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Eccleshall launches 'bench to bench' walks

By Staffordshire Newsletter  |  Posted: April 02, 2014

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IF there are times when a brisk walk is too daunting, how about a gentle amble?

That's the idea behind a new series of "bench to bench" walks around Eccleshall produced by local parish councillor Mary Dodkins and keen walker Ray Gillibrand.

They have devised two leaflets showing the location of benches in and around the town centre, with the distances between them.

The idea is to give anyone who has limited mobility the chance of some gentle exercise with resting places in between.

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Mrs Dodkins, of Usulwall Close, said the walks were also suitable for anyone who wanted to take in the sights and sounds of Eccleshall at their own pace, with pauses to sit and watch the world go by.

"People with walking difficulties can be put off from going out and about if they think there will be nowhere to stop and get their breath back," she said.

"So it seemed a very simple idea to put a map together with the location of every bench in Eccleshall to help people plan a suitable walk."

Mr Gillibrand, who also organises walks for Eccleshall's Fellowship Group, set to work with a GPS and a set of maps to plan the routes.

"When Mary suggested this I thought it was a brilliant idea," he said.

"We have had a lot of positive feedback - people have asked why no one thought of this before, but I suppose somebody has to think of it first.

"We hope this will take off. It's the kind of idea that could be rolled out nationally if communities take it on."

The shortest walk in the leaflets is a 34-yard stroll between benches near Holy Trinity Church, and the longest is an ambitious 1,500 yards along Blurtons Lane, on the outskirts of Eccleshall.

The leaflets are available free from Eccleshall Library.

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