Help Maintain Footpaths

Big Path Watch Logo
Big Path Watch Logo

The Ramblers – an organisation dedicated to public access of the countryside – have launched their most ambitious campaign ever, ‘Big Pathwatch’ (England and Wales only).

The aim of the campaign is to encourage walkers to record the condition of footpaths using a mobile app. The app enables walkers to report obstructions or difficulties encountered on the paths such as fallen trees, water-logged sections, broken styles, etc. Walkers can upload a picture of the problem using the app. Also pictures showing the positive features of the path such as good views or items of interest can be uploaded too. Experiences can be shared on Facebook or Twitter.

The app enables walkers to choose a 1km square grid from an Ordnance Survey Explorer map in which they will explore and report upon all the footpaths in that square. There is detailed information in the FAQ pages

If you are not already registered you will need to register with the Ramblers in order to take part.

If you are registered you can go straight to the Big Pathwatch ‘Get Involved’ page.

The Big Pathwatch app can be downloaded from the Apple AppStore or from Google play.

Fungi Forage in Surrey

Plate of wild fungi
Plate of wild fungi

Last Sunday I joined Andy Overall of to forage for wild Mushrooms. Andy organises various fungi focused events such as foraging walks, workshops, dinners, etc. Needless to say his knowledge is extensive.

As a child we used to visit relatives in Germany and uncle Rudi would take us into the forest to gather wild mushrooms. I was fascinated by the fungi we gathered – red, blue, green, yellow, purple – all sorts of things I would have considered as inedible or poisonous.

Andy’s trip did not disappoint and he took us to woodland rich in edible fungi. I came home with some Bay Boletes, Yellow Russulas, Chicken-in-the-Woods, Tawny Grizettes  and Polyporus Tuberaster found growing on a birch branch.

Cooking the mushrooms is also an art. The Grizettes must be well cooked otherwise they are poisonous. Many are more delicate than our standard supermarket mushrooms so must be lightly cooked. Those with spongy textures are good for marinating and soaking up a tasty stock.