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Take one of the most beautiful times of the year, and the picturesque backdrop of the undulating Herefordshire countryside.
Combine the two and you have the St Michael’s Hospice Big Spring Walk.
Whether you’re looking for a challenging woodland walk or a more leisurely stroll beside the River Wye, there is a walk for you, your friends and family, and maybe even your dog.
Choose between 2K, 5K, 11K and 16K routes starting and finishing at Fownhope Recreation Ground.
This year, the 11k and part of the 16k will be reversed to give walkers familiar with the routes a new perspective.
All routes will be fully signposted, and our team of marshals will be positioned along the paths ready to help you on your way.
And when you return, grab a bite to eat and enjoy a performance from the ever-popular Paws for Thought dog display team.
This walk follows a flat route around local fields with picturesque views of the River Wye. The short distance and easy terrain make the 2K walk perfect for younger children.
Important: No dogs are allowed on the 2K walk but are welcome on leads on 5K, 11K and 16K.
2K walk starts at 11.30am
This walk climbs onto a hilltop rewarding walkers with stunning views over South Herefordshire. Descending back towards Fownhope the walk follows the banks of the River Wye back to the finish line in time to enjoy a few refreshments.
Dogs on leads welcome on the 5K walk
5K walk starts at 11am
This walk leaves Fownhope on a path loved by locals, and takes walkers through beautiful countryside as the route climbs into Haugh Wood. Descending along parts of the famous Butterfly Trail, walkers will have the chance to catch their breath and take on refreshments at the Moon Inn, Mordiford. The return journey follows wooded and open paths through West Wood and Cherry Hill back to the Recreation Ground for well-deserved refreshments.
Dog on leads welcome on the 11K walk
(PLEASE NOTE: The 11K walk has several climbs and descents. The path may be very muddy in places, so walking boots and long trousers are a must. You will need to negotiate several stiles, all of which have gaps underneath that medium sized dogs should be able to pass through. While the majority of the paths are through woodland or along enclosed tracks, you will pass through some pastures which may be holding sheep and/or cattle. Approximate time 3 hours.)
11K walk starts at 9.30am
This walk combines the 5K river walk and loops back onto the 11K Haugh Wood walk. Refreshments available at the Moon Inn at Mordiford and at the finish at the Recreation Ground.
Dogs on leads welcome on the 16K walk
(PLEASE NOTE: Like the 11K, the 16K walk has several climbs and descents. The path may be very muddy in places, so walking boots and long trousers are a must. You will need to negotiate several stiles, all of which have gaps underneath that medium sized dogs should be able to pass through. While the majority of the paths are through woodland or along enclosed tracks, you will =pass through some pastures which may be holding sheep and/or cattle. Approximate time 4.5hours.)
16K walk starts at 9am
Toilets are available at the Recreation Ground and the Moon Inn at Mordiford. Refreshments (including tea, coffee, hot and cold food) will be available for purchase at the Recreation Ground before and after the walks.
Fownhope Recreation Ground (additional parking at Wye Leisue)
Fownhope Recreation Ground
The Start and Finish of each event is at the Fownhope Recreation Ground, Caplor Lane, HR1 4PJ.
16K walkers: registration between 8.30am and 8.55am, walk starts at 9.00am
11K walkers: registration between 9.00am and 9.25am, walk starts at 9.30am
5K walkers: registration between 10.00am and 10.55am, walk starts at 11.00am
2K walkers: registration between 10.00am and 11.25am, walk starts at 11.30am
Parking is available on the Recreation Ground field, please follow the car park signage.
The registration area will be next to the Fownhope Pavilion on the Recreation Ground. You need to register your attendance and collect your Big Spring Walk wristband. We will also give you a map and a much-deserved bar of chocolate to help you along your way.
On your wristband there is our on-call mobile number. If you get into any difficulty on the walk, please contact us immediately. When crossing a major road, marshalls will be present to assist your crossing. Please be vigilant when crossing roads.
The walks will take you next to the river: please ensure you keep a minimum distance of 2m from the bank and ensure all children and dogs are supervised.
Please bring enough water to get you and your party around the walk: you will have the option to buy water on the day if required. This is especially important in hot weather.
Ensure you have appropriate footwear to meet the requirements of mixed terrain. You will also need to consider the weather when selecting attire.
Please keep all dogs on leads for the duration of the walk and while on the Recreation Ground. Non-compliance will not be tolerated. The playing fields are used by numerous youth groups so please clear up after your dog.
Refreshments and Toilets
Refreshments are available throughout the day next to the Pavilion. We will be serving bacon rolls throughout the day. We will have a vegetarian option too.
Tea, coffee and soft drinks will be available from the catering area as well as Mr Whippy style ice cream.
There are toilets available in the Pavilion building on the Recreation Ground and at The Moon Inn, Mordiford.
We are pleased to have Paws For Thought Dog Display Team entertaining us from 12.30pm so please join us to watch their spectacular display post walk.
We’ve asked that everyone try and raise £15 in sponsorship to support the free services the Hospice provides to the community. This means asking five people for £3 via a paper sponsorship form or setting up a Just Giving account.
£15 to the Hospice provides a patient with a therapy session to help relieve stress and anxiety. By increasing your sponsorship total to £30, you could pay for a patient to receive a full pain control assessment; by raising £50 you can pay for two sessions for a patient’s family to receive specialist support from our counselling team.
If you have already collected cash sponsorship, you can drop this off with the registration team on the day.
90% of the £5.2milion needed to fund the Hospice annually comes from the community – your help with this, as always, is greatly appreciated.
Need more help?
If you have any further questions please let us know:
Call 01432 851 000
Thank you to everyone who has supported this event, all of our marshalls and volunteers, Hampton Hire, Paws For Though Dog Display Team and the Fownhope Recreation Field Association.
St Michael’s Hospice provides all its care free of charge to patients, their families and carers.
This care is made possible by supporters taking part in fundraising events like this abseil, shopping at our retail outlets, playing the Hospice Lottery, making charitable donations and leaving gifts in their wills.
To raise money for your Hospice and help us continue to care, please download the sponsor form opposite, or set up a JustGiving page (we’ll soon have the link on this website), then ask your friends, family and work colleagues to sponsor you.