Pathways Fund supports Cotswold Way project

£7,500 donated to improve the Cotswold Way

The Cotswold Way is a 102-mile long National Trail which runs from Chipping Campden to Bath through the Cotswold Hills. One of these hills is Leckhampton Hill – an area of rich grassland which is designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). In early 2021, The Cotswold Way Association (CWA) – a charity that keeps a check on the upkeep of The Cotswold Way – identified a section of path around some gates that was in urgent need of repair and improvement.

One of the key objectives for the HF Holidays Pathways Fund is the preservation and improvement of the amenities and safety of the environment in which HF Holidays’ walks take place. This is achieved by allocating grants, and other funding, to individuals, organisations or groups for specific projects which cannot be readily funded from other sources. Because of the proximity of Harrington House in Bourton-on-the-Water and the fact that we regularly run guided and self-guided walking holidays in the Cotswolds, this was deemed a project suiatble for support.

HF Holidays Pathways Fund

The Pathways Fund
In a nutshell

Our Pathways Fund has, for many years, provided assisted holidays to those who could not otherwise afford one. In addition, since 1998, the fund has helped to protect and improve the countryside where HF Holidays’ guests walk. This is achieved through generous donations from HF Holidays’ members and guests.
Find out more about the HF Pathways Fund

The Trail before work was carried out

The gate had rough, stony ground either side of it, which made it particularly difficult for outdoor mobility scooters and pushchairs to travel over. A number of walkers had suffered minor injuries as a result of the rough terrain. Nearby there is a 3km disabled mobility route along the Cotswold Way escarpment. Some path users were bypassing the rough section of path by passing through the SSSI and thus causing damage to this sensitive area.

The Cotswold Way regeneration project
The Cotswold Way regeneration project
The Cotswold Way regeneration project

Work in progress

A donation of £7,500 was made from the HF Holidays Pathways Fund to smooth and grade a two-metre-wide section of path around the gates. The aim of the work was to allow access for all types of user and to deter the detours being made across the SSSI which were causing damage to it. The path improvements involved laying some 150 tonnes of limestone dust and Cotswold stone.

The Cotswold Way regeneration project
The Cotswold Way regeneration project
The Cotswold Way regeneration project

Work completed

In October 2021 the work was completed, and HF Holidays leaders Sue Maizonnier, Janet Duffin and Tony Duffin met with representatives from the project to see the finished path and installed HF Holidays plaque.

Sue Maizonnier said: “I am delighted that the HF Pathways Fund has helped make a section of the Cotswold Way safer to walk and accessible to all, including users of all terrain mobility buggies. It was heart-warming to see how much easier access now is along this stretch.”

The Cotswold Way regeneration project
The Cotswold Way regeneration project
The Cotswold Way regeneration project

The path improvements coincided with the Cotswold Way celebrating its 50th Anniversary; a fitting present for the path to receive!

HF Holidays guests regularly walk sections of the Cotswold Way on our Guided Walking and Self-Guided holidays – and some even walk the entire length on our Cotswold Way Guided Trail. The trail can be walked in all seasons. However, if you want to enjoy clear views from the Cotswold escarpment, then crisp winter days, autumn and spring may be the best time to visit. Late spring and early summer though are great times to see the grasslands in all their glory, while the beech woodlands are at their best in spring and autumn.

Guided Walking Trail Holidays with HF

The Cotswold Way Guided Walking Trail Holiday

The Cotswold Way
Guided Walking Trail Holiday

Renowned for its sheer diversity, the Cotswold Way incorporates some of England’s prettiest villages and passes historic sites such as the World Heritage City of Bath, the Neolithic burial chamber at Belas Knap, and many churches and historic houses. One minute you will be in wildflower meadows, the next shaded beech woodlands. No two days are the same!
Tackle the Cotswold Way