive some local advice.  After the walk, there is the opportunity to eat at the Muggery with its unique atmosphere.  We hope you will voluntarily join us there.   It would be appreciated if those coming by car offered lifts. Please use toilet facilities before arrival.  The walk is gently uphill on rural footpaths and downhill [the latter mainly on a pavement].  There is one very short climb up a stone stairway to the embankment.  It is a genuine 2 hour stroll max.

John’s Stroll today was in Upton upon Severn and as ever, it had an historical theme. We walked from the car park to join the old track of the Tewkesbury to Malvern railway, whose demise was not due to Dr Beaching but to simple economics.  Out next stop was the old Cholera burial ground built for the 50 town’s people who died in the great epidemic of   1832.

Then, with some trepidation, we made our say up Cut Throat Lane, but were relieve at the top to be met by Betty & Graham Mealand who welcomed us into their garden to view the ancient meadow behind which once cotained a Health Barn, where Cholera sufferers were treated.
Now the drizzle had turned into annoying rain as we made our way back to the cars, ironically, past the modern Health Barn which is the Upton Surgery.  Many then retired to The Muggery for lunch.

Many thanks to John and Jan for another interesting and well organised Stroll  (Thanks to Richard for the report - SF)

on the line

nice walking

damp at the burial ground

wet in Graham's garden

Walk  1253

Date   Thursday 13th September     6 miles Moderate          Pub lunch
Meet        Courtyard of Dog and Partridge  B49 5BB.   Alcester.   Grid  088 572.    9.30 for  9.45
Contact    Mike & Jenny   01684 772194    the week before
Directions    A46 / A435   (Arrow)  R at 1st Rbout into Evesham St.  (Alcester).  1st  R Newport Drive,
2nd  L Bleachfield St.    Dog and Partridge is on the left.   Park in Bleachfield St.  FREE  car park just past the pub on the left ( or limited street parking.)
Details    Primrose Hill and Oversley Wood.   Easy walking on roads, tracks and woodland paths, (might be muddy in places.)  One stile, several small ups and downs, one longer up hill in the wood.  406 ft ascent in total.The route can be shortened if it is wet.   Lunch can be ordered when you book.  The gate to the pub yard should be unlocked so we can use the toilets on the right in the yard.

Sixteen of us met in Alcester town centre on a beautiful, sunny early Autumn morning; it had been quite cold (10degC) on the way there, but quickly warmed-up as the morning went on. This was a new area for most. The walk went south of the town and, after crossing the River Arrow and the A46, became a circular walk around Primrose Hill to within sight of Oversley Castle (a Victorian house with attached crenelated tower folly). We then joined part of the Arden Way before traversing Oversley Wood, which is a remnant of native English forest, and then back to Alcester. Wildlife of note seen included a grass snake and maybe a deer. This was a very scenic and attractive walk on a lovely day.   (Many thanks to Mike and Jenny for leading this new and interesting route, to Hugh for his report and to Graham for the photos - SF)

The long and winding road     (Phots by Graham)

Oversley Wood

Is this the jungle?

Where next?

Walk  1254

Date   Wednesday 19th September      5.5 miles Moderate          Picnic
Meet        Ken and June’s house, Pamington     GL20 8LS      9.45 start
Contact    Ken & June     01684 772564     the week before
Directions    From Tewkes take A46, turn right at Aston Cross onto B4079 – half mile to house
Details    We walk to Oxenton, Teddington back to Pamington
Tracks and up Oxenton Hill and down to Teddington back to Pamington


Walk  1255

Date   Thursday 20th September     6 miles.  moderate/ energetic  Pub lunc
Meet         Carpenters Arms, Miserden GL6 7JA  Grid 937088  9.30 to order food
Contact     Jim & Margaret  01684 296773    the week before
Directions    From Birdlip take the A4070 towards Stroud taking the left turn at Fostons Ash and then shortly the first turning left sign posted to Miserden. Follow signposts to Miserden.
Details          From Miserden we pass a couple of small lakes then up to Winstone, on to Syde and Caudle Green before returning to the Carpenters  Arms. Woodland walks with good views from  Syde and Caudle Green.               One or two steepish bits.


Walk  1256   The Isbourne Way  part 2

Date   Wednesday 26th September       7.5 miles   Moderate        Picnic   
Meet        Evesham Viaduct Meadow car park (£4) WR11 4SU   Grid  033432    Meet at 9.30
Contact    Richard & Eileen     0106841 274197  the week before
Directions    Do not take Evesham by pass. Car park entrance is on left after crossing river.
Details    After meeting we will take half of the cars to the starting point at Toddington Church and walk back to Evesham.


Walk  1257

Date   Thursday 27th September        4 miles Easy            Café Lunch     
Meet             Far Peak Climbing Centre    GL54 3JL    Grid 113145   9.45  for     10.15am start.
Contact       Steve    01684 295438   the week before.
Directions    A40 to Northleach turn on to the A429 towards Cirencester. One mile south of 
Northleach turn left to join a road signposted Ablington and Bibury. Follow this    road for about 300 yards and then turn right onto a long driveway that leads to the Far Peak Climbing Centre, park up near the small industrial units.
Details          A circular walk around and through Northleach, with a visit to   Hampnett Church.
A mixture of field and road walking. Only 1 stile, mostly flat with 2 small climbs around Hampnett, separated by a coffee break. Lunch will be taken in the Hayloft Café and a range of toasties, jacket potatoes and drinks will be available. 


Thanks to all walk leaders for your hard work. 


Nearly all the photos on this page have been reduced in size and resolution to save both space and bandwidth.  Should you want a copy of any of the photos, Stan would be happy to supply a copy of the original file - just quote the walk number and the photo title.


The Walking Group has a mobile phone to be used before and during walks for emergency contact — see paper programme for number.

We are affiliated to the Ramblers Association and the membership card above may be used to obtain a 10 percent discount on walking gear in most local outlets.

If you require a paper copy of the walking programme, there is a charge of  £4 p.a., payable at the Walking Group AGM or at the U3A enrolment meeting. If you have internet access, then all information can be obtained by email, free of charge.

Walks are graded to give some idea of what to expect:

Stroll: A short walk at an easy pace with frequent stops.

Easy: Undemanding and mainly level with occasional gentle ascents or descents. There may be a few stiles.

Moderate: Some uphill/downhill stretches - unlevel walking - several stiles.

Energetic: Some longer steep hills and rough ground - may be many stiles.

Please book with the leader of the walk by the date given and arrive in good time before the start to boot-up and order lunch etc. Be sure to cancel with the leader if you are later unable to take part. Wear suitable shoes/boots and clothing for the walk and do not over-estimate your abilities. An attendance fee of 50p is charged for each walk attended. Dogs are not allowed on walks.


Walk Talk  

The Ordnance Survey has a service now that enables you, for an annual subscription of £19.99, to download and print off extracts from the OS maps that we use for our walks - anywhere in Britain!  - no more having to fold and unfold vast sheets of paper in the wind and rain - bliss! (Stop Press!  There is now an "App" for smart phones that does all kinds of amazing stuff!)  A real bargain - for a free trial go to -  http://www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/osmaps/




a) Carefully read the walk description to ensure that you are capable of walking the route at a moderate pace (about 2 miles per hour) without risk to health. Attention should be paid to the EASY/MODERATE/DIFFICULT grading as well as to any references to steep climbs, stiles, etc.

b) Dress sensibly. Make sure that you have suitable clothing and footwear for the weather expected. A walking pole or stick can be of great help.

c) Remember to carry any medications that you might need. Carry food, and water, especially on hot days.

d) Follow instructions given by the leader. Keep those in front and those behind you, in sight all the time.

e) Keep to the route indicated by the leader: do not devise shorts cuts, etc.

f) Walk in single file on roads and heed any advice about crossing roads given by the leader.


g) Classify your walk as STROLL/EASY/MODERATE/ENERGETIC. Mention any steep climbs and stiles.

h) Limit your walk to a maximum numbers that you think you can safely manage, given the nature of your walk.

i) Have a co-leader to act as back-marker: count the party at the start and at suitable points during the walk

j) Carry a first aid kit or ensure that someone else in the group has one.

k) Set a pace of about 2 miles per hour plus coffee and lunch/tea stops. Ensure that those finding the pace difficult have sufficient time to rest and recover, even if this is not favoured by more energetic members.

l) Carry a map, the group mobile phone and GPS receiver to make emergency calls and give exact locations.


To download a copy of the Leader's Walk Plan Form (In Adobe Acrobat Format ie PDF) — Click on the following link FORM



To go to further advice for leaders  -  Click on the following link Advice


To go to The Tewkesbury U3A main site click here; Tewkesbury U3A





Sylvia (Group Leader) 01684 437462

E Mail / 


Tony, (Administrator) 01684 276960  

E Mail  tonyandjenniferbarrett@btinternet.com


Richard, (walks coordinator) 01684 274197

E Mail / richard.hart13@btinternet.com


Webmaster . . . Stan Fagg stanfagg@freeuk.com    Updated 13 th  September  2018

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