Review: Classic Day Walks in England & Wales. 20 of the UK’s Best Walks. Edited by Jon Barton. Published by Vertebrate. £14.95

I SUPPOSE this book could also be entitled “The Best Of”. For the last 15 years, Vertebrate have been producing books containing 20 Day Walks in various regions, starting with Day Walks in the Peak District in 2005. Thirteen of the authors in this series have been asked to choose their favourites from 15 different books and have produced twenty classic walks in England and Wales.

Ten walks are in Northern England from Northumberland down to the Peak District, six walks are in Southern England including East Anglia, the Cotswolds, the South East and Devon & Cornwall and four walks are in Wales – two in Snowdonia, one in the Brecon Beacons and one on the Pembrokeshire Coast. Nineteen of the walks are circular, the only exception being the one in East Anglia from Hunstanton to Titchwell Marsh, but details of the bus service from Titchwell RSPB reserve is given to get walkers back to the start.

I know quite a number of these walks, particularly the Northern England section with walks in Northumberland, Lake District, North York Moors, Yorkshire Dales and the Peak District but also Wales where I walked the Carneddau and also Moel Siabod when I undertook my Mountain Leadership Course in the 80s and also the Pembrokeshire walk from when I attended a geography field course from Prince Henry’s Grammar School in 1969.

Each of the walks has a full colour map along with a step by step set of directions. The walks range in distance from six kilometres (3.9 miles) to 20.9 kilometres (13 miles). All of the walks in England have less than 2,000 feet of ascent but the first two of the four Welsh walks have ascents of over 3,000 feet but with distances of over 10 miles, are not too demanding. On three of the walks there is a possible shortcut available if time is limited or depending on walking abilities of the individuals or the vagaries of the weather.

It is a pocket-sized book so easily carried on the walks but I would recommend you also have the relevant Ordnance Survey map for the walk concerned so that you have a greater overview of the surrounding landscape.

These are certainly some classic walks and this book therefore, as we can once again get out to these areas, is one that I would highly recommend.

by John Burland