Discover the joys of walking this year


Published Wednesday 13 January 2016

Help is at hand for those looking to start walking more in 2016, with the launch of two new healthy walking groups in the New Forest.

The groups are based in Ringwood and led by trained volunteer walk leaders, supported by the New Forest National Park Authority. Leaders are on hand to support and encourage all walkers, irrespective of their speed or ability, helping you to get active and stay healthy.

These walking groups are part of the Walking for Health scheme, a partnership between Macmillan Cancer Support and The Ramblers, which offers over 3,000 walks each week across the UK.

Taking part in regular short group walks at a comfortable pace is a great way to stretch your legs, explore what’s on your doorstep, make new friends and improve your health

The Ringwood walks start from Ringwood Medical Centre, The Close, Ringwood, at 1.30pm on the first and third Tuesday in the month, with the first walk taking place on Tuesday 2 February.

The Poulner walks starts from Cornerways Medical Centre, Parkers Close, Ringwood, at 1.30pm on the second and fourth Wednesday in the month, with the first walk taking place on Wednesday 10 February.

Craig Daters, New Forest National Park Authority Ranger, said: ‘A nice walk around beautiful scenery can provide us all with a break from our busy lives. The New Forest is a great place to get some fresh air, reduce stress, exercise or relax – and what better than the natural health service offered by the New Forest Walking for Health scheme?

‘We’re delighted to be helping to launch these new walking groups around Ringwood and I hope they will help local people enjoy a healthier, more active life this year.’

The majority of the routes will be on paved footpaths, but some short sections may cross soft or uneven ground, so please wear suitable footwear.

For more information visit or contact Craig Daters on 01590 646 671 or

Notes to Photo Editor:

Walkers take part in a Walking for Health stroll near Fordingbridge.

Notes to Editor:

About the New Forest National Park Authority

Protect - Enjoy - Prosper

The New Forest National Park Authority’s statutory purposes are to:

  • Conserve and enhance the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the Park - Protect.
  • Promote opportunities for understanding and enjoyment of its special qualities – Enjoy.

We also have a duty to:

  • Seek to foster the social and economic well-being of local communities within the Park – Prosper.

The New Forest National Park was designated in March 2005. Its unique landscape has been shaped over the centuries by grazing ponies, cattle and pigs which roam free. Majestic woodlands, rare heathland and a spectacular coastline provide fabulous opportunities for quiet recreation, enjoyment and discovery.

Visit to find out more.

Media Contacts:

Matt Stroud, Communications Officer, New Forest National Park Authority
Tel: 01590 646650

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