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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.


Walk  1265

Date  Thursday 1st November     7.5miles        Mod/Ener        Pub lunch
Meet        Witcombe Roman Villa car park  GL3 4TW  892146     9.30 for 9.45 start
Contact    Terry & Margaret           01684 772278                the week before
Directions    M5 to J11A,  A417, A46 L at Toby Carvery then take 1st turning R on narrow lane to car park about 1/4 m.
Details    Several steep parts, a few stiles, some fields, a bit of  lane walking and a majority of woodland tracks on the Cotswold Way, .
There are good views also options to shorten the walk if required. 

Margaret promised all 18 of us a TREEmendous walk! It certainly was! Our spirits were not at all dampened by a bit of drizzle as it dried up fairly soon. Before we set off, we stopped to look at the remains of the Roman Villa - not much left to admire now, but the picture of it looked marvellous.
Our route took us through gorgeous beech woods up to Birdlip, following the Cotswold Way, stopping to rest and admire the lovely views en route .We even spied a brave little scabious still flowering even on November 1st.  Soon after found us trekking across our first muddy field of the season. Terry choreographed a new dance in celebration - wiggle, shuffle, get- the- mud- off - your - boots dance ...very fetching!  Crossing between two reservoirs we saw a lone lady angler stood patiently .. .hoping for a catch.
Altogether a wonderful walk, Margaret and Terry, thank you. Perhaps we can do it again  .. .a good summer walk in the lovely shady woods.  (Thanks to Anne T for the report and to our trio of photographhers:  Bob W, Calvyn and Terry  - SF)

Autumn leaves    (Calvyn)

Woodland snack     (Bob W)

Cotswold scarp    (Bob W)

Coming down to Whitcombe reservoirs     (Terry)

 **** Wednesday 7th November****

“Desperately Seeking Santiago“
An Illustrated talk with recollections and anecdotes of their 500 mile  Pilgrimage  across Northern Spain to Santiago de Compostela.
Given by Ian and Kathy.

                          £4.00 to include Tapas, Wine and the 50p U3A donation
                Any profits go to Air Ambulance                         

                       Apperley Village Hall     10.30
 Phone Ian or Kathy on 01684 290542 the week before to book.


Walk  1266

Date Thursday 8th November      5.5 miles Energetic     Pub lunch
Meet        The Yew Tree, Conderton GL20 7PP    Grid  965371     9.45 start
Contact    Mary and Pamela     01684 850433    the week before. Food orders by 3rd
Directions    Bredon – Kemerton – Conderton
Details    A walk from the village, following the contour of Bredon Hill to above Ashton under Hill then fairly long pull up the hill and eventually down through Overbury Park and  Conderton orchard.  Three stiles.
    n.b.    No loos at start.  Park along road by pub or on main road.  Back by 1.00 p.m.  Pre-book food please from www.yewtreeconderton.co.uk and give order when booking on walk. 

24 stalwart walkers started from Conderton in heavy rain, but fortunately it cleared in time to see great Autumn colours stretching across to the Cotswolds.
On the early part of the walk Pamela introduced us to a new crop, Phacelia, grown as green manure,that attracts bees and other insects. Another instance of care for the natural environment on the Overbury land could be seen on the field edges that were tilled to encourage wild flowers to grow.
At the second coffee break Andrea found an unusual piece of wildlife in an opened beech nut,that of 4 ladybirds hibernating!
Towards the end of the walk we passed through Conderton’s Community orchard set up in 2012 to improve the existing apple,pear and plum trees.
A great walk even in blustery conditions and a welcome pub at the finish.  (Many thanks to our leaders, Sonia for her report and the photographers; Graham and Bob - SF)

I think it has stopped!    (Graham)

Is this the way down?    (Bob)

Chatting over the garden wall?   (Graham)

Age old temptation ?     (Gtaham)

Walk  1267

Date   Wednesday 14th November   5.75 miles  Moderate  Energetic Own arra’nts for lunch.
Meet:         St Michael & All Angels Church, Snowshill Rd,    Broadway WR12 7AE.
                      Grid 095374         9.45 for 10.00  
Contact    Graham & Betty 01684594331  week before
Details    Undulating circular walk follows Cotswold Way to Broadway Tower via     
Coneygree Lane (once main rd to London)Good views to the Malverns before descending to Broadway for lunch where there are a variety of places to eat & sup.
Why not visit the Ashmolean Museum ( an offshoot of Oxford’s own) after lunch?ygree Lane (once main rd to London)Good views to the Malverns before descending to Broadway for lunch where there are a variety of places to eat & sup.
Why not visit the Ashmolean Museum ( an offshoot of Oxford’s own) after lunch?

A really super walk led by Betty and Graham – 24 of us set off eagerly (and in sunshine!) from the parish church of St. Michael & All Angels and joined the Cotswold Way which led us gently uphill.  Endless golden pastoral views and on a coffee break we savoured ‘the sweet especial rural scene’ of St Eadburgha's church (the original parish church of Broadway) nestled in the valley.  On to Broadway Tower, stopping at the memorial to the bomber crew who came down in 1943.   Mike B. then reminded us of the history of the tower built in 1798 by the then Earl of  Coventry whose family home at Croome could be seen from it (a signal could be seen by staff at Croome to alert them of the family’s imminent return from London – and to get the kettle on!).  Finally down through rolling fields, the hawthorn laden with bright berries, past a little orchard with grazing flock (with tup) and back into the town.

Many thanks to Betty and Graham. (Report by Pamela photos by Graham)

The destination      (Graham)

Lovely late autumn colours

Made it!  

Mind the moles!

Walk  1268

Date  Thursday 15th November   4.5 miles Easy/Moderate   Pub lunch
Meet        Farmers Arms, Guiting Power  Grid 095247         9.30 for 10.00
Contact    Anne    01684 294859  the week before
Directions    B4077 and turn right just before Ford.  Follow signs for Guiting Power.
Details    Mostly tracks and paved surfaces.  Gentle slopes.

On a lovely Autumnal day 13 brave souls joined "I'm in Charge" Anne in the car park of The Farmers Arms in Guiting Power.
Food booked and paid for, register taken and orders issued, "Yes Anne", it was time to follow our leader .......... down the wrong lane. So much for our map reading course!  Once on the right path we enjoyed a most pleasant walk along lanes and  tracks, over streams and through woodlands.quirky signs, a stone frog that looked like a large stone, and gave us a description of the origins of Power, Guiting and the influence of the Knights Templar's in the area. In the village of Temple Guiting once stood a Preceptory. It  was a medieval monastic house of the Knights Templar in Gloucestershire, England. It was founded around the middle of the twelfth century but closed in 1308-1309.
Did you know the red, cast iron telephone boxes were made in Scotland, in Stirlingshire?
The coffee stop was supplemented with lovely views, and Anne's jolly, Jelly Babies.
A punctual arrival back at the pub enabled us to relax with good food,company and ale
Thanks for a lovely, informative walk Anne.(Thanks also to Ian for the report and to Stuart for the photos - SF)

Anne's in charge!!    (Stuart)

Well on the way

Made in Scotland . . . !

This way . . . ?

Walk  1269

Date   Thursday 22nd November      4.2 miles  Moderate    Pub lunch
Meet        The Shutter Inn, Gotherington  GL52 9EZ  Grid  958297   9.30 for 10.00
Contact    Andrea and Bob.       01684 294676    the week before.
Directions    Cheltenham road from Teddington r’bout. Turn left  to Gotherington  after about 2 miles. The pub is on your right after about 500 yards.
Details    Through Woolstone to Overton and back, via rough pasture, woodland and lanes. We may well meet cattle, horses and sheep. Great views at the top in all directions. Two interesting churches.

24 met at the Shutters on a frosty and unexpectedly sunny morning.  A welcome change from the snow and rain of the day before.   We walked across fields,  taking action to avoid cattle with calves. Then on to Oxenton church for our coffee stop in the sun.   Up on to Crane hill for good views in all directions then back through muddy fields for our lunch.  A short walk but the stiles and mud made us feel as if we had enjoyed a good mornings exercise and thoroughly deserved our lunch. (Thanks to Jenny B for the report and to Terry and Shirley for the photos - SF)

Congregation    (Terry)

Alternative transport

Pause for a breather

Frost in the shade

Walk  1270

Date   Wednesday 28th November    Moderate/Energetic     Pub lunch   6.2 miles
Meet        The Red Lion, Ilmington, CV36 4LX     Grid:  4212244     9.15 for 9.45 start
Contact    Tony & Jennifer         01684 276960 by the previous Sunday
Directions    A46 to Evesham, turn R onto Evesham by-pass then R onto A44 signed Oxford. At first roundabout turn L signed Willersley leading to B4632 through Weston Sub Edge to Mickleton. At mini roundabout as you are leaving village turn right signed Ilmington. When you enter Ilmington, at ‘T’ junction, turn R into Front Street. Second pub on the right side.
Details    Leave the pretty village on steady climb to top of escarpment with good views, then follow track along the ridge to Hidcote, returning via Monarchs Way and Centenary Way to Ilmington. Can be muddy in places with 2 stiles.

On a damp, grey morning, sixteen of  us met outside the Red Lion in Ilmington.  The weather wasn't inviting  but at least we were spared the worst of the  super tempest, "Diana".
Our walk began along the village main street  then off up a long incline onto the Ilmington Downs.  We passed the  Nebsworth  radio aerials and walked on to the highest point in Warwickshire at 260m. However today, spectacular views of the Evesham valley were definitely "off". After the hill we walked  down to Hidcote before turning back towards Ilmington enjoying woodlands and pastures  along the way. 
Many thanks to Tony and Jennifer for leading a walk through rolling countryside which every one enjoyed ,  in spite of the weather. (Thanks to Jim for the report and to Terry and Bob W for the photos _ SF)

A bit damp (Terry)

The long plod to the top (Terry)

Handy barn (Bob W)

Woodland wanderings (Terry)

Walk  1271

Date  Thursday 29th November      4.7 miles    Easy         Pub lunch
Meet        Hanley Bowling Green Inn WR9 0AR  Grid 863621.  9.30 food, 10.00 start
Contact    Mike and Jenny     01684 772194     week before
Directions    J6 M5 - A4538 Pershore Lane - Right on to A38.   Left at Copcut (1 mile) Keep Left to  Ladywood. Turn Right,  Cross canal, keep Rt.    Pub ¾ mile on Right after you cross the river.
Details    Across fields to Salwarpe Church.  Along Droitwich Canal towpath, and back through fields and quiet lanes.  Might be muddy in places.

15 hardy souls braved the gales and rains of Storm Diana, and set off to explore the Droitwich Canal and its environs. Observation of the day came from Stuart as we pulled in to the car park of The Bowling Green Inn, he asked with a degree of surprise, "Is that a Bowling Green?"
By the time of the of the first stop the wind had removed 2 sets of headgear. One more and we would have had a 'hat-trick'. A brief halt in the small village of Salwarpe. It was once called Salop, but now shares its name with the River Salwarpe, whose origins give a nod to the salt industry that once dominated the area of Droitwich. The village has a rich history dating back to pre-Norman times. Throughout the medieval period the estate was passed between the church and the wealthy. The size of the parish church is an indication that this now tiny, insignificant community was once quite important. Back in the early 1600's, the house opposite the church served as a Grammar School.The Droitwich Canal too has a rich history. In the 1600's, the salt industry had grown and so did the need for improved transport links. The initial plan was to make the River Salwarpe navigable but by 1755 all efforts had failed. In 1767 Droitwich Council asked James Brindley to survey a route for a canal and by 1771 the 5.7 mile canal, linking Droitwich with the River Severn, was opened at a cost of £23,500. The local salt deposits caused there to be an abnormally high brine content in the water, and this resulted in a lack of fish in the canal, and flora and fauna more normally associated with coastal areas. By 1830 the canal was in decline. Attempts to revive its fortunes saw it connected to the Worcester-Birmingham canal, but increased competition from the railways failed to improve business. The canal saw its last boat in 1916 and it was formally closed in 1939.  (Re-opened in 2011 after restoration - SF)
Coffee was taken at lock number 5a and this saw a change in the weather. The rain abated and the sun made fleeting visits as it played hide and seek with the passing clouds. This made the return to the pub via tow path, fields and lanes, a little more pleasant. A fine lunch followed.
Thanks to Mike and Jenny for great organisation.  Thanks also to Ian for his usual comprehensive and informative report - SF

It's windy too!

Shorts !

Meeting the canal

Bridge repairs


Walk  1272

Date  Wednesday 5th December       6.7 miles Easy/Moderate      Pub lunch
Meet        Eagle and Sun  Hanbury Wharf  WR9 7DX.     9:30 to order food.
Contact    Bob & Andrea   01684 294676  the week before
Directions    Leave the M5 at J 6 turn left towards Hanbury and follow the signs to Hanbury Wharf.
Details    A varied  walk combining canal side,  hedge lined fields, historic buildings and parkland. Afterwards, NT members may choose  to go on to visit Hanbury Hall or anyone can go to The Jinney Ring Centre, both nearby.

We assembled at the Eagle and Sun carpark, overlooking the narrow boats moored in its picturesque setting.
Seventeen started at nine fifty five, along the towpath. The going was soft, plenty of chances to slip and to dive.
After a considerable distance, we turned away from the canal with its still water and weak reflections, swimming ducks and Pamela hearing the call of a missel thrush.  For a moment,  the sun tried to show itself.  We continued on through the fields climbing to Pipers wood, where the coffee stop was taken. From here, the route went on up to Hanbury Church, where Andrea told of the
connection of  the Church with the Archers (of radio fame) and also of an old farmhouse in the area. By this time the rain steadily fell, yet the walk continued down hill into the parkland through the avenue of old oak trees, onwards passing Hanbury Hall and meeting up with the walkers who chose the easier route.  Little did we know what confronted us:  a very muddy, sloping ploughed field.back to the canal. This walk was classified as "MUDerate".
Many thanks to Bob and Andrea for a very varied walk and a great lunch venue.  (Thanks also to Margaret for the report and to Bob W. and Terry for the photos.)   JD

Along the Towpath  (Bob W.)

Church on the Hill  (Bob W.)

A bit wet! (Bob W.)

Where are we?  (Terry)

Date  Thursday 6th December
Walking Group Christmas Lunch
Corse Lawn House Hotel
Noon for 12.30
Please do not arrive before 12.00

A splendid time was had by all!  The food and service were excellent, the company was, of course wonderful!  our new chairman Sylvia gave us a rousing speech, and her husband Ian entertained us with more of his funny Scottish poems.  Many thanks must go to Calvyn for all his hard work organising the event.


The congregation

Walk  1273

Date  Wednesday 12th December        5 miles Easy            Own arrangements
Meet    Gallagher Retail Park car park, Cheltenham GL51 9SL  Grid 930244  outside Majestic Wine           10.00 start
Contact    Barry   01242 522973    the week before   
Details    To  Swindon Village, Brockhampton, Elmstone Hardwick and back on easy paths and tracks.

Eleven of us met in the Gallagher Retail Park, outside Majestic Wines on a pleasant, if a little cold, partially sunny day.  The aim was to enjoy the countryside which hides behind modern industrial and commercial estates.

We had to wait until, after various excursions to coffee shops for pre-emptive "comfort", to set off through Swindon Village, passing under the main railway line on footpaths to Brockhampton. The route then took a very good and rural footpath back over the railway and alongside the Wigmore Farm reclamation site which was well-camouflaged as a grassy hill meadow. Even though we were far from Tewkesbury, we crossed and re-crossed Carrant Brook several times before we had coffee.

We returned via a mature system of green roads along the evocative Dog Bark Lane, aware of the industrial estate looming in the distance.  It was a pleasant surprise when the green road suddenly found the hissing steam pumps of Spirax Sarco.  We joined the stream of workers leaving for their lunch break until we gratefully rediscovered our cars. 

Thanks to Barry for organising this fascinating insight to a relatively unknown suburb of Cheltenham and for Stan for taking the photos.  (Hugh and John; photos by Stan; "Stub", the Deputy, Trainee Webmaster.)

Social Strolling

Coffee Conference

On the right track

Keep right on.....

Walk  1274

Date  Thursday 13th December      6.5 miles  Moderate    Own arrangements
Meet        The Valley (Evesham Country Park)  WR11 4DS      10.00 start
Contact    Richard & Eileen     01684 274197  the week before
Directions    A46 to Evesham and follow ring Rd.  Signs take you there.  Meet by the railway station in the top car park.  Toilets by the shops.
Details    We follow the Avon into town and then wander back by another route.
There is a café and  coffee shops at the Valley.  Lots of shops for Christmas shopping!

On a bright crisp morning 17 warmly clad walkers assembled on the hill by the miniature railway station.  Being on a small hill, the country park is aptly named “The Valley”.  We dropped down to the Avon, and followed it under the busy A46 into Evesham.  We passed a former water mill and some neatly constructed Victorian terraces and factories, and dropped down to the Abbey Park, where we were greeted by a peal of bells.  We passed through the old centre of town: it was a delight to walk under the arch and beside the little shops, thankful that we were walking and not stuck in the usual traffic queue.  We headed northwards along the main street passing several mansions, then turned off right towards the river, passing through farmland and under the A46 to meet our outward route, and climb back up to “The Valley”. 

Nobody fell in the river, nobody fell in the mud.  A very enjoyable walk, well thought out by Richard & Eileen.  We had a good lunch in the garden centre, which was over-warm for us after our invigorating walk.  (Thanks to Mike Barrett for the report and Bob & Graham for the photos"Stub", the Deputy, Trainee Webmaster.)

What a view!

A Season Symbol for the Photographer?

"Nobody fell in the Mud"!

"Nobody fell in the River"!

A Winning Smile?

Top of the World?

Thanks-Giving for home?

Walk  1275

Date  Wednesday 19th December     3.5 miles Easy        Pub lunch
Meet        Gloucester Old Spot   GL51 9SY         9.30 for 10.00
Contact    Barry    01242 522973    the week before
Directions    A38 south and turn left at Coombe Hill traffic lights.
Details    A gentle wander around the Boddington Estate with just 3 stiles

There are problems with the pub for Walk 1275 on Dec 19th so Barry has decided to postpone the walk until the new year when things are less busy.


Walk  1276

Date  Thursday  20th December    4.7 miles   Moderate/Energetic   Pub lunch 
Meet.     Duke of York, Berrow WR13 6JO.  Grid  782355     9.30am to order. Walk 10am from Hollybush
Contact         Mike & Jenny  01684 772194     the  week before
Directions    A438 from Tewkesbury. 
Details      Ragged Stone and Chase End hills with a Moderate option to bypass the tops.  Also the lake at Bromesberrow,  (which can be left out if the weather is bad)

A glorious day awaited 22 walkers on the penultimate walk of the year, sunshine until the last moments, ably led by Mike & Jenny.
Leaving Hollybush car park, where hollybushes were once in profusion, we walked  the lower slopes to the eastern side of Ragged Stone Hill en route to the hamlet of Whiteleaved Oak. Here the boundaries of 3 counties, Herefordshire, Worcestershire & Gloucestershire meet and local writers with an unusual sense of humour seek volunteers via their notice board to take their children away  for Christmas. Here a tree  with variegated leaves with their  white  appearance once grew. Druids are reputed to celebrate Summer & Winter Solstice here, hanging trinkets and messages on a nearby oak tree, sadly now very much in decline, and we realised that this might be happening tomorrow, 21st December. From the path running alongside Chase End Hill, the most southerly peak in the Malvern Hills (which 16 hardy souls climbed) we had lovely views of Eastnor Castle, built in 1812  nestling in extensive woodland. We all then descended to the foot of the hill alongside Bromsberrow Estate where a lovely coffee stop was enjoyed by the lakeside. During our return through the parkland of Bromsberrow along a broad drive we were surprised to see rhododendrons in bloom.At the bridge below White Leaved Oak we scrambled down a steep path which led again to Ragged Stone Hill and a choice for the mountaineers walking over the top or an easier route back to the car park.The Duke of York pub laid on an excellent lunch as we remembered what a great walk we had just enjoyed thanks to Mike & Jenny." (Many thanks to Betty for the report and to Graham for the photos - What a team! - SF)

The track to Whiteleaved Oak    (Graham)

Chase End Hill  

In the park  

Coffee break  

Walk  1277

Date  Friday 28th December     4.5 miles   Easy/Moderate       Pub lunch
Meet        The Fox & Hounds, Church St, Bredon, Worcs, GL 20 7LA.   9.30 order food
Contact    Betty & Graham       01684 594331 before Christmas please.
Directions    TL into Church St after passing Bredon Church on left. Pub is on right.
Details    This is the last U3A Walk in 2018 famously known as the ‘Pudding Buster’ to get rid of those unwanted pounds after the Festive Season. Our walk takes us around the Bredon foothills via Westmancote & Bredons Norton returning alongside the Avon & the Tithe Barn built more that 650 years ago, free for NT members (with a collecting box for 60p’s otherwise). Join us for post Christmas fun

A beautiful, bright morning greeted 28 of us gathered in the car park of the Fox and Hounds in Bredon for the Walking Group’s now traditional ‘Pudding Buster’, and we set off up Bredon Hill with sunshine above and mud underfoot, but not so much of it as to be a nuisance.  Single file paths didn’t stop the chatter, and we nearly had a dog join us en route, while its owner caught up with an old friend from the group in Westmancote – a very sociable walk today.

Being somewhat strung out, we regrouped around the Edwardian post box and headed on, past ‘Beggarboys’ Nature Reserve and along field margins, enjoying the view of the sun shining brightly on the Malvern Hills in the distance.

We stopped for coffee in the garden of Bredon’s Norton Village Hall, where they had kindly provided nearly enough seats for everyone, and yellow jackets were donned in readiness for a brief bit of road walking. We all safely negotiated a really dodgy stile, with Ian fielding the less sure footed among us, and walked fields and woods, admiring enormous fungi and still-colourful foliage as we went.

Past Bredon Dock, up the hill and across the pretty St Giles’ church yard, which yielded our first sighting of snowdrops, to admire the National Trust’s Tithe Barn, and then back to the Fox and Hounds to don festive headwear, eat good food and, for some, to win prizes in Mary’s raffle, which raised £70 for the Air Ambulance. Many thanks to Betty and Graham for a very enjoyable post-Christmas outing(Report by Shirley; "Stub", the Deputy, Trainee Webmaster)

What a disciplined Squad!

Luxury Coffee Stop

We were promised only 2 stiles!

Admiring the Anatomical View?

The Diet Busted!

Thanks to everyone's generosity, Mary tells me that the final total going to Ait Ambulance from the raffle is £80.  Well done folk, and thanks also to Mary for her usual genial organization and to Anne for acting as custodian of the hat collection! _SF

  Fun in funny hats 


Walk  1278

Date  Thursday 3rd January    6.5 miles Moderate         Pub lunch
Meet        Rising Sun, Cleeve Hill, Grid 981267 9.30 order food     0945  start
Contact    Bob & Kath   01242 232527   by Sunday before
Directions    On the B4632 between Cheltenham Prestbury and Winchcombe
Details    A steepish climb to the quarries then an undulating walk across the Common to Wontley Barn. Returning via West Barn, the Masts and below Cleeve Cloud to the Rising Sun

What a wonderful way to start the year.  24 hardy souls gathered in the car park of The Rising Sun to begin the first walk of 2019.  A very cold day had been forecast at 1C, but in fact it was 4C when we started, which with no rain, fog or wind made it perfect winter walking weather.

We were initially confronted with what appeared to be the north face of the Eiger, but it is the short way to the heights of Cleeve Hill and got rid of the climb in one foul swoop. No problem, as everyone made their own pace. After regrouping at the top it was plain sailing from then on.  We followed the undulations of Cleeve Common and dodging the ever intrepid golfers, made our way via the slight descent to Wontley Barn for a welcome coffee break.

A gradual incline took us back to the masts.  The fitness of everyone was impressive, especially just following on from Christmas festivities, which meant we were well ahead of schedule.  We took a short break whilst Kath alerted The Rising Sun to our impending early return, which was achieved by going via the hill fort and Cleeve Cloud affording us great views across the valley to The Malverns. We were delighted that one long table had been set up for us in the Malvern View Bar - just perfect for the 22 of us who stayed for lunch. Thanks to everyone who joined us for the walk. It was lovely to see so many of you.  Many thanks to Bob and Kath for leading today, and to Kath for the report and Bob for the photos - (did they sweep up afterwards too? - SF)

Across the grid      (photos by Bob P)

Near the top

Time out

Front runners

Walk  1279

Date Thursday 10th January   6.5 miles  Moderate             Pub lunch
   (Bob P)    (Bob P)
Meet        Cleeve Hill Golf Club   GL52 3PW      Grid  988270    9.30 for 10
Contact    Margaret & Terry  01684 772278   week before
Directions    At top of Cleeve Hill turn into Wickfield Lane to Golf Club. Please park at lower part of car park.
Details    This walk over Cleeve hill starts along the lower slopes in the direction of the aerials, later taking an anti clockwise route back.

21 - or was it 22? - gathered in the car park at Cleeve Cloud Golf Course to continue to shift those Xmas pounds.
Off we set at a goodly pace; in fact we zipped along (wink wink to Terry) along the lower Western Edge.
Terence seemed to be doing a jazz walk by improvising as he went, in that we missed out the hill fort that he intended to climb. This would have given me something to talk about ... I did notice a lot of earth worms though .
Then after a short break it was an ascent to the masts and a return along the edge, with a second break near the windblown tree.  I had watched that tree grow ‘mm by mm’ my from my window at work over the years.
All into the Golf Club for some hearty lunches - well I was happy as I was one of the first served.
We’d chosen our time for the walk well – as, by the time we were leaving, the atmospheric cloud had descended.
So an enjoyable walk, with good views, good company as always and robust food. Thanks Terry and Margaret for leading, (and thanks also for the photos to Terry and to Calvyn for the report; webmaster “Stub”).

Optimism beneath the Cloud

Overwhelmed by the Cloud?

Contemplation in the Cloud?

A Stimulating Lecture in the Cloud?

Walk  1280

Date  Wednesday 16th January    5.5 miles  Easy/Moderate       Pub lunch
Meet        The Swan Inn, Coombe Hill, GL19 4BA, Grid 889271     9.30 for  10.00
Contact    Hugh on 01452 780460 or  Fran on 01684 491698 the week before
Directions    Coombe Hill traffic lights on A38
Details    A mainly flat walk with three gentle up slopes, footpaths, a  long bridle path which could be muddy, some short road sections and  six stiles. The walk takes in Knightsbridge, Tredington Park and Deerhurst Walton.

20 cheerful walkers met at The Swan Inn at Coombe Hill on a “dreich” (damp and dreary) morning.  Hugh lead us on this mainly flat walk towards Knightsbridge, Tredington Park and Deerhurst Walton and back to The Swan.  The walk took us along mainly bridle paths which were fairly muddy underfoot.  We met 3 horses and riders and quickly noticed that the horses were very skittish. They seemed to be spooked by the “human apparitions” who appeared on their normally peaceful path!  The walkers stood back quietly to let them pass much to the relief of the young riders. The walk opened out across fields and farms and a patch of pretty snowdrops and Aconites were spotted in a farm yard.
The sun tried to penetrate the clouds but gave up and at midday the heavens opened!  By this time one of the walkers ran out of steam but luckily it was on a road and Hugh was able to phone his wife Christine, who kindly came to the rescue.  Barry, “the Knight in shining armour,” stayed behind to keep her company till transport arrived to take them to the pub to wait for the rest of the walkers. There were 6 tricky stiles and gentle slopes to finish off the walk.
Many thanks to Hugh for yet another enjoyable walk despite the weather.  (Thanks for the report Sylvia - anyone got any photos for this walk? - SF)

Walk  1281

Date  Thursday 17th January    6 miles  Moderate   Pub lunch
Meet        The Fleet, Twyning GL20 6FL   Grid 905366     9.45 for 10.00
Contact    Sonia   01684 298409 the week before. Food orders by 11th.
Directions    Off A.38 from Tewkesbury
Details    A walk to Strensham with one or two ascents. Some lanes,fields and tracks. 4 stiles.    n.b. Availability of loos at start t b a.
          Please choose  food from www.thefleetattwyning.co.uk and give
                          your choice  to Sonia by 11th Jan when booking on the walk.

What a perfect day for our walk - cool, sunny and mostly dry underfoot.   22 of us set off from the Fleet Inn Twyning walking through lanes, past pleasant looking new houses, and across fields to the Drinkwater stables.  Here we were greeted by some extremely frisky horses and a even large buzzard!  Besides an attractive lake, Sonia informed us that Samuel Drinkwater, who was now a trainer, had previously been a jockey and had ridden the horse " Tour des Champs" when it won a race at Cheltenham back in 2017 .
We stopped at Strensham War Memorial situated near some attractive and interesting houses that displayed  Coats of Arms.   Here we were told that Strensham was part of a Royal hunting forest In the 17 th Century  and that Samuel Butler, the poet and satirist, was baptised at Strensham. He was educated at Kings Worcester, and finally buried in St Paul's Cathedral with a monument in Westminster Abbey.  Butler, a farmers son, was noted for his attacks on puritanism. 
Strensham Court, belonged to the High Sheriff of Worcestershire in the 19th Century but it is sadly no more, being destroyed by fire in 1974 and demolished a year later.
Enjoying  beautiful views of the blue Malverns,  we crossed fields and lanes and returned to the Fleet for a much needed lunch.  Thank you Sonia for a splendid and interesting walk.  (Thanks also to Anne for her report, and to Stuart for the photos - SF)

Look at that!   (photos by Stuart)

The Malverns - All in a row

Last year's stubble

Walk  1282

Date  Thursday 24th January      4.5 miles  Moderate/Energetic        Pub lunch*
Meet        Royal William Hotel  GL 6 6TT   Grid 879128   9.30 to order food
Contact    Anne  & Margaret    01684 294859 the week before
Directions     A46 Cheltenham to Painswick road.  Pub is on R after Cranham turning.
Details    Mostly woodland paths. Some fields. Very little flat walking. Muddy. Some stiles.
 * Food needs to be ordered in advance.  Please choose your lunch and let Anne know by Monday 21st.  http://www.royalwilliam.co.uk/ for menus.


Walk  1283

Date  Thursday 31st January       5.5 miles      Mod/energetic        pub lunch     
Meet             Fostons Ash   GL6 7ES      Grid 915115           9.30  for 10.00 start
Contact       Jim and Margaret  01684 296773  the week before
Directions   M5 to Jct. 11A  then A417 passing the "Air Balloon" . In  1 mile take right turn                .               B4070 towards Stroud and Birdlip . At Birdlip keep to B4070.  Fostons Ash is                   pub on LHS in about  2 miles.
.Details       The walk is on open country past Overtown with good views over Cranham                    woods, then  mostly in woodland to Sheepscombe and back to Fostons Ash.               Good views of Painswick vallley .


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 21st  January  2019

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