|| MERROW RESIDENTS' ASSOCIATION
your community voice
WALK YOUR WAY TO BETTER HEALTH
Living in Guildford, we are blessed with splendid countryside on our doorstep; from hills with views, to woodland and open grass and heathland, nature reserves for bird-watching, river and ponds full of life. There is a beauty spot to please everyone, yet not enough people get out and walk to explore our local green spaces.
People may be worried about exploring the countryside on their own. Walking in a group is a safe way to discover new places and a great way to make new friends. Walking for Health (WfH) was started across the UK in 1995 (originally as Walking the Way to Health Initiative – WHI) to encourage people to get out, explore nature and meet other walkers.
Walking can play a big role in creating a healthier nation. Described by health experts as 'almost perfect exercise', walking requires no equipment or expense and is the ideal way for most people to become more active.Stepping out can improve cardiovascular fitness, increase muscle tone, and as it is a weight-bearing exercise, it can also help improve bone density to help stave off osteoporosis. Organised walks (brisk or not) can have a health impact on individuals by providing an opportunity to socialise (good social networks enhance health) and a distraction from everyday stresses (stress contributes to poor health).
Natural England’s Walking for Health (WfH) Scheme supports led health walks nationwide. The schemes enable over 38,000 people every week to enjoy local natural spaces and benefit their health by taking part in the 2,500 health walks led by trained walk leaders, the largest national body promoting and setting the standards for led health walks.
Annelize Kidd of the Boxgrove & Burpham Health Walk Schemes says: “We are very pleased to be offering weekly health walks from Boxgrove Park and Bowers Lock in Burpham. I am keen to promote the benefits that walking and the outdoors can have on both physical and mental health. Walking is a fun, social activity which reduces stress and has a whole host of health benefits.
Weekly free hour-long guided walks give you the opportunity to take regular exercise, enjoy your local environment and meet new people. Held all year-round, in all weathers except very icy, just turn up in comfortable shoes.
Boxgrove Walk Group meets in front of Boxgrove Primary School on Monday mornings at 8.45 am. Walks take about an hour, using circular routes to the River Wey, Pewley Down or Guildford Golf Course.
Burpham Walk Group meets at the Bowers Lock car-park on Wednesday lunch-times at 12.45 am. Walks take in Riverside Park, or along the River Wey towards Send. The terrain is relatively flat and suitable for new walkers and people with push-chairs.
Longer 2-3 hour walks around Surrey followed by an optional pub lunch, are held in the summer on Tuesdays offered once a month (See the programme below)
Tuesday 3 May Bluebell walk to Pewley Down, Chantries, St Martha’s: 5½ miles/ 8.8 km, 2 ½ hrs+. Meet at 9.45 am, public car park to the right of the Guildford Golf Club (post-code GU1 2HL). Points of interest: Large expanse of bluebells; beautiful views; four hills.
Optional lunch afterwards at the Guildford Golf Club (must be reserved asap).
Tuesday 24 May Chobham Common: 5 miles, 2 ½ hours.
Meet at 10.00 am at the Staple Hill car park, between Chobham and Longcross.
Points of interest: S.E. England’s largest National Nature Reserve; more than 100 species of bird; heathland, with orchids and sundews.
Optional pub lunch at the Four Horseshoes on the green at Burrowhill, GU24 8QP.
Tuesday 7 June Reigate Heath, Colley Hill, Juniper Hill: 5 ½ miles/ 8.8 km, 2 ½ hrs+.
Meet at 9.45 am at the Black Horse Pub (post-code RH2 9JZ) close to Reigate Heath.
Points of interest: Good views; Buckland Conservation Village; heathland; 200 yr-old windmill used as church.
Optional pub lunch afterwards at the Black Horse.
Tuesday 21 June Box Hill: 4 miles/ 6.4 km, 2 ¼ hours.
Meet at 9.45 am on top of Box Hill in front of the NT shop (post-code KT20 7LB).
Park in the NT car park across the road.
Points of interest: Beautiful views. Ancient yew trees.
Optional lunch in conservatory at Denbies Wine Estate.
Tuesday 5 July Pyrford lock to Ockham Mills; Walsham and Newark locks; Newark Priory:
5 miles, 2½ hrs.
Meet at 10 am at car park opposite the Anchor pub (post-code GU23 6QW) by Pyrford lock.
Points of interest: Riverside towpath; beautiful old Ockham and mill-house buildings.
Optional lunch afterwards at the Anchor pub.
Tuesday 19 July Tilford, Frensham little Pond: 5 miles, 2½ hrs. Meet at 10.00 am in the car-park opposite the Barley Mow pub in Tilford (post-code GU10 2BU).
Points of interest: Around Frensham Little Pond; the River Wey Valley; Tilford Oak (800+ yrs old); Visit the ruins of Waverley Abbey (built 1128).
Optional pub lunch afterwards at the The Mill in Elstead, GU8 6LE (t.01252 703333)
Tuesday 2 August Newlands Corner: 5½ miles/ 8.8 km, 2 ½ hrs+.
Meet at 10 am at the Visitor Centre at Newlands Corner.
Points of interest: Good views; Silent Pool; Pretty Shere; part of the North Downs Way.
Optional lunch afterwards at the Barn Cafe opposite Newlands Corner (must be reserved).
Tuesday 6 September Friday Street, Wotton Common, Leith Hill and Coldharbour:
6 ½ miles/ 10.4 km, 3 hrs.
Meet at 9.40 am at the Stephan Langton pub in Friday Street. (post-code RH5 6JR)
Points of interest: Highest point in Surrey. Panoramic views across the Weald from Leith Hill Tower. Ancient woodland with deer and pheasants; waterfall along the Tilling Bourne.
Optional pub lunch afterwards at the Stephan Langton.
Tuesday 20 September Great Bookham & Effingham Commons: 5 ½ miles/ 8.8 km, 2 ½ hrs. Meet at 9.45 am at the NT Mark Oak Gate car park, on the road from Fetcham to Stoke D’Abernon/Cobham.
Points of interest: Ancient common-land, with small streams through oak woodland; ponds; marshy areas; roe deer; good variety of fungi.
Optional pub lunch afterwards at The Bell, Bell Lane/The Ridgeway, Fetcham, KT22 9ND.
Tuesday 11 October Ockham Common to Chatham Semaphore Tower 5 ½ miles/ 8.8 km, 2 ½ hrs+. Meet at 9.45 am at the Ockham Common car park snack hut.
Undulating heath; Scots Pine forest and acidic bogs; lots of fungi.
Optional lunch at the Black Swan gastro-pub, Old Lane, Ockham, KT11 1NG.
Call Annelize Kidd on 574748 to book a place on the Tuesday walks (Maximum group size will be 25).
View a short film about health walks at http://www.youtube.com/walkingforhealth
The Boxgrove WfH Group visit to the Chantries to view the bluebells.
Can you lead the way? Would you be willing to take a small group of
walkers on a regular week day morning in the Merrow area?Open
to all members of the community. These hour long walks are designed
to promote health and social interaction. Volunteers will receive
appropriate training in leading walks and first aid. The commitment
can be as little or as much as you can give.
If so call Jo on 01483 534706 or email email@example.com
Concern Surrey and the Healthy Living Project.