This is an archived press release
Monday 21 March 2005
21 March 2005
Wrecks and railways a hit for Walking Festival
Walks are being booked up already for the first Peak District Walking Festival - with aircraft wrecks and railways proving the biggest draw.
The Festival, from April 16 to May 2, will be one of the biggest in the country, featuring 150 new walks with expert guides all over the Peak District. There are still plenty of choices available for all abilities and interests, but bookings are essential, and people are advised to make their reservations fast on 0870 444 7275.
Fully booked are: Aircraft Wrecks on Bleaklow (April 24), Station to Station in the Hope Valley (April 16), Railway Tunnel Walks (April 17), Navigation for Improvers (April 16) and Wirksworth Wapentake Wander (April 23).
Among the options still available are: Literary Trails through Castleton, Caverns by Candlelight, Old Pubs of Wirksworth, a choice of biodiversity walks looking at wildlife, a Roaches Rocky Ramble, Wildlife in Dovedale, Buxton Town Trail and Leek Arts and Crafts Trail.
The first Peak District Walking Festival, aimed at boosting overnight visitors in the early part of the season, has been organised by Visit Peak District, the tourism partnership of the Peak District National Park Authority and Derbyshire Dales, High Peak and Staffordshire Moorlands councils.
The Peak District is a prime location for a Walking Festival, as it is already one of the most popular areas for ramblers, hikers and strollers amid some of the most spectacular scenery in the country.
World-beating yachtswoman Ellen MacArthur grew up near Wirksworth, and, she says: "I love coming back to the Peak District - my favourite place has to be the Midshires Way and the network of tracks round my mum and dad's home."
Many festival walks are free, and they vary in length - several are accessible for wheelchairs and buggies, others amble through historic towns and villages, and some are aimed at those with fitness and stamina for hikes among the hills.
Walking Festival guides are available at Tourist Information Centres throughout the Peak District, or by logging onto www.visitpeakdistrict.com/walk or by ringing 0870 444 7275. You can also find a Walking Festival supplement in the Peak District 2005 newspaper, available at information centres or libraries.