When you stroll along the well maintained paths in the Cotswolds you may wonder who has fixed the stile, replaced a stile with a gate or repaired the adjacent drystone wall. The volunteers who carry out path maintenance and improvement, educational visits and guided walks has been recognised by being awarded the Queens Award for Voluntary Service. The volunteers help conserve the landscape, improve biodiversity and enable access to the countryside.
Lord Gardiner of Kimble, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Rural Affairs and Biosecurity writes ‘The Cotswolds are such an iconic part of our nation’s landscape, with beautiful villages, towns and countryside. Your voluntary work make such a fulsome contribution to why these places are so special and important. I know your hard work is much appreciated by residents and visitors alike’.
This time of year there are plenty of people walking the numerous footpaths. Farmers mention there is an increase in the number of gates being left open and incidents with dogs and livestock. To avoid this, especially near cattle we suggest you refer to the Countryside Code.
In 2017 WWAW contacted Taylor Wimpey to improve the muddy unofficial path behind Wyndham Way between Riverside and the Dell. Tewkesbury Borough Council (TBC) took control of the project as the path will connect with The Dell, the transfer of land ownership to TBC is still under discussion since April 2015. WWAW is pleased to say the current work, funded by Taylor Wimpey is nearing completion with some minor raising of the path level adjacent to The Dell. The new, official path will finally link with the existing path at The Dell once TBC take ownership of The Dell. Currently the link is not accessible to pushchairs.
During the winter work has taken place to avoid some steep and hazardous steps near Monks Hole on the Gloucestershire Way leading up the escarpment. The path now circumnavigates a badger sett and reduces the gradient making the route safer. Two stiles at the top and bottom of the slope are being changed to kissing gates by the Cotswold Voluntary Wardens. This is another step with improving the surface of the long distance path.