Advice for walk leaders…

JANE’S WALK PRINCIPLES – we all, I’m sure, subscribe to these, but just as a reminder, here are the international Jane’s Walk Principles:

WALK HEAD COUNTS – please make sure that somebody on your walk is responsible for taking a head count as you set off. Although numbers do not always make the best walks (so don’t be disheartened if yours is small), this is the only way we can measure impact, and this is helpful at times for future funding applications etc.

BEING HEARD – this can be a big issue when walks recruit well in terms of numbers, and I anticipate this will affect a number of walks this year:

  • Allow a bit of time at stops for people to gather
  • Position yourself where possible so that you’re back is against the wall or similar, as a buffer, so your voice project fully outwards, and is least affected by peripheral noise.
  • Try out the new voice amplifier! Just be in touch to arrange….

ALLOW TIME TO RE-GROUP – on larger walks especially, walkers tend to trail out between stops. A bit of re-grouping keeps walkers engaged with what you’re saying and also helps with the problem of being heard (above).

GIVE NOTICE OF NEXT STOP – at each point on your walk it can help to give notice of your next destination. Again this is especially relevant to walks with large numbers where it really is possible to lose walkers in the busy town centre…

ENCOURAGE PHOTOGRAPHS – please encourage people to take photographs or ensure you have somebody lined up to do this. We always try to gather images from every walk. This year we have an Instagram account (janeswalkcolch) and same for twitter: #janeswalkcolch. And/or simply send images to me afterwards…

SAFETY – please think carefully through any safety issues you believe your walk may give rise to, even if simply managing large group numbers in the town centre. A word of caution given at the outset of your walk is always a good idea e.g. encouraging the group to stay together, to take care crossing roads etc. It may seem unnecessary, but it is also about ensuring that we have done what we can to make our walks safe….

IDENTIFYING YOURSELF AS WALK LEADER – please ensure that however you said in advance that you would identify yourself, you do in fact do so on the day!

Mapping our paths, trails, parks and green open spaces

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