Leading or just walking

Information you need to know

Walking with the Weston-super-Mare Walking group (WWG)

Members and prospective members should read this walking guide and agree to abide by it.

It is particularly important to note: ALL WALKERS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR OWN SAFETY ON WALKS.        

 Q1. What kind of walk is suitable for me? 

 All our walks are shown on our online programme. Our programme shows the approximate length of each walk in miles and gives a severity grade : easy, moderate or hard. Only you can decide what you think you can do. If you have done little walking before, it is suggested that you choose the shorter walks graded ‘easy’.   Some of the walks are on hills, and may have steep climbs. Some may be hazardous due to the terrain or weather conditions. The same walk on a clear sunny day will be different in winter conditions or on a cold, misty or wet day. So you should be confident of your ability to undertake this kind of walk on the actual day. If you are unsure speak to the leader.   

 Q2. What should I wear and what should I bring? 

 Clothing will obviously depend on the time of year and the nature of the walk. The following items are recommended: 

  •  Strong boots with walking socks.      (Trainers are not suitable except on short walks in god dry weather.) 
  •  Waterproof jacket. 
  •  Warm trousers, preferably waterproof and or with gaiters in bad weather and when mud is prevalent. 
  •  Hat & gloves in winter. A rucksack to carry food and other items. 
  •  A packed lunch, drinks and snacks. 
  •  It is most important that you have a good supply of water particularly in summer to prevent dehydration. (Most walks include a coffee stop and lunch breaks. WWG rarely stops at a pub or café on route so you must bring all sustenance needed.) On coach trips all walkers are required to bring spare footwear to change from and into as it is not acceptable to come onto the coach with dirty boots. Spare dry clothing may be advisable after walking in very wet conditions. 
  • Walking poles. (If you use them) 
  • Additional items to consider may include: Small first aid kit  Map & compass;  Whistle;   Mobile phone (note many walks are in areas where there is no signal. GPS         

 Q3. How do I get to the start of the walk? 

You will have to make your own arrangements. Some members do car share but there is no obligation on members to provide lifts however close you may live to them. If you are given a lift, you are expected to offer to drive next time or to make a contribution towards the petrol. – Please note a contribution towards the petrol is not considered to be a payment for the lift.     

 Q4. What happens at the start of the walk?

You are expected to arrive at least 10 minutes before the designated start time to allow you to kit up. Walks start promptly and will depart on time. Each walk has an appointed leader and if you are a new member, you should introduce yourself to the leader at the start. The leader will briefly explain the walk. The leader will normally appoint a back marker unless the group is a small group likely to remain cohesive.   

 Q5. What else may the walks leader do at the start of the walk? 

 The leader may check to see if everyone is suitably attired and seems capable of doing the walk in question. If the leader thinks that someone is ill prepared or does not seem capable of completing the walk, he or she has the absolute discretion in refusing to allow that person to take part. This is more likely on hard walks.   

 Q6. Can the leader change the planned walk? 

 Yes – the leader has the absolute discretion on this. For example if, either on the reccé or during the walk, he or she may encounter a hazard requiring a change of direction. This may also be necessary if bad weather conditions are encountered.  

 Q7. Can I leave the walk for any reason? 

 You can but it is not recommended. If you do so, you must tell the leader and it is preferred you have someone with you. If you choose to leave or take a different route, you are no longer taking part in the group activity.   

 Q8. What should I do or not do in the countryside? 

All walkers must follow the country code. You can download full details on the internet but here are some relevant points: Leave gates as you find them – if they are closed, close them after you, if they are open, leave them open; Do not damage wall, gates or fences; Do not leave litter or unwanted food; Keep to the paths where possible; Walk in a single file through growing crops; Keep out of the way when farm animals are being gathered or moved. When walking on roads keep to the footpath. If there is no footpath generally keep to the right hand side and walk in single file.  

 Q9. Do I have to join the WWG to go on walks? 

 If you have not been on our walks before, we are pleased for you to come on one or two walks to see if they are suitable for you. If you then decide to continue walking with us, we expect you to join.   

 Q10. How much does it cost? 

The current subscription is £7 and runs from January to December. If you join late in the year ie from late October your subscription will cover you for the following year.  

 Q11. How do I receive a programme? 

 This will be emailed to you. Alternatively you may hand 6 stamped addressed envelopes to the secretary to receive a hard copy.