It was back in October 2012 that I first joined Brunel Walking Group in an opportunity to meet like-minded people of a similar age and to explore different areas on foot. Since then, I’ve become a regular and well-known member. It was only six-months after joining that I was leading my first group walk (I was encouraged to do it but, still).
On average, I’ll probably lead five or six walks in a year and often more. What I’d like to do in this post is to explore and share why I take on this responsibility.
Already, the first month of 2019 lies behind us. With the arrival of February, much of the UK hasn’t been blanketed with snow, if it wasn’t covered already. Mercury has plummeted and hopefully, it won’t be long before it begins to rise again.
Our long-weekend away in wet and windy Devon was drawing to an end. My car was packed and ready for the inevitable drive home, while others might’ve been finishing up at the youth hostel, settling for a shorter walk or perhaps an early return journey to Bristol.
Only a few of us headed south once more and for the longest walk of the day, which began in the village of Chagford.
This was the most recent walk I’ve led for Brunel Walking Group. It may even be the last one I lead for 2018. I reckon I’ve now done six or seven this year.
For me personally, this was a return to the coastal side of northern Exmoor that I’d not seen for a couple of years. I didn’t fancy driving down and having to fare the expense of fuel alone. So, I decided to take the group and without having recently pre-walked the route!
Until very recently, I was the nominated Footpaths Representative for Brunel Walking Group in Bristol. My duties were few, while I was mostly responsible for recording and reporting incidents we encountered along the local public right of way network, to the relevant authority.
It’s fair to say that very few group members (from an active membership of four hundred-plus) got in touch to inform me of obstructions or interference they may’ve encountered on their own walks (obviously, I can be on every group walk all of the time). But one of the more recent reports led me to undertake my own investigation across the Mendip Hills and in to East Somerset.