The organisation was perfect thanks to Tony, John N, Barbara Wellbelove, and Liz F. A second group followed a week later. Lovely as our walks in Surrey, Kent and Sussex are, I welcomed the change to walking along the clifftops, albeit with periodic drops down to sea level and then the climb back up. Since then we’ve enjoyed a Cream Tea thanks to hosts John and Di, to Pamela and Anne J, and to all who brought scones and cakes. Yet again a perfect afternoon in their beautiful garden.
For our UK holidays we’ve generally managed to meet the demand from members. Numbers are more of a problem on our overseas holidays, where a manageable group size is around 20. Ideally, if we had the demand, and a member willing to organise, we would have a second group following the same itinerary a week or two later. If demand exceeds available places, one idea which we are considering is prioritising those who have contributed as leaders, social team, path wardens, and other officers over the preceding year .
Thanks to all our volunteers, almost all our activities work very smoothly, almost all of the time. As the group has grown in numbers, and in the proportion of members working part time or retired, the popularity of the Wednesday walk has increased. Membership numbers at East Surrey Walkers place it 7th out of 14 Ramblers groups in Surrey, so not unusually big. Talking to other groups they are also finding increasing demand for weekday walks, which they are meeting by increasing the numbers of regular weekday walks, sometimes by leaders leading the same walk twice in a quarter but on different days of the week.
Over the last two years, thanks to our leaders, we have added more ambles, fast fitness walks and “beige” walks to our programme. With the popularity of the Wednesday morning walk the Committee has decided that the time has come to add another regular mid-week walk to our programme. A walk on Thursdays has been included in the Q4 planner (October – December) which is open to leaders to enter walks. We hope that leaders will support this addition, and that it will become popular with members.
After last year’s successful coach trip to Canterbury we will have a trip to Arundel with both long and short walks on Thursday 28th September. Booking will open in late July. We had a very good response to a new event for us this year - a weekend in Eastbourne from December 1st to 4th going by coach, staying in a hotel, and leading our own walks,
Enjoy the summer wherever you are walking!