South Lincolnshire Walking Festival 2019

28 September to 27 October 2019

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Step forward to lead a walk in the second South Lincolnshire Walking Festival

Following a very successful festival in autumn 2015 Heritage Lincolnshire, a charitable trust based in Heckington, is urging organisations and businesses to volunteer to lead walks in their second South Lincolnshire Walking Festival.

The walking festival will take place between 24th September and 30th October this year and will feature free guided walks in North & South Kesteven, Boston and South Holland. There are already a number of walks lined up so far, led by organisations such as Curlydog Ltd, local Ramblers groups, Walking for Health groups, Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust, the RSPB and Lincolnshire Vikings Walking Club but more are needed to help attract visitors to the south of the county.

Beverley Gormley, Heritage Lincolnshire’s Cultural Events Officer, said “The South Lincolnshire Walking Festival is creating a real buzz in this part of the county for the second year! Our first festival last year attracted over 1400 walkers who discovered that North & South Kesteven, Boston and South Holland are jam packed with heritage and history. We want to help show off those hidden gems to local people and visitors while helping to boost the local economy for a second year and are asking groups, businesses and organisations to help us put this part of Lincolnshire firmly on the walking festival map by offering to lead a walk. Last year we were particularly pleased with the number of children who took part in our walks with their families.

South Lincolnshire has a varied landscape that has witnessed Bronze Age burials, Iron Age mints, roman forts, the Knights Templar, castles and abbeys but the festival isn’t only for history lovers! Whether you want to roam with Ramblers, have an adventure with your kids, get snapping on a photography foray or go on ‘walkies’ with your dog, there’s something for everyone. The walks will take place on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays so that those who work or want to involve the family don’t miss out. 2016 marks 25 years since we were registered as a charity and we really want the festival to go with a bang.”

Heritage Lincolnshire also organises the successful Lincolnshire Wolds Walking Festival in partnership with the Wolds Countryside Service and is keen to promote Lincolnshire’s heritage to walkers. If you or your organisation are interested in leading a walk, please get in touch by email at or phone 01529 461499 before 15th April 2016.

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Save the date!

SLWF save the date 2016

Yes it’s true! We’re back again this autumn with more fantastic walks in North Kesteven, South Kesteven, Boston and South Holland each Friday, Saturday and Sunday between 24th September and 30th October.

Our pilot festival in 2015 was a huge success attracting over 1400 walkers (and dogs!) of all ages on over 70 walks. If you want to keep up to date with what’s happening you can sign up for updates on the home page and if you want to lead a walk please drop us a line to – we’d love to hear from you!

In the meantime don’t forget our sister festival, the Lincolnshire Wolds Walking Festival that starts on 21st May.

“Launching from the pretty village of Donington-on-Bain we can promise 16 days of really good walking in and around the Lincolnshire Wolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, until our festival finale at Gunby Estate, Hall and Gardens National Trust property on 5 June.We’ve got 114 great walks in the pipeline for this year’s festival, ranging from energetic day-long rambles to gentle strolls, plus lots of activities to involve all the family. Our event is 12 years old this year, but we’ve still got new and interesting walks to offer, as well as some old favourites.

Access for Everyone is a key theme in 2016 and we’re delighted that, along with a dementia-friendly walk, some of our events will be especially accessible for people using mobility aids. Local company TerrainHopper will even be offering free tasters of their fabulous all-terrain mobility vehicles.

Lincolnshire’s long-distance footpath, the Viking Way, reaches its 40th anniversary in 2016 and we’ll be celebrating with over 30 walks during the festival. If you like a real challenge then why not sign up to take part in the Lincs Wolds Way, a 75-mile circular walk around the Wolds, in six day-long linear sections. We provide the transport so you can do the walking!

There are plenty of evening events so you can fit in a walk after the day-job, and two Night Walks, back after popular demand in 2015. For families why not plan to join Louth District Scouts and experience Orienteering, or visit Snipe Dales Country Park for a family day with Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust. The festival brochure will be available to download or pick up from early March.”


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Join Jerry Green Dog Rescue for ‘walkies’ this Sunday!

jerrygreendogslogoBring your pooch for a fantastic autumnal walk in the woods with staff (and four-legged friends) from Jerry Green Dog Rescue’s South Lincolnshire centre on Sunday 25th October at 11am.

The 3 mile woodland walk will start from the Westgate Wood car park at Five House Lane, Wyberton near Boston PE21 7JA.

Westgate Wood is one of The Woodland Trust’s ‘Woods on Your Doorstep’ woodlands, created to commemorate the Millennium and was planted with ash, oak, alder, downy birch and willows. The walk will follow a meandering, wheelchair and pushchair friendly path through grassy glades with seating areas and rest spots. It’s very dog-friendly and has a charming cafe at the entrance called the Fisherman’s Rest. Donations to Jerry Green Dog Rescue would be very welcome.

Jerry Green Dog Rescue’s South Lincolnshire centre opened in 1997 and Lynne Vincent and her team are committed to caring for and rehoming dogs in the South Lincolnshire area. The Rescue Centre is located within easy reach of all the major towns of the area at the junction of the A16 and A17. If you want more details about the walk or the centre please contact walk leader Jo Hickson on 01205 260546.

Go to to find about more about rehoming a dog.

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Dare you enter the Terrifying Templar Tower for our finale?

HALLOWEEN 2015 posterIgnore the spooks, bats, spiders and Templar ghost stories to explore, discover, create and have fun while Temple Bruer Tower holds you in its spell. Maybe it will decide to keep you!

As part of the fun you can join in with our ‘Templars on the Heath’ 2.5 mile walk with archaeologist Gary Taylor and enjoy a special piece of cake to celebrate the end of the festival. The walk leaves from the tower at 2pm.

Don’t have ‘knight’mares!

Free entry, Temple Bruer Tower, Temple Lane, Welbourn, Sleaford LN5 0DG

31st October 11am-4pm

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One week to go!

The countdown has begun!

Join us for the first of our free guided walks on Friday 25th September followed by our official family launch event on Saturday 26th September. The launch will take place at Willow Tree Fen nature reserve just off Counter Drain Drove between Spalding and Bourne.

Bring the whole family for short walks with Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust’s experts and channel your inner Bear Grylls with den building. There’ll also be pond dipping, owl pellet dissection, badge making and crafts.

If that’s not enough, stick around until 6pm for the Bat and Moth Walk. See you there!

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Will you be taking the Spires and Steeples Challenge?

Guest blog by Donna Sutton, Spires and Steeples Challenge Organiser:

The Spires & Steeples Challenge is a successful charity run/walk organised by 1Life; following the public footpaths and bridleways along the Spires and Steeples Arts & Heritage Trail. The trail that runs from Lincoln Cathedral to St Denys’ Church, Sleaford, brings together the rich history, heritage and local stories of the area. It has many beautiful artworks, churches, interesting landscapes and picturesque skies. The name refers to the Spires of the churches being the landmarks to which visitors make their way and to the rural sport of Steeple chasing. It is also recognition of the important part they have played in the lives of these communities as well as how they are a reflection of the times, families and cultures that created, altered and rebuilt them.

Since the first event back in 2008, participants have challenged themselves to complete the route whilst taking in the beautiful artworks, church architecture and the variety that is the Lincolnshire villages and countryside. There is the option to walk or run the full 26 miles, or walk and run half the route; 13 miles from Metheringham to Sleaford. It has fast become a firm favourite for many, and due to its unique nature attracts participants from all over the country so see what’s on offer in Lincolnshire.

We are very excited to be featuring in the South Lincolnshire Walking Festival this year; it is our 8th challenge and to be able to tie this into such a fantastic pilot festival is great. We have some fantastic countryside and heritage on our doorstep, so to showcase the Spires and Steeples Arts & Heritage Trail along with so many other great walking opportunities was an opportunity not to be missed.

For more information about the Spires and Steeples Challenge, please contact Donna Sutton on 01522 870273 or email

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North Kesteven Social Strollers Step Up to the Mark!

Continuing our guest blogs is 1Life’s Carly Togher who co-ordinates health walks in North Kesteven:

The North Kesteven Social Strollers Health Walk scheme operates nk-social-strollerswithin the North Kesteven District, offering 15 free and accessible health walks to local communities. All walks are led by our team of dedicated volunteer walk leaders; some of which are leading walks in this year’s festival!

We are very excited to be involved in the upcoming South Lincolnshire Walking Festival and are looking forward to sharing some of our fantastic walking routes with you. Regular Whisby volunteer walk leader, Brian Smith will be leading a walk at Whisby Natural World Centre on Friday 25th September. The walk includes circular routes with varying lengths, so all abilities are catered for. Walkers are encouraged to enjoy lunch at the Boardwalk Café at the Natural World Centre after completing the walk.

Nick Grimshaw, who leads multiple walks for the NK Social Strollers, is joining up his regular health walking routes to create an enjoyable 7 + miles walk around Branston and Heighington villages on Saturday 3rd October. There is no charge to this walk; however Nick is encouraging walkers to make a charitable donated to Macmillan Cancer Support.

Finally on Saturday 17th October, Sleaford health walk leader Shirley Thompson is leading a walk westwards along the River Slea towards its source. The route will then explore the allotments and pass through the cemetery before returning back along the River Slea. The walk will discuss the importance of the Sleaford Navigation and the water mills to the development of Sleaford.

If you would like more information on our regular health walks timetable please contact Carly Togher on: 01522 870272 or alternatively e-mail:

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Our official launch event at Willow Tree Fen

The Official #SLWF Launch!Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust logo

Saturday 26th September 2015 10:00 – 18:00. Willow Tree Fen Nature Reserve, off Counter Drain Drove, Spalding, Lincolnshire PE11 3JH. Between Bourne and Spalding, south of the River Glen, the entrance is over a small bridge opposite Bank House Farm on Counter Drain Drove between Pode Hole and Tongue End.

Although the festival starts the day before on the 25th, we’re delighted to be holding our official launch at Willow Tree Fen Nature Reserve courtesy of Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust.

Willow Tree Fen is the largest area of wild fenland in Lincolnshire and over the last five years has undergone a transformation from arable land where beans and cereal were grown to a more traditional landscape of shallow meres, seasonally flooded pastures, hay meadows and reedbeds where wildlife now thrives. In January 2010, over 120 visitors helped Heritage Lincolnshire carry out a geophysical survey, field-walk the site, auger test deposits and dig test pits. Four trenches were dug crossing the site of a Roman drainage ditch. The fieldwalking yielded two new Iron Age/Roman saltmaking sites and a selection of Roman domestic pottery. You’ll also have the chance to find out what’s happening in the local area, so make a day of it!

The launch event is perfect for the whole family and will include several guided walks around the site (including a bat walk at 18:00!), crafts, den building, mini beast hunts, Nature Detectives, pond dipping and dissection of owl pellets

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Countdown to the Lincolnshire Wolds Walking Festival has begun!

Lincolnshire Wolds Walking Festival Walkers

There are hills in Lincolnshire!

Are you desperate to get out walking? Well, the good news is that you don’t have to wait until September! Our sister festival, the Lincolnshire Wolds Walking Festival is just around the corner.


This year there are 107 events taking place during the 16 day festival, including lots of good walking, plenty of family-friendly fun sessions and even some group bike rides for anyone who fancies a bit more speed. To request a copy of the  brochure please send us your postal address details via the festival’s Contact us page.

For corrections and amendments to the brochure, please visit

Win a fantastic Walking Weekend for two!
Everyone who receives one of the walking festival brochures can enter, just send in the coupon on page 53. Click here for further information, terms and conditions.


The festival launches at a Welton le Wold Quarry, near the lovely market town of Louth, on Saturday 16 May (10am – 4pm). This great day out in the Lincolnshire landscape will offer a great programme of walks and activities where you can learn more about this important Special Site of Scientific Interest. This site is geologically important to the story of how Lincolnshire experienced the last Ice Age, with remains of straight-tusked elephant, deer and bison being found here, together with Stone Age flint tools.

Children will enjoy pond-dipping in a Lincolnshire Chalk Stream, digging in an archaeological sand pit, and coming face-to-face with a Stone Age Man! A pre-history expert will be demonstrating Stone Age flint-napping techniques, dressed exactly as our ancestors might have looked thousands of years ago.

Refreshments and toilets will be available but do come dressed for the weather. Please note that only registered Assistance Dogs are allowed on this site, no other dogs are allowed.

Thank you to the landowners, Mr & Mrs Brook for allowing public access for this event.

The Festival closes with the highly-popular Finale event, this year taking place at Flintwood Farm near the pretty village of Belchford on Sunday 31 May. A lively programme of walks will get everyone out and about in this archetypal part of the Lincolnshire Wolds which shows just why we are the East Midlands’ only Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Refreshments will be provided courtesy of the Horncastle & District Lions Club and every participant is invited to celebrate the conclusion of the festival with a piece of free Festival Cake!

Warm thanks to Mr & Mrs Tuxworth at Flintwood Farm.


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Londonthorpe Wood, Grantham – Guest Blog by Christina Joachim of the Woodland Trust

Discover Londonthorpe – Woodland Creation to Mature Wood.

Londonthorpe is just over 20 years old and already looks and feels like fully mature woodland. It’s an attractive wood with a range of habitats including an area of mature old woodland planted to commemorate the Crimean War of the 1850’s. It’s divided into three separate areas by roads but each area has its own look and feel. Once part of the Belton House estate owned by the Brownlow family, the site was planted to compliment the parkland and woodland landscape and provides a stunning view over Grantham and the surrounding areas.

Londonthorpe Wood

Since the first tree was planted in 1993, Londonthorpe Wood has developed into a haven for wildlife and people alike. Now with a ‘proper woodland’ feel to it, the mix of open space, high forest, ponds, areas of scrub and woodland rides makes a visit to the wood an interesting and varied experience, with lots to discover. This variety of habitats also provides homes for an abundance of wildlife, from grass snakes to woodpeckers and lots in between.

The broadleaf mix includes ash, oak, birch, field maple, rowan and sweet chestnut, with a great deal of natural regeneration which is nicely blurring the distinction between planted and open areas. The many old veteran trees and hedgerows add greatly to the interest and enhance the impression that this site has evolved over time. In fact, the nine acres of mature woodland bordering the site contain plants indicative of ancient woodland such as cuckoo pint, dog’s mercury, enchanter’s nightshade and wood anemone, which are now spreading out into the newer planted areas. The resultant mix of diverse habitats, open space and interesting features makes a visit to this woodland a delight at any time of the year.

Christina Joachim Regional Communications and Engagement Officer