“Peddars Way, A Walk with Chalk” is an illustrated book by landscape artist and long time Norfolk resident, Tor Falcon. Tor became intrigued by the Peddars Way described by some as Britain’s loneliest national walking trail. It follows a Roman Road for almost 50 miles from Thetford in the Breckland to Holme-next-the Sea. So taken with walking and drawing, Tor has gone on to follow and draw every river in Norfolk, and describes how during lockdown she’s also been chasing the moon. Between pandemic lockdowns Andrew Stuck caught up with Tor.19’11” 9.0MB
Writer and academic Kerri Andrews has recently written “Wanderers: A History of Women Walking” that challenges the male-dominated history of walking. Drawing on her own experience of hill walking and through research, she has written a compelling book that includes intriguing stories about women walkers since the early 18th century. She focused on women writers who reflected on what walking meant to them, many of whom have been overlooked or ignored.
Unlike the majority of Talking Walking interviews that are undertaken out and about on foot, the COVID pandemic has meant that this interview had to be recorded over the Internet. The interview opens with Andrew Stuck asking Kerri about her own passion for walking and how it began. 24’33” 11.5MB
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Photo: Beinn a’Bheithir near Ballachulish Credit: Ewan Tait
Paul Kelly is a researcher and lecturer in physical activity at Edinburgh University. Working with Paths for All, the Scottish charity promoting walking and cycling, he has been investigating the measures that facilitate or obstruct people walking more. Recently he has been reviewing, from a public health standpoint, the introduction of a blanket 20mph restriction on motorists across Edinburgh, comparing it with other cities. We are on a brisk walk early in February in Princes Gardens in Edinburgh, seeking quiet spaces away from the nearby railway, commuter traffic and a contractor mowing the lawns. 23’41” 11.1MB
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Listen to Paul Kelly’s 20×20 Vision for walking
Peter Fiennes, former publisher of Time Out Travel Guides, has turned his hand to writing books. Reviewers and book readers have loved his engaging and humorous prose, so it was a pleasure for Andrew Stuck to record an interview with him to talk about the travel writers that he most admires, a dozen of whom he has ‘accompanied’ in his latest bestselling book: “Footnotes: A Journey Round Britain in the Company of Great Writers”, the paperback of which will publish in August 2020 .Recorded on Clapham Common, in south London on a windy February day in 2020, pre-pandemic lockdown, when frequent jet planes and a helicopter interrupted the recording. 19’57” 9.3MB
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Children’s book illustrator and comic book artist, Lizzy Stewart, when drawing herself, draws herself walking – striding confidently across the urban scene. Her latest book, called “Walking Distance” is a personal account of the way she sees her life out and about on foot – she argues that walking is the ‘clearest way to participate in life’. Her work touches on themes of how women are observed in the city, both in reality and on film, as well as revealing insights into her creative process and her own ways of working. Recorded in and around the gardens surrounding the Horniman Museum in south east London on a February day in 2020. 22’08” 10.4MB
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Walking for 5 months and covering 2,000 miles across Europe from London to Jerusalem, the Just Walk marked the centenary of the Balfour Declaration in which the British Government announced their support for a “national home for the Jewish people” in Palestine. In this episode Andrew Stuck catches up with Justin Butcher, who conceived and led it, who describes the Just Walk as a ‘pilgrimage of penance’ and a ‘march of solidarity’. Crossing the Alps by the St Bernard Pass to north western Italy was rivaled in its beauty by the Albanian countryside. Accompanied by groups of walkers of different faiths and nationalities, a core group walked the whole distance, meeting refugees making journeys in the opposite direction, and being welcomed as celebrities by Palestinians. It is an extraordinary undertaking, chronicled by Justin in his best selling book entitled “Walking to Jerusalem”. The interview took place on a cold winter morning on the Parkland Trail, from Finsbury Park to Highgate Woods in London. 22’38” 10.6MB Feature image credit: Eleanor Butcher
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In 2020-21 Justin Butcher will be touring his critically acclaimed stage show, which premiered at Dublin Theatre Festival 2017, more details here.
Watch the 4-minute film of Just Walk to Jerusalem
Download the Walking to Jerusalem 2020-21 tour guide here
Ella Parry-Davies, a post-doctoral researcher at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, has been facilitating homemakersounds.org, a collection of soundwalks made with Filipina domestic and care workers employed “behind closed doors” in the Lebanon and the UK. In this interview, the ambiguity, complexity and unfairness of government immigration policy is discussed, as well as how recording and co-editing soundwalks develops an intimacy rarely found in ethnographic research. 21’12” 9.9MB
Recorded in February 2020 on a walk around residential streets in Swiss Cottage, London. Published to coincide with International Women’s Day 8 March 2020
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Saturday 19 June 2021 Join Ella for “Home Makers: go for a walk with sounds made by migrant domestic workers” – read more about this forthcoming event.
Jack Cornish is a programme manager for the “Don’t Lose Your Way” campaign at Ramblers, the UK charity promoting walking and defending rights of way. That’s the ‘day job’, but there is much more walking in Jack than just from 9 to 5. He has walked the entire length of the British Isles and is walking every street in London. The interview opens with Andrew Stuck asking Jack what “Don’t Lose Your Way” is all about and what his role entails. 22’06″ 10.4MBY
Since the recording was made, Jack has taken on a new role at Ramblers as Head of Paths.
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If you are ever going to be caught out in inclement weather on the mountains or hills of northern England, having met Mark Reid, founder of Team Walking, Andrew Stuck can think of no other person he would rather have as his guide. Mark’s passion for the outdoors is only outshone by his desire to share it with others. He has written many guide books, led countless walks and facilitated workshops in the hills, and has notched up mountain leadership and training qualifications by the score. In this interview, we talk about creative thinking as Andrew has just joined one of Mark’s regular, seasonal ‘netwalking’ events with local businessmen and women in the Yorkshire Dales. However, the interview opens with Mark describing a recent philosophy walk that he co-devised with community philosopher, Graeme Tiffany, revealing how walking with others can take you in to deeper thoughts. 22’15” 10.4MB
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On a visit to LISTEN: A Season of Sound Art taking place in Frome in Somerset, in the summer of 2019, Andrew Stuck participates in an immersive geo-located audio piece called ‘Walking Memories’. The piece has been composed by Phill Phelps and Ralph Hoyte, two of three partners who make up creative team Satsymph, who had been invited to use hours of recorded interviews from a Frome oral history group to create ‘Walking Memories’. Ralph and Phill, with their colleague Marc Yeats, have been making located media since 2004. Their latest work in Frome uses a hugely modified platform they call Satsymph QR with which they compose ‘spatial audio’ as Ralph describes it. For the interview, Andrew, Ralph and Phill are in a car park in Frome, a ‘sound pool’ within ‘Walking Memories’. The interview opens Andrew asking them both to explain a sound pool, and it is Phill’s voice that you hear answer him first. 19’19” 9.0MB
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Helen Ottaway is a musician and composer, and Frome resident for 22 years, who has been invited to curate LISTEN: A Season of Sound Art taking place in Frome from the 20 July until Sound Walk Sunday on the 1 September, 2019. In this episode, interviewed midway through the LISTEN, Helen explains how it came to fruition, its breadth of events taking place, and how she particularly wanted to include a listening walk and a geo-located sound walk. Helen herself, has been involved in creating sound art outdoors and is keen to include more walking in her future work.
Listen: A Season of Sound Art runs until Sunday 1 September – check the programme of events here
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Photo credit: Frances Ottaway
In this extended episode, published to coincide with the Festival celebrating London becoming a National Park City, Andrew Stuck talks to Dan Raven-Ellison, the campaigner behind the initiative. Dan is far more than just a ‘one trick pony’ having spent a lifetime seeking ways of getting people, young and old outdoors into nature. He has also been exploring new ways of making it easier for people to understand the scale of increasing urbanisation and its impact on the natural world of which we are all part. A self-styled, ‘guerrilla geographer’, the conversation begins with Dan explaining what that means. 34’41” 16.3MB
Recorded in April 2019 in Walpole Park, Ealing in West London on a windy day in which the recording had to be stopped as planes passed overhead.
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