News from the Ridgeway - Autumn/Winter 2008
Autumn is a great time of year to be on The Ridgeway in the Chilterns, renowned for its beech woodlands. The colours this year have been fantastic and there's nothing better than tramping through woodland, kicking up leaves and enjoying that wonderful smell of slowly decaying vegetation. Combine that with lunch in a character pub in front of a log fire, and life doesn't get much better! To help you plan such a visit there are a good number of circular walks around this half of The Ridgeway - have a look at our 'Walks around the Ridgeway' pages under Planning a trip on our website.
Photo: Wendover Woods - Tina Stallard, Natural England
In the last year we have been working with colleagues from several highway authorities to establish new circular walks as we know they are how many people choose to enjoy our Trails. Two new ones on the downs west of the River Thames were launched last summer, including one around the Uffington White Horse, and another two along the western half of The Ridgeway are imminent. We are also planning another from the village of Nuffield that will take people through a lovely section of the Chilterns.
Photo: View west from Uffington Castle - J. Joslin, Natural England
Another focus to our work has been providing information on the Trail, again something that people tell us they want. We have used old structures at key access points that used to hold information about our code of respect to now show a map on one side with information about the landscape on the other. We hope you'll like them!
Photo: Display board on The Ridgeway - J. Joslin, Natural England
Of course, much of the work done on The Ridgeway goes pretty much unnoticed. Miles of vegetation is mown each year and side vegetation cut back to keep paths clear, signs are replaced and improved, gates are maintained, and litter and fly tipping removed. Most of this work is done by our small team working with a large number of volunteers who give their time, energy and expertise so generously - we thank and applaud them.
Photo: Chiltern Woodland - Chilterns Conservation Board
Jos Joslin, National Trail Officer for The Ridgeway