Social walks: leaders' guidelines

Updated 28Mar2023 - Tea & Cakes walks described

We use Google Sheets to allow leaders to select the date(s) on which they wish to lead walks.

The Sheet has a row for each date, with columns for you to enter your name for any of the dates when you could lead a walk. There are many months in each Sheet. If you would like to offer an extra date by all means insert a new row in the Sheet.

If you can lead only on a specific date use the "Definite" column, otherwise use the next free "Possible" column to mark more than one date, so we can pick just ONE of them.

The "Starting at" column can be filled in for any "Definite" date, otherwise, it will be updated as walk details come in.

Those of you who are not familiar with Google Sheets (similar to Excel spreadsheets) should note that:

  • On your phone you will have to have the Google Sheets App installed; this requires you to tap the "Done" icon after entering any data - the saving is not automatic.
  • On a PC you don't have to "save" any changes - that happens automatically if you press Tab or Enter after making a change.
  • To enter your name in one of the columns, just double-click the cell and type/paste your name.
  • If you make a mistake you can use Ctrl-Z to undo the change.

The details should be submitted as soon as you have them.

If you have any trouble with this method you can email your dates and walk details to the Walks Coordinator ( as before.

The details required for each walk are:

  • walk title
  • date and start time
  • distance
  • ascent on the walk, or an indication of how hilly it is if this is not available, so walkers can have some idea of how difficult the walk might be
  • start location and grid reference; if you would like to do a linear walk, using public transport for the outward (preferred) or return journey, then TVLDWA will pay the fares of the walkers between the start and finish
  • any notes about the walk
  • the leader's name and phone number(s) as they are to appear on the web
  • the maps used.

Remember that we need to keep an attendance register for each walk. A form can be downloaded here; the type of event is "Social walk". People who refuse to give their data should be informed that they will not be covered by the LDWA third-party insurance whilst on the walk. After the form is completed you may:

  • Give it to the Walks Coordinator the next time you meet.
  • Take a photo/scan of the list and send it to, who will acknowledge receipt; your local copies and the paper version should then be destroyed.

LDWA insurance on a walk recce. Strider issue 145, December 2019, on page 49, mentions that you can be covered by the LDWA insurance on a walk recce. Submit a walk entry whose title starts with the word RECCE; supply the leader's name, the date, and the names of any other people on the walk; this walk will not appear in Strider. There is no need for a walk register since the required information is contained in the walk entry.

Dogs. Please read the advice from the LDWA (in PDF form) here about dogs on walks. We have to ensure walkers don't turn up with dogs, only to be turned away. If you don't want dogs please say so in your proposal, bearing in mind that assistance dogs are almost always permissible. If you allow a dog on a walk please instruct the owner to keep the dog under close control (using a short lead) so as not to affect other walkers.

Weekend walks

  • Some of the more popular challenge events are shown on the Sheet, to give an indication of how many are likely to attend our walk. If you notice any errors/omissions please feel free to fix/add them.
  • Weekend walks normally start at 09.00, and are about 20 miles; in December and January, you may wish to reduce the distance, to finish in daylight.
  • On the second (and sometimes the fourth) Sunday of each month, we try to offer an additional walk of about 15 miles, walked at a slower pace. To increase possibilities for car-sharing both should preferably start at the same time and place (often selected by the first person to commit to the date), though this is not mandatory; if the walks start at different places you should be prepared for people to choose the more convenient walk, rather than the one which matches their abilities. If you fancy leading either walk don't worry about finding someone for the other one; if you indicate your preference we'll pass your email address to the person who wants to lead on the same day so you can coordinate.
  • We support subsidised (i.e. free) tea and cakes during walks:
    • We aim to hold up to four such events a year.
    • The preference is for charitable events rather than commercial tea rooms.
    • The maximum subsidy will be £7.50 per head per event for all walkers; this could be a partial subsidy if costs were greater than this, e.g. you may have to buy your own drinks.
    • The maximum budget is £400 per year, so the subsidy per head would be reduced if necessary for later events.
    • Please contact beforehand with anticipated costs, so the committee can be consulted if necessary.
    • Examples of potentially suitable events are:
      • Swyncombe Snowdrop Teas in February.
      • Fingest Walkers Cafe in April, August, October.
      • Blewbury Church summer tea and cakes.

Midweek walks

  • These are usually on alternate Wednesdays.
  • They normally start at 9.30 (or later if you think the traffic may be a problem).
  • They are about 15 miles, without an excessive amount of climbing, and not too fast, since we're trying to encourage newcomers.