Minutes for 18thy March 2017

Marches LDWA

18th March Stiperstones Inn Minutes



Janet Pitt Lewis, Colin Edmundson, Jenny Winn, Jane Webb, Neil Fullwood, Mike Nurse, Francoise Nurse, (Helen Sutton, Mick Clayton, Heart of England), Dave Clarke, Phil Clarke, Michael Cook, Lucy McFarlane, Ian Latham, Dave Nichols



Colin Petit, John Morris, Dave Wright, Simon Beedles


1. Minutes 2016 read and approved.

Matters arising – The proposed joint hundred was soon seen as a non-viable option and the the LDWA had reveived a bid from Northumberland to host the 2019 Hundred. Craig Douglas had resigned as Social Walks co-ordinator but his name had remained on the December Strider, Geoff stated it had been removed from the next edition.


2. Chair's report

Jenny reported on a year of successful but often stressful challenge walks.



4. Treasurers report : In his absence Roger's reportt was read and accepted. Total assets of £115642 an increase of £1600 on the previous year. A full accounts report is available.


5. Secretary's report

Geoff reported on the LDWA secretaries meeting at Stratford in November.

The main points were:-


That the LDWA and all groups should carry out a future planning exercise.


That it was recommended that all groups increase their social media presence to make the organisation more accessible to younger members or potential members.


That groups should be aware of data protection legislation.

These would be discussed later in the meeting.


6. 2016 SSC

Neil and Jane reported on a successful event which was over subscribed as usual. A late change of venue had been necessary but this had not caused too many problems.


7. 2016 WOW

Janet reported that although the event had been very successful from the walkers point of view there had been many behind the scenes issues with marshals having to operate for long hours sometimes at more than one checkpoint. Geoff had received an email stating that two of our self clips had not been collected on the first leg which had not been swept.

Despite the relatively low entry the event seems very appreciated by those who took part.



8. 2016 Tour de Marches

Phil reported on another successful event with a surplus of £1120. The coasters which were given this year to all finishers were well received. The Firefighter charity had received £200 and Wistanstow Village Hall £650 from the surplus of the 2015 event.


9. 2016 Plum Pudding Plod

While again the event was enormously enjoyed by all who took part, the group was again struggling with a shortage of marshals and helpers with a result that the hall was not left in a the required state, with Geoff and Sue having to return to put matters straight. There was some feeling that it would always be difficult when the Saturday was part of the Christmas weekend.


10. Elections

Jenny, Geoff and Roger all agreed to remain in post.


11. Storage update

The majority of equipment is now in the basement of 12 Hexham Way The group has keys and access is available without disturbing Anne and Paul. All old foodstuffs have been destroyed and food residues should not be stored there.


12 Cancellation of the 2017 WOW

The Wenlock Olympian Committee were disappointed by our decision in January to cancel this year's event. The group will be in discussion with them as to how a future event could be run with better support.

It was felt that as the Holgate ladies had been so supportive of us in the past that a donation 0f £100 should be made, and the possibility of organising a social walk from the church be explored.


13 Marshals and Event Organisers Expense

In a move to lessen any financial restraint that organisers or marshals may feel it was agreed that event organisers should be given a working capital of £250 to set against planning and pre event costs.

After some discussion it was felt that while many marshals would not expect out of pocket expenses, those who travel long distances or come from other groups would be encouraged if renumeration was available. It was agreed that a claim form, attached to the event briefing sheet should be offered to all marshals.


14 Organisation of Challenge Walks

Geoff presented a document outlining the responsibilities of event organisers. This it was felt highlighted the nature of the task and served as a supportive issue on item 12.

This document will available on line.

It was suggested that we try and pull together all old route descriptions and that a review of food/drink usage be kept after each event.


15. Future planning

Geoff had made available online a member response survey.

The reponse to this was encouraging .

The feedback from those completing the form was.


Most new members join the LDWA to enter Challenge Walks


Overall satisfaction with the group was good.


The group does well in holding major challenge walks which are seen as well planned, organised and offer great value for money. The friendliness of marshals was highlighted. The online publicity and information was useful.


The group does not do well at encouraging members to be more active in the running of the group. The lack of social walks disallows any opportunity to talk to potential members helpers away from the stress of a challenge walk. More than one response highlighted a reluctance to accept help when it is offered. From discussion at the meeting it appeared that the current use of the LDWA bulk mail service was failing to pass on information to all members. Our input in Strider is not suggestive of an active and inclusive group.

It was decided that Geoff would write to all Marches members, passing on our concerns for the future of our flagship events, our lack of an active social walks programme and seeking a response as to how members might support the group more. The aim being to create a bank of potential helpers who could be contacted personally well before events take place.

Other ideas included:-


An up to date email checkpoint


A group walk training day


Sharing social walk responsibilities


16. Data protection and old records

Geoff gave information on current LDWA guidelines:-


No personal data from entrants to be kept longer than three years.


This applies to soft and hard copies.


Names and results sheets are OK unless participants have asked to be removed.

17. Lost pathways

The government have set a cut off date 2026 for the claiming of pathways that are not on the current rights of way schedule. The Ramblers Associated are heading the response for walking organisations and there is more information online.

Geoff, supported by Phil Clarke and Lucy McFarlane pointed to much good work done by Shropshire Council and its volunteer force within the Parish Path Partnerships in maintaining footpaths and repairing furniture. Geoff proposed that the group donate £250 to the funding of these schemes on the condition that the council guarantees that the money will be spent wholly on footpath repair. This was accepted.

Geoff to discuss this at the next Council Walking Forum.


18 AoB

Jane proposed that following their support for the 2017 SSC that the group donates £100 to the 'Foodhub'. This was accepted.


There followed a long 10 mile walk to Earls Hill over some lesser known trails.



Geoff Sproson