Northallerton Ramblers

Working for Walkers

Guides and Info


Guidance for Walkers


You should believe yourself capable of completing the advertised walk. You walk at your own risk and are responsible for your own safey. The Ramblers Association provides insurance for the activities of the Group, but it does not cover the activities of individual Members.

Make sure you are dressed and equipped for the occasion, always carry waterproof clothing no matter how fine the start and how good the forecast,. Boots are the norm except in the driest conditions on an easy walk.

It is essential that you inform the leader in advance if you are intending to join the walk. Leaders are in charge of the walk and have the right to turn away ill equipped walkers. They will have recced the walk in advance. The leader will appoint a back marker, oversee safety on the walk and in bad weather the leader may alter the route. In severe weather the walk may be cancelled. You should not go ahead of the Leader or leave the walk without the permission of the walk leader.

Respect the countryside and walk in single file across meadowland and fields where crops have been sown. And remember - take nothing but photographs and leave nothing but footprints.

Dogs are not allowed on walks in view of a number of tragic incidents involving dogs and animals.

Please bring adequate food and drink, especially sufficient water in warm weather. There will be rest & refreshment stops during the walk and leaders will adjust the pace and the number / length of the breaks to take account of the needs of the group. There will usually be the opportunity to obtain refreshments at the end of the walk in a local tea room or hostelry.

The walks programme is fixed six monthly. It will be published on the web site with paper and emailed copies available on request. Any changes to the published programme will be posted on the web site. Details of weekly walks are published in the Darlington & Stockton Times.The programme details the approximate length and also the walks are classified as easy, moderate and strenuous. This is determined partly by the length of the walk but also by the terrain, eg, easy will be mainly on field paths and lanes, moderate is likely to be steep/rough in places. A strenuous walk may involve substantial climbing on rough ground.

Car sharing is actively encouraged by Northallerton Ramblers, and walk leaders will be able to offer advice to potential drivers and passengers for each walk. The system we operate is that the driver charges 20p per mile divided by the number of occupants, including the driver. Please make your own car sharing arrangements although the leader may be able to help based on his/her knowledge of who is intending to join the walk. Children are welcome on our walks when accompanied by their parent or carer, provided the leader agrees. Responsibility for the children remains with the parent or carer at all times. Some older children may be welcome to walk with the group unaccompanied provided express written consent is given by the parent or carer.

All local work, organising, secretarial, leading walks and footpath work is done on a voluntary basis. Our national organisation needs funds to pay for national matters, parliamentary bills, legal cases, countryside matters and campaigning. Please encourage others to join. Concessionary rates are available for full time students, people on means tested benefits or those solely reliant on the state pension.

Further details on

Application forms from the Secretary and walk leaders.

Guidance to Walk Leaders


This checklist is based on advice from the Ramblers Navigation and Leadership,
a manual for Leading Group Walks. Walks are led in different ways according to
Group practice and the nature of the walk. For more guidance about leading
walks see and click on Walks Leader.

Choose the route
● Consider the location, length and timing, whether linear or circular.
● Consider season, terrain, climbs, likely ability and fitness of the group.
● The route you chose may be one you already know, taken from a map or
guidebook. Consider points of interest on the route.
● Check transport options, such as public transport or car parks for central
meeting point, refreshments and toilets.
Recce the route (preferably with a backmarker)
● Walk full route, noting critical navigation points, hazards and problems,
adjusting route if necessary. Check timings, rest and toilet points, escape or
alternative routes, any access restrictions and mobile phone coverage.
● Report any path or access problems to relative Group Officers.
Publicising the walk
● In order to be recognised as a Ramblers walk the walk must be submitted to
the Programme Co-ordinator with the nominated leader identified, so that the
walk is publicised on-line, ideally on Group Walks Finder, and/or in print.

● Check weather forecasts, covers many mountainous
areas, and review route if necessary. Be prepared to cancel if weather is
too bad.
● Recheck public transport and forewarn pub/café if you plan to stop there.
● Check personal gear and first aid kit.
● Charge mobile phone.
● Be prepared to answer queries from potential attendees.

● Some Groups ask walkers to carry an emergency contact number and
medical details, other Groups ask the leader to record these details.
● Invite declarations from anyone who may have difficulty completing the walk.
This allows anyone with a medical condition to bring it to your attention
in private.
● Be early and welcoming, particularly to newcomers.
● Where appropriate check the equipment of the party and be prepared to turn
people away if circumstances demand.
● Hand out membership forms to non-members and explain the work of
the Ramblers.
● Appoint a backmarker if you don’t already have one.
● Introduce yourself and the backmarker and give details of the walk: the route,
estimated finish time, refreshment stops and points of interest.
● Highlight your expectations of walkers and any places where particular care
is needed.
● Adults accompanying children under 15 years must be reminded that they are
responsible for them and check that unaccompanied 15-17 year olds have
permission to attend.
● Count the party and signal the start of the walk.

● Frequently check that you can see your backmarker or have communication
with them. Allow for re-grouping as required.
● Set a pace to suit the fitness and capabilities of the party and advertised grade
of the walk.
● Check your route frequently if necessary using the map and/or compass.
● Make a point of chatting to any newcomers.
● Highlight any points of interest.
● Manage the party over stiles, through gates and forests, in poor weather and
across roads. Periodically count the number to ensure everyone is present.
● Be alert to any problems with individuals, weather, road walking or crossings.
● Importantly – enjoy the walk!
At the end of the walk
● Check everyone has returned and can get home and thank them for coming.
● Encourage non-members to join.

● All incidents must be reported to the Led Walks Officer as soon as practically
possible via the Incident Report Form available on the website. Report any
path problems to the relevant Group Officer.

First Aid


Heart attack
● Call 999/112.
● Sit them down leaning against a tree or the legs or back of another walker.
● Offer them an aspirin (300mg) to chew slowly.
● Give constant reassurance and prepare to resuscitate if necessary.

● Immobilise the injured part.
● Try to support the injury with items of clothing to prevent unnecessary
● As soon as possible call 999/112.
● For upper arm injuries encourage them to support the limb with their hand.

● Put pressure on the wound with whatever is available to stop or slow down the
flow of blood.
● As soon as possible call 999/112.
● Keep pressure on the wound until help arrives.

● Treat the cause.
● Help them to lie down. Raise and support the legs.
● Reassure them. Do not give them anything to eat or drink.
● Call 999/112 and prepare to resuscitate if necessary.

Sprains and strains
● Rest the injured part.
● Ice – the best thing is ice but failing that use a cold wet cloth.
● Comfortably support.
● Elevate injured part.

● Call 999/112.
● Your aim is to warm them up gradually.
● Take them to a sheltered place, remove and replace any wet clothing.
● Wrap them in an emergency blanket or use any other insulating material; dry
leaves, heather, remember to cover their head and to put insulating items
underneath them.
● Give warm drinks and high energy foods.

Heat exhaustion
● Call 999/112.
● Help them to a cool place in the shade, get them to lie down and raise
their legs.
● Give water in small amounts frequently until they recover.

Administering first aid does not invalidate Ramblers insurance. Rather, it is better
to do something than nothing.

Map Library


Northallerton Ramblers, OS Explorer Active Map Collection, August 2013.


Map No. Map Description
OL 2 Yorkshire Dales South
OL30 Yorkshire Dales North
OL26 North York Moors West
OL27 North York Moors East
OL19 Howgills and Eden Valley
OL31 North Pennines, Teesdale and Weardale
OL302 Northallerton and Thirsk
OL298 Nidderdale


Map Loans.
Maps can be borrowed from the Walks Secretary. Loan requests by email please. Loan period
should be up to 3 weeks, borrow and return maps on walks. Walk Sec will keep a loan register.

Martin Davies.
Walks Sec, Northallerton Ramblers
August 12th, 2013

Becoming a Walk Contributor


Contributors need to have a registered account on the Ramblers main website at using a personal email address. If you joined Ramblers via their website over the internet then you will have an account already. Otherwise you will need to register by clicking on Register on their home page. Login to Ramblers by going to the home page and clicking on Login at the top of the page (you must supply the email address you registered with and your password).

Once registered, a prospective contributor will then need to provide an Editor (see below) with the following:

  • email address that they used when registering with Ramblers
  • firstname and surname
  • membership number
  • postcode

With this information, one of the Editors can Nominate the member as a contributor. This is a manual process carried out by the Walkfinder Team who will, once they have added the member as a contributor, email both the new contributor and the editor to confirm they can begin adding walks.

Editors for Northallerton Ramblers are:

  • Martin Davis (Walk Secretary) 01609 881659
  • George Bateman (Recruitment & Publicity) 01609 771169
  • Ian Hobson (Webmaster) 01609 748564

Once you are confirmed as a Contributor, you will be able to:

  • Add walks and events details and save drafts
  • Edit their own draft and unpublished details, and submit for approval
  • View unpublished walks submitted by other contributors and editors in their group
  • Generate printed programmes for their group
  • View other information including the contacts database and reports for their group
  • Cancel their own walks
  • Add After the walk information to their own walks

Walking near Livestock

Here is an article from Ramblers which gives advice on the dangers and precautions when Walking near Livestock.

Click on the link below to view:

Ramblers advice


Walking Best Practice Guide

In order to ensure Ramblers walks are as safe and as pleasurable as possible, Ramblers offer best practice advice to both walkers and walk leaders. This guidance is published on our web site (see Guides page from drop down walking menu) where there are Guides for Walkers, for Walk Leaders, and First Aid.
Part of the Walk Secretary's role is to help ensure the group is meeting the basic best practice standards, and that we continue to meet the requirements of the Ramblers Insurance policy. I believe the group is currently certainly meeting these requirements. Importantly, we have a sound policy of carrying out walk recces, providing a good walk briefing on distance, terrain and difficulty, appointing backmarkers, controlling walk pace, and have experienced walk leaders. New Walk Leaders are encouraged and supported by experienced mentors.
However with the larger walk groups that can arise, there are areas where we could perhaps make improvements to our approach.

Areas we could improve:
Nationally the level of problems on Ramblers walks is very low with issues arising mainly on roads, with farm animals and falls/illnesses. Communication within the walk group is important to help avoid problems, and to help deal with them. We have been fortunate in having few incidents on our walks.

Following our AGM discussion the group has purchased sufficient kit to allow us to trial:
Better communications on walks.
More visibility on Roads and Road crossings.
A lightweight safety kit available for walk leaders.

We have available:
A lightweight TREK First Aid Kit.
A set of fluorescent yellow waistcoats.
A set of whistles and compasses.
A walkie-talkie set.

My recommendation is that walk leaders/back markers borrow and make use of this kit, especially on well attended walks. The kit will be passed along from walk to walk via walk leaders or intermediaries depending on circumstances. This will be done on a trial basis for several months to check out advantages and disadvantages. If successful we would aim to invest in more equipment to simplify hand overs etc. I hope that walk leaders feel that they can support this initiative to potentially help the group better manage its walks.
Users of the kit should report comments on its value, good or bad, to Robert Donaldson when they report walk numbers. Only one walk each week will have the kit until the trial is over. Handover arrangements informally between successive leaders. Robert will track kit location etc.

Please get back to me if any questions or concerns. Again, this is meant to be a help, and use is entirely voluntary as promised at our AGM.

Martin Davies,Walk Sec, April 2016

Guidance on Walk Planning


The overall aim is to have two contrasting walks each Thursday, so that we always offer an 8 to 10-mile walk complemented by either a shorter /easier walk or a longer more strenuous walk.
Winter walks need to be within one hours travelling time. It is also the time to try city, town or canal walks etc. If it suits, of course you can add walks further afield for the longer days in February and March.
In the Spring, Summer, and Autumn there is more scope to include more strenuous walks including walks further afield.
However, do not forget to time walks to match features such as bluebells, flowering heather, autumn colours etc. Please also take account of the impact of seasonal vegetation and crops in the summer and avoid known muddy paths in Winter etc
Walks can be submitted at any time up to a year ahead but the priority is to have a complete programme for the next 3 months. This gives us time to put together & publish a programme
 Please use the walks submission system or pass your details to one of our submission “experts”. If you are a new leader, please contact Ian Hobson so he can help you to get “set up “on the Walkfinder system. More detailed instructions, if needed, including a video, are available on our web site. Contact Ian or ourselves if you have a problem making a walk submission However, if you are uncomfortable submitting your walk electronically, just let Robert and myself have details by email or a written note.
In terms of timing, where you can be flexible, please try to fill gaps in the programme ideally with a contrasting walk .You can check on Walks already submitted. If not yet published they are NOT shown on the walks programme on our web site but instead, still on the Walking drop down box on our web site, click Walk Submission -Walkfinder to sign into your ramblers account (contact Ian if you have not registered) This takes you into Group Walks and Events where you can see a list of proposed walks and dates awaiting approval (as well as a list of published walks) You can click on the Add a Walk icon to input your walk details

There has perhaps been some uncertainty about the relative timing of walk submissions and walk recces. Best practice is to submit a walk proposal first ,and then carry out a recce once the walk has been approved ,making any necessary changes to walk details using the online editing system ,or by contacting George or Robert. Remember you can plan your walk at home by using the Walk Planner icon on the Walking Drop Down box on our web site. This gives an indication of the distance, a route profile and, if needed, an aerial view of the walk

We can help with ideas, publications, maps and planning
If you are short of walk ideas you can borrow from our extensive collection of walk books, leaflets and maps.
On the internet there are several sources of information especially if you have a location or area in mind. These. Include
-a Google search such as " walks in .........." Just one example is
- the walks available on the North Yorkshire CC, North York Moors or Yorkshire Dales NP sites
- Ramblers Routes of the national Ramblers web sites
-  The archive of our previous walks on the Northallerton Ramblers web site. A walk can be repeated or modified especially now we have 2 walks each week
 Pick up walk details from Information Centres and Newspapers
Finally, Robert and George, as Walk Editors, as well as other Members can give you ideas and share their knowledge of the local area.

This also allows you to submit a walk proposal first ,and then carry out a recce once the walk has been approved ,making any changes to walk details.
Many thanks to the over 20 leaders who have led walk in the last year, BUT we have around 100 walks each year and over 40 fairly regular walkers – so we need more leaders to fairly share the burden.
We are keen to meet the specific individual needs of new leaders
We know from experience how daunting it is to lead your first walk but you know that we need more leaders if we are to have a full programme or to over burdening some existing leaders. We and many existing leaders are prepared to help (mentoring is the posh word) new leaders by sharing the recce, other aspects of planning and on the actual walk. We should also emphasise that the leader’s responsibilities are more limited than sometimes portrayed eg it is not leaders role to organise transport. We can also arrange training on leading or a aspect which concerns you. Let us know what you want
Please help us to put together a really good programme. 
George and Robert

Reporting Footpath Problems

Reporting Footpath Problems

Ramblers is a campaigning charity for protecting our National network of footpaths. Each group has a Footpath Officer who deals with all footpath issues. In our group this covers most of the Hambleton area.

We are in an era of ever more cut backs & restricted budgets & footpaths are perhaps not high on the agenda. But we need to keep reporting problems. If we don't report problems, we are giving councils a reason to cut resources even further

If you have a problem with a right of way, then it should be reported to the appropriate authority.  If you are in Hambleton and Richmondshire outside the national parks that is North Yorkshire County Council You can find their web pages on rights of way here NYCC Rights of Way. These provide details of their responsibilities and has a collection of guides to public rights of way relating both to users and landowners and is worth exploring.
To report a problem email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .We suggest you provide details of the location, ideally including the grid reference. A photograph is the best way of illustrating the issue. To double check on a location use the Walk Planner on this site or NYCC’s Rights of Way map.
In the National Parks reports should either be submitted to: 
North York Moors NP Report Form or
Yorkshire Dales NP Rights of Way Information Page with email contact details.
If you feel that John Marshall, our footpath officer should be involved then please contact him by telephone on 01642 701960.
Ramblers Footpath Officers work with other volunteers in their local area and liaise with local authorities to sort out footpath problems and inspect changes to the footpath network such as checking path diversions and path closures. They also help claim new paths for walkers.
You can also download the Ramblers Pathwatch app. This is available for Android or Apple & lets you use your smart phone or tablet to report path problems there & then. No waiting till you you get home, no trying to remember exactly where it was, no excuse for forgetting. Your device will have the OS coordinates & you can take a photo of the problem.
This link will take you to to Pathwatch on The Ramblers main web site where you can report path features and problems.

Saturday, January 19, 2019