40th Anniversary Celebration for Thames Valley Group

This is the page for the 40th Anniversary of Thames Valley LDWA, which happened in 2016. This features the 40 Highest Hills updated with full GRs. A GPX of all the locations is now available. If you have any queries please contact Barry Boddy by email. Our special events are listed below.

40th anniversary events programme for 2016

Sunday 21 February - Founding Walk Remembered (lead Anushka Howell);

Sunday 15 May - Thames path and boat voyage (lead Clive West);

Sunday 19 June - 40 km walk (lead Gerry Garland);

Sunday 17 July - Kanter (lead Steve Mee);

Sunday 4 September - walk + BBQ + optional steam train ride at Chinnor (lead Jeff Smith);

Saturday 29 October - Halloween night walk (lead Gary Upstone);

Free commemorative badge to any participant in any event.

Entry into prize draw for any walker getting around the 40 hills during 2016. Draw was at 2016 Christmas party and prize was a set of Wainwright guide books.

Founding Walk Remembered

Report on the 40th Anniversary Party, 21st February 2016 by Barry Boddy.

The Foundation walk for the Thames Valley LDWA group was in February 1976, starting and finishing at Maidenhead Station. It involved 6 people and they walked via Ashley Hill. It is impossible to copy the route exactly now because of motorways and urban developments etc., but 40 years later the new intake of Thames Valley walkers remembered this founding event.

On February 21st 2016 around 50 people met at Braywick and the Maidenhead Athletics club during the day. Around 30-38 walkers did all or part of the 15 mile route led by Anushka. A photographer from the local Maidenhead Advertiser newspaper was on hand to record the start and they were cheered off. It is impossible to be more accurate on numbers because of people joining and leaving at different points. Duncan appeared out of the woods at coffee time and shorter distance walkers joined later at Littlewick Green. Others just left their house and joined in. Excellent.

At the finish a party then was held at the Athletics club with enough food to feed twice the number, but seats were found for all, and the future of the club was toasted in Prosecco or non-alcoholic equivalent. The cut cake was a marvellous affair with icing figures of the swan (traditional logo) and a red kite flying over the green icing mounds of the Chiltern Hills. Past and present chairmen (Martin and Steve) led the ceremony.

We were also treated to a presentation from Bob Ford – one of the original walkers in 1976 – who recounted some of our early history. Bob had easily walked the 15 miles in the morning dressed in his traditional kit consisting of a jeans, trench coat and shopping bag held in hand all the way. Perhaps things have changed a bit.

Many thanks to the catering team Val, Yvette and Trish and all the other helpers.

Photos of the event

There are several sets of commemorative photos:

  • A group photo montage of the day includes contributions from Bill Dunn, Ron Doole, Tony Turton Anushka Howell and Barry Boddy:
  • Bob Ford's personal montage of photos of LDWA history is available on Flickr.
  • An album of group photos from 2006-2016 compiled by Anushka Howell, is also available on Flickr.
  • The Maidenhead Advertiser photos:

Thames Path and Boat Trip

To Zero via the Great Wen and the Dogs. Organised by Clive West on Sunday 15th May. 13 miles on foot (including 400 yards underwater) and 8 miles by boat.

40 Kilometre Anniversary Walk

Slightly more of a challenge in distance than normal Sunday social walks and was led by Gerry Garland on Sunday 19th June at a socially sympathetic pace and refreshments were available at Marlow.

Krazy Kowleaze Kanter

A Fun Kanter on Sunday 17th July as part of Thames Valley LDWA’s 40th Anniversary Celebrations.

The aim was to collect as many correct answers as possible in the time allowed. It allowed the participants to determine how far they wished to walk and by what route. The participants were issued with a list of grid references and clues to be answered when they registered on the day. The list of grid references was in the order of a full 23-mile circuit that included 3,500ft of climb with information to shorten to 12, 15, 18 or 20 miles. However the participants were free to determine their own route and order of visiting the grid references. Walkers could walk alone or in small groups and this was an opportunity for those with good map reading skills to help those who want to learn or improve their map reading skills.

Where: At the North End of Cowleaze Wood Car Park Grid Reference SU 7273 9586

Programme:

  • Registration commenced 08:30
  • Registration ended 09:30
  • Cakes and soft drinks available from 16:00
  • Walk to end by 17:00
  • Clues were answered at 17:00

Equipment Required: All participants were to carry their own food and water and wear suitable clothing as they would for any social walk or walk on their own taking into account the weather conditions on the day. A member of each group, including lone walkers, was to carry a mobile phone that had to be fully charged at the start and switched on. All participants required a mug for a drink at the end, and a compass, an Explorer Map 171 and a pen or pencil to write their answers.

Other Information: All participants were to register with the coordinator at the start and advise the members in each group and a mobile telephone contact number for each group of walkers. They were issued with a list of grid references and clues at the time of registering and were able to start walking from this time.

On completion participants were to check in with the coordinator prior to 17:00.

The clues were answered en-masse at 17:00.

Walk + BBQ + Steam Train

Sunday September 4th; CHINNOR STEAM WALK; c15 miles, 9.00 at Chinnor Village Centre. Map:Exp 181 (GR SP758010). Shorter Walk 5 miles available. Leaders Barry Boddy and Jeff Smith. All finished in time for Chinnor Steam train ride at 3.00pm, followed by BBQ at Wheatsheaf pub at 3.30-4.00pm.

BBQ cost £5 per head for £15 menu (subsidised by group funds); Train cost £4 per head.

Train location GR SP757005 (NOTE car park is locked after last train at 4.30pm); Wheatsheaf pub location GR SP 749004.

Halloween Night Walk

Saturday 29th October.