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Royal Borough 'Walks For All' leaflet in the works

Plans to create an online leaflet which displays the Royal Borough’s most accessible walks are progressing well, the council’s Local Access Forum heard this week.

Members of the forum, which took place on Monday evening, were told about the plans for ‘Walks For All’, a series of six walks across the Royal Borough that will be manageable for all residents.

The routes are a response to the difficulties many people with disabilities have accessing green spaces.

The six initial routes will be in Battlemead Common, The Green Way, Ockwells Park, Cock Marsh, along the Thames near Boulters Lock and along the Thames in Old Windsor.

Steve Gillions, who was involved in creating the routes, said: “The intention was to create a series of walks, initially six but with more to follow, and the end product would be a leaflet that we hope would go online that people can just print off and use as they wish.

“It's really to make people feel comfortable that they’re not biting off more than they can chew, that there’s someone telling them where to go and what’s there.”

The Walks For All leaflets, which are being worked on by the Accessibility Working Group, an offshoot of the forum, will include maps that are specially designed for people with accessibility issues.

Steve said: “The map is particularly important because we want to use a set of symbols that are particularly suited to access issues such as gradient, where there are benches, where there are facilities, and where people might expect difficulties or have something to overcome.”

Lisa Hughes, who was voted in as the vice-chair of the forum on the night, added: “When we talk about walks for all we really do mean walks for all, not just people with mobility or other impairments.

“It’s looking for routes that parents with young children or people who haven’t got out very much or are taking tentative steps to get to know the Royal Borough, these are entry points for people.

“I’m also considering using social media and setting up social media pages for some of the walks so that there can be more pictures added.

“If people are directed there they can add their own comments or photos so it becomes much more interactive.”

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