Newsletter > Newsletter archive > June 2014

June 2014

Walk a country mile
Walk a CountryMileWe’re very pleased to have got together with the Prince’s Countryside Fund this summer to help with their ‘Walk a Country Mile’ campaign. National Countryside Week is the Fund’s annual awareness campaign to celebrate the British countryside and the people who live and work in our rural areas.

Between Monday 14th and Sunday 20th July the Fund is encouraging everyone to get together with friends, colleagues or family and take a walk in the countryside. They would also, naturally enough, like to raise a bit of money for their valuable work. The Prince’s Countryside Fund is a grant-giving body which supports projects to make the countryside more sustainable, helps young people get started on rural careers and contributes to emergency relief charities during crises.

For our part we are offering a free walk to everyone who joins Walkingworld during this period, so they can pick a route that’s near to them and of the right length and difficulty. You can also take advantage of this offer if you joined sometime in the past and have never got round to subscribing. Just find the walk you want and click the button to add it to your account. There’s no requirement to walk just a mile and there’s no minimum commitment to make for fundraising. You can keep up with all the activities being planned for the week on the Prince’s Countryside Fund website.

Walking in the Faroe Islands
There are few places within a couple of hours flying time of London that can genuinely claim to be off the beaten track but the Faroe Islands is surely a worthy candidate. The remote archipelago, perched in the Atlantic between Norway, the Shetland Islands and Iceland, has been inhabited for 1600 years or more. For much of this period the islands sustained a population of just a few thousand, living an almost completely subsistence lifestyle. Only in the last hundred and fifty years has trade developed and the population expanded to the present 50,000 or so. It’s a fascinating place because that ancient, almost timeless, culture is only just beneath the surface.

There is also some excellent walking, across a landscape that is similar to some parts of Scotland and yet, somehow, entirely unique. Walkingworld’s David Stewart spent a few days on the islands experiencing the hospitality of the Faroese and exploring its countryside. With a modern network of roads, tunnels and bridges linking many of the islands – and ferries and helicopters filling in the gaps – it’s possible to base yourself on one of the central islands and visit most of the others within a day.

Inntravel’s holiday to the Faroe Islands does just this. David checked out the family hotels used by Inntravel’s guests and found a real Faroese welcome along with delicious meals made with local ingredients. He also walked several of the routes in the Inntravel itinerary, including an old track from the island’s capital to a farmhouse that is possibly Europe’s oldest inhabited wooden building. You can read David’s report on walking in the Faroe Islands, find out more about this holiday with a difference on the Inntravel website, or call their expert team on 01653 617034.

The Faroe Islands
- Self-guided two centre walking holiday
- Prices from £860pp, inc 7 nights’ B&B, 5 dinners, car hire, detailed route guides & maps
- Flights extra (direct from Stansted or via Copenhagen)
- Available from 5 June to 30 September 2014

Holidays in Spain
The Alpujarra walking holiday we mentioned last month with ‘Driving over Lemons’ author Chris Stewart this September has proved so popular that Casa Ana are running another week's holiday with Chris from the 11th to 18th October.  Please contact Anne at Casa Ana for information and bookings: www.casa-ana.com, email: info@casa-ana.com

If you fancy a ‘Do it yourself’ holiday in one of the less well visited parts of Spain, Jim Arymar has prepared a decent portfolio of walks in the Sierra de Espuña, a ‘mini park’ in the region of Murcia. You can look up the walks and read his notes on the area which also give a recommendation for a pleasant well-priced hotel in the town of Alhama de Murcia, some 30 minutes or so drive from the walks. There are, of course, plenty of lost cost flights to Murcia.

Walkingworld contributor Peter Gordon has a very nice town house in a village near to the Sierra Nevada and Alpujarras, with excellent walking in the slightly cooler months of the year from September to June. Outside July and August their rates are already cheaper, but they are offering a further 10% discount for Walkingworld members along with 6 free walk routes. Quote Quote WW146 when making your booking. www.morisca.co.uk

Mountain Rescue Team events
Aberdeen MRTAberdeen Mountain Rescue Team celebrates its 50th anniversary this year and to mark the occasion a number of events are being planned across Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire to give the public in Grampian an insight into the Team’s work in 2014 and to help raise vital funds for the charity. On Saturday 12th July the Team will be in Union Square, Aberdeen from 10am to 5pm to give the public an opportunity to meet the Team, ask any questions and see the sort of equipment and communications they use – they will also have a number of pieces of equipment from the 1960s.  On 11th September, Mark Beaumont, record-breaking long-distance Scottish cyclist, adventurer, broadcaster, documentary maker and author will give a talk, fresh from the Commonwealth Games Queen’s Baton relay.  On 1st  November there will be a fundraising ceilidh at the Hilton Treetops, Aberdeen, with dancing to Ceol Mhor. www.amrt.org.uk

Meanwhile on our own patch plans are well advanced for Kirkby Stephen’s Beer and Bangers Festival, which is run in support of local charities including the Mountain Rescue team. The dates are Friday 5th and Saturday 6th September, so your weekend could also include a bit of walking (see the Walkeden website for information). There’s a superb line up of bands, including Cumbrian folk legends Long Meg (our very own Walkingworld contributor, Paul Shorrock, is a member) presiding over a ceilidh at lunchtime on Saturday and a series other great artists in the evenings. There’s free camping on site if you are happy with basic facilities, two posher campsites in the town and plenty of other accommodation, so do come and join us if you can. You can keep up to date on the Beer and Bangers Festival Facebook page. Tickets will be on sale soon, set to be quite a lot less than £20 per person for the whole weekend.

Member news
Sixty-seven year old Dartmoor inhabitant Roger Mechan has been walking various trails in France and Spain to raise money for charity, so far accumulating £7000. His latest exploit has taken him along the Camino from Porto in Portugal to Santiago de Compostela in Spain. You can read about his walk and see his short video at www.dartmoorman.blogspot.co.uk