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For some time now I have felt that the Club should make a statement regarding its purpose within the community so after discussions within the committee we have come up with the following. I hope you like it.

“To be the preferred local provider of healthy walking activities available to all members of the public. Providing regular, interesting walks in a friendly atmosphere to suit all ages and abilities at an affordable cost”

Our mission statement now appears on the front page.

The Walking Partnership

The national group of The Ramblers has put a strong case to the Government for transferring responsibility for managing the entire network of National Trails in England to a trust.

They are now awaiting the Consultation Report which should be published soon.

At present, the cost of maintaining the trails is met from Natural England (a Government agency - 75%) and from local highway authorities (25%).

The Government, however, wants to pass this responsibility onto local authorities and volunteers.

A summary of The Ramblers case for a trust is set out below:

A National Trails Trust would ensure consistently high quality standards for the trails, raising the bar for walking experiences. The creation of a charitable trust would also lessen the burden on over-stretched local authorities. As a charity, it would be able to raise funds and even further raise the profile of these national treasures.

The National Trails Trust would inspire local involvement in the management and development of the trails through the introduction of Local Trail Trusts, and it would help to develop the network, ensuring the smooth integration of the England Coastal Path and extending the Trails reach.

A National Trails Trust would do all of this and more, helping our National Trails reach their full potential.

To help The Ramblers cause with this important initiative, your Committee has agreed to make a donation of £100 from Club funds.The Basingstoke Ramblers Club has recently joined The Walking Partnership. This new partnership, supported by Ramblers Worldwide Holidays, provides direct financial contributions to local walking groups to help with organising group walks, encouraging people to get out walking, helping to clear and improve footpaths, providing equipment to help walkers etc. Over the past 65 years, Ramblers Worldwide Holidays has given many millions of pounds to assist walking charities and conservation projects in Britain and the countries they visit on their worldwide holidays. Now our group can benefit directly.

Ramblers Worldwide Holidays operate group-walking holidays in the UK and all around the world. Each holiday is accompanied by a qualified walks leader, so you can leave all the organising to them and just enjoy meeting like-minded people and of course, some fantastic walking. Holidays are graded in terms of difficulty, and there is a full range from sightseeing right up to hut-to-hut mountain treks. Take a look at their website on www.ramblersholidays.co.uk or give them a call on 01707 331133 for more details or to order a brochure.

Remember when you book to quote the name of our group, and we will then receive a contribution of £10 per person on UK holidays, £20 per person on short haul holidays, and £30 per person on long haul holidays. This extra funding could really make a difference to us!

For more details, visit The Walking Partnership website at www.thewalkingpartnership.org.uk.

Some useful Permissive Paths

Log onto defra.gov.uk and search for conservation walks. Select the county and you will be able to choose walks from the map shown. There is one very useful path below Alresford that eliminates some road walking on the Wayfarers. That can't be bad. Sandra While deliberations took place on a rather snowy Friday afternoon prior to the planned AGM, and as we slithered around, attempted to catch a bus, or to make a car journey which probably took about five hundred times longer than normal, it was suggested visiting the 'met office' website to view half-hourly satellite/radar images of rainfall, or in this afternoon's case, snow.

A slightly more comprehensive website www.meteox.com should, once keyed in, give a quarter-hourly moving imagery for the last 3 hours, and if you go a little lower down the left-hand side of the page, click 'Expected 3 hrs' to see what is to come; useful if a band of rain is crossing the country. Please note that times quoted are 'Central European Time' - CET. You can even archive satellite imagery for the last three years: click onto 'more' at top left hand corner of page at end of list of times (last 3 hours), or go further down page and click on 'Archive' then select date and time, and then click 'retrieve image'. If you want, you can see quarter-hourly images of the snowfall of Feb 6, although it doesn't distinguish rain from snow, as it was more sleety rain to the south-east of us; and you can even see why your head got wet on that evening ramble of June, the whatever, back in say 2007. Geoff - Weather Watcher

Website: Where’s the path

This is a fascinating site for members who are interested in maps and how paths and places looked years ago. It allows you to look at an historical map directly alongside a modern OS map, also to view a satellite image alongside the map, as well as study local features and places of interest - hours of fun for "virtual rambling" on winter's nights!

The website is http://wtp2.appspot.com/wheresthepath.htm

Instructions on how to use: Top of LH pane enter a place name then, to its right, select the specific location you want from the drop down.Top of RH pane, in the "select the map type" drop down, select "OS+1930s OS". Now you have a modern map left and the corresponding 1930s map right. Your mouse cursor is coordinated in both panes so, if you hover over a bygone line feature in the RH pane, its today location is confirmed in the LH pane. You can drag either map and the other remains coordinated.

Useful links to other sites

Ramblers Association

Hampshire CC

Multi Map

Ordinance Survey

Campaign to Protect Rural England

H F Holidays

Walking Partnership

Walking World

Happy Hiker

Walking England

Plan a Route

Walks accomodation and more

Walk Uk and Europe

Ramblers Word Wide Holidays

Planning routs with maps you can print

Details of Path Closures

Need an idea for a walk try this site

Our Club Mission

Volunteers needed

We are now looking for volunteer(s) to organise next year’s summer break for the club. As usual this should be a week of walks from a hotel/B&B which could accommodate up to approx. 40 people. If you have an idea for a holiday destination for this annual event, please send an email to basramnews@gmail.com or contact/speak to a committee member for consideration by the committee.

Advice to walk leaders

Could we please ask walk leaders, especially those who are thinking of ‘taking up the challenge’ of walk leading to please re-acquaint/acquaint  themselves with the ‘Advice for Walk Leaders’ in the member’s area on the club website - http://www.basingstokeramblers.org.uk/advwalkleaders.pdf. We would also like to draw your attention to the section on our Insurance Cover,  which is 3rd party only. As stated, if you would like a copy of the Schedule then please contact our Treasurer.

Could I also draw your attention to the first paragraph in the section ‘Planning your walk’ which says “You may wish to re-walk the route shortly before the actual day of the walk to refresh your memory and to check for any changes.” There is always the potential for your walk route to be not how you last walked it, e.g. flooding after rain, FP diversion,  summer drop which may block a path. We can always send out an email  if you need to advise potential walkers of any problems/changes/whatever concerning your planned walk – most times, even up to the day before the walk. Likewise, if you are planning to participate in a walk always check your e-mails the days before to see if anything about the walk has been sent. And for those who do not use a computer, it may be an idea to phone someone you know to check for you.

The last sentence of the advice sums up the information for both walk leaders and walkers –

“The reader may well say 'it's all common sense'. And the reader would be right.”

AGM 2018

Next year’s AGM will be held at the Carnival Hall in Basingstoke on Friday 2nd Feb 2018. Further details will follow.

First Aid Courses

The club has found a First Aid course the cost is £30 but the club will half of this. If you are interested in taking this course then please, in the first instance, contact committee member Tony.

Saturday Walks Leaders

At present we have no walk leaders for any Saturday walks in February and March. If you have never lead a walk for the club before then please consider it. It's interesting as you often find paths and routes you may not have known before & it can be very satisfying as well as you are giving something to the club -

all our walk leaders are volunteers.

At present we are relying on the same people coming forward to lead a walk for the club, so, when they can't do it, we struggle to fill the club's calendar, as we are constantly relying on the same people.

If you would like to try your hand at leading a walk, then please contact us with your idea and for any advice you need. There is information for walk leaders in the member's section of our website & a pre-formatted walks entry screen to send details of a walk over the internet.

   Regards John & Jenny