The Cotswold Way Chipping Campden to Bath
This month Rohantime caught up with Tricia & Bob Hayne, authors of the Cotswold Way Guide – a 102-mile (163km) National Trail that runs from Chipping Campden to Bath, following the beautiful Cotswold escarpment for much of its course. The trail leads through quintessentially English countryside with little villages of honey-coloured stone, from open farmland to the historic World Heritage City of Bath. Five town plans and fifty large-scale walking maps – at just under 1:20,000 – showing route times, places to stay, points of interest and much more. Itineraries for all walkers – whether walking the route in its entirety over seven to eight days or sampling the highlights on day walks and short breaks. Practical information for all budgets – camping, bunkhouses, hostels, B&Bs, pubs and hotels; Chipping Campden to Bath – where to stay, where to eat, what to see, plus detailed street plans. Comprehensive public transport information – for all access points on the Cotswold Way. Flora and fauna – four page full color flower guide, plus an illustrated section on local wildlife and Green hiking. In fact something for every one.
Tracia kindly answered some questions about their work, their guides and something that intreged me ‘minimum-impact walking’. The route guide and maps cover all aspect of the trail. Check out an except Sample route guide – Birdlip to Painswick
We are very excited to be able to offer one lucky winner on Rohantime a signed copy of the guide please see below
The Cotswold Way – “Worth watching out for” – John Cleare”
Q. How did you get into writing? I used to be editorial director of Bradt Travel Guides, and was in the enviable position of commissioning myself to write a guidebook. That one was to the Cayman Islands, which wasn’t a bad place to start! Aside from researching and writing about the islands, it was particularly helpful to switch roles and put myself in the shoes of an author.
Q. How do you actually go about writing a walking guide? Do you walk first then write up or take notes along the way etc? We – that’s my husband Bob and I – take notes and annotate the maps as we go, resorting to a dictaphone when it’s raining hard (soggy paper and biros don’t mix). Even doing this, it’s surprising how many questions arise later – but in the UK, we have the luxury of being able to go back and check on information at a later date.
Q. Why the Cotswold Way? My mum’s family hails from the Cotswolds, and both Bob and I went to school in the area. The opportunity to explore more widely was one we couldn’t turn down!
Q. It is a very comprehensive guide. How long did it take to complete? About three months in total. We spent eight days on the original walk, plus a couple extra to cover an alternative option to the national trail, the area around Cleeve Common where the route had been changed, and an access route from Cheltenham. Researching facilities in towns and villages added another few days. And time in front of the computer or on the phone gobbled the rest.
Q. I notice that you have a section in the book on ‘minimum impact walking’. Could you talk more about this please? Most walkers have been practising minimum-impact walking for years. The terminology might be new, but largely it comes down to common sense. After all, if you’re interested in the landscape around you, or you appreciate the wildlife, or you need to stock up on supplies at the village shop, then it makes sense to ensure that these things can be enjoyed by other walkers – and by future generations.
Q. What other guides have you written? I’ve co-written a guide to the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Bob and I updated Trailblazer’s ‘Offa’s Dyke Path’ in 2007. We’ve also helped to update several guides to southern African countries for Bradt.
Q. What would you like to write? One of the best things about writing guidebooks is that it opens doors – and can bring even the most unpromising of destinations to life. So I prefer to keep an open mind – and anyway, I like surprises!
Q. How important is having the right kit when you are researching on the trail? Essential. Being kitted out for the British weather means taking quite a lot of layers, so it makes sense for these to be light, waterproof and quick drying. Soggy paper might be an occupational hazard, but if you choose wisely you can largely avoid rain-sodden clothing. And good boots are a necessity.
Q. Have you ever used Rohan Clothing? Yes! Both my pairs of walking trousers are Rohan – though my Rohan Bags (male version because the women’s fit seemed designed for a 1950s Barbie) could be described as ‘vintage’!
Nearest Rohan Shops on The Cotswold Way: Rohan Bath at the start or finish of the trail. Rohan Bristol is 10 miles to the West. Rohan Stow on the Wold 9 Miles and Rohan Stratford upon Avon 12 miles from the trail
Competition now closed – thanks to everyone who entered