A NEW sponsorship agreement to support walking groups with maintaining and promoting local recreational trails has been announced by Ilkley Brewery.

The Brewery will donate 10p per pint of a new ‘Walkers’ beer to four Walkers are Welcome groups and to the Burley Bridge Association. The beer will be available over the coming months in pubs along two trails - the Welcome Way and the Yorkshire Heritage Way.

Walkers are Welcome groups created the circular 36 mile Welcome Way trail in 2016 to link their communities of Otley, Burley in Wharfedale, Bingley and Baildon. It has become popular with both walkers and runners, partly because of excellent accessibility to public transport, with a revised second edition route guide recently published after the first edition sold out.

The Burley Bridge Association is launching the 42 mile Yorkshire Heritage Way between Bradford and Ripon on April 29 at Bradford Cathedral. The route links Saltaire and Fountains Abbey & Studley Royal World Heritage sites and passes through Burley in Wharfedale and the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Marco Cilenti, Sales Manager from Ilkley Brewery said: "We are delighted that we have been able to develop a sponsorship arrangement with the four local Walkers are Welcome groups and the Burley Bridge Association. We have been particularly aware of how important walking and running has become for so many people during periods of lockdown over the past couple of years, and it’s great that trails like the Welcome Way and the Yorkshire Heritage Way have been created to give people encouragement and the confidence to explore further afield. We are excited about launching our new Yorkshire Heritage beer at the Ripon Beer Festival at Ripon Cathedral on Monday 2 May on the final day of the inaugural walk of the trail, and to introducing it at pubs along the route over the following weeks. Similarly, our Welcome Way blonde will shortly be found in pubs along the Welcome Way route and can be guaranteed to meet the needs of the thirstiest of walkers and runners. Anyone wanting information about how to stock the beer should contact info@ilkleybrewery.co.uk"

David Asher, Secretary of the Burley Bridge Association and Chair of Burley Walkers are Welcome, said: "The four Walkers are Welcome groups and the Burley Bridge Association are looking forward to a mutually beneficial relationship with Ilkley Brewery. Any income the groups receive through the sponsorship arrangement will be put to good use in promoting and developing the two routes, including improving access. I am particularly pleased that the new Yorkshire Heritage beer will be available for quenching thirst at the launch weekend of the trail! Everyone is welcome to attend the launch at Bradford Cathedral between 9.00 and 10.00 on Friday 29 April and to join in with the inaugural walk which starts immediately afterwards and continues over the weekend."

For more information about the launch and the inaugural walk of the Yorkshire Heritage Way, or to reserve places, contact burleybridge@gmail.com or visit www.burleybridge.com