The countdown has started!
Well, the back end of August has arrived already. It doesn’t seem long since summer holidays seemed a long way in the future and school holidays were a lifetime away. Suddenly, we are approaching “back-to-school” time and, just as much a landmark date, the start of this year’s Guildford Walkfest.
For some, the beginning of term will signal changes to daily schedules – grandparent duties change and children aren’t at home during Monday to Friday daytime. But for many, September also marks an opportunity to get out into the fresh air and enjoy a walk with like-minded folk and maybe a chat along the way.
We’ve said it before, but Walkfest is about much more than the physical activity of walking. It is a chance to socialize, meet new people and unwind. Walkfest also exists to help those who are not habitual walkers to take those first steps in a safe and friendly environment.
Amongst our walks this year are several from the Guildford Health Walks team (formerly known as Walking for Health). Their walks give many attendees an important social outlet and are a very welcoming organization. Why not give them a go and visit new places at the same time.
This year, we also have walks hosted by Challengers and Catalyst. Both these organisations are good if you are not a confident walker or have physical or mental health issues. It is great to welcome both of these teams on board as we try to broaden the walks on offer and to make Walkfest more inclusive.
I mentioned grandparent duties earlier but there are also the young mums who have toddlers or babies to care for during the day. Last year we included a Toddler & Buggy walk along the Wey towpath at Send and this was such a success that we are repeating it this year. And we have a brand new addition for those who are even younger! Based at Queen Elizabeth Baptist Church we have a group who are organizing a Baby Buggy walk especially designed for those who are younger than toddlers.
So take your pick! We have walks for most ages, abilities and covering much of the borough. We hope to see you at some point during Walkfest – and if you know of other special interest groups or walk groups in Guildford Borough whom we can add to next years programme, please do let us know.