Walk Leadership Sounding Board

Our Scottish walk leadership sounding board is made up of Ramblers Scotland members with education or training experience, as well as external industry experts. 

The group met for the first time in October 2016 and continue to meet in various locations around Scotland 3-4 times a year, with ongoing consultation between meetings. 

Their role is to help shape the developing walk leader training framework and guide the direction of the project as a whole. 

We are looking for 2-3 more members to supplement the membership of this group, especially women. If you're interested in getting involved, please contact project officer Katy Robinson for more information about the role.

Current sounding board members:

Alan Watt – Glasgow Ramblers


As a member of the Glasgow Group, I lead quite a few walks every year, have developed and continue to maintain our group’s website, and currently help with the walks programme.

Most of my professional career was in education, working in a university and latterly working with further and higher education as an HM Inspector. My voluntary work has included various mentoring activities, membership of the board of a charity and a spell on the Children's Panel. 

I was very pleased to hear about the Scottish Walk Leaders Project. Walk leaders play an absolutely key role in Ramblers and, as an organisation, we must value them and ensure that they are supported as well as possible. I hope to contribute to this support as best I can by offering my own opinions while keeping an open mind about the views of others.

Andy Malby – Edinburgh Young Walkers

Andy Malby SCEC Member

I have been a member of Ramblers since 2012, although have always enjoyed walking and an outdoor lifestyle.

I am an active member of Edinburgh Young Walkers (EYW), leading all grades of walks in summer and winter.

I have been treasurer of EYW and am now Chair person. In 2015 I joined the Executive Committee of Ramblers Scotland and am currently Vice Convener.

Andrew Gilbert – Lochaber and Lorn Ramblers

I have a lifetime’s experience of exploring the outdoors, and have been hillwalking and mountaineering from my teenage years. I have a sound knowledge and experience of hills in all seasons, gained over 50 years.

Retiring from the Fire Service, I settled in the Highlands and became a founder member of Lochaber and Lorn Ramblers Group. I have been a walk leader since then, leading walks at all levels in both winter and summer.

I contribute frequently to the walks programme and have served a period as walks coordinator, and on the group and area committees.

Nigel Williams – Head of Training, Glenmore Lodge


Nigel has worked in the outdoor sector for most of his working life. During a services career he worked in two of the joint services mountain training centres. After leaving the services in 1993 he worked for Fife Council as an outdoor instructor then in a wider role as outdoor education co-ordinator for the council. For the past 19 years he has been the Head of Training at Glenmore Lodge. 

He has been involved with the Mountain Leadership schemes and attended Mountain Training Scotland board meetings since 1990, and MTUK board meetings 1999 – 2014. More recently Nigel has been on the Cairngorm National Park Local Outdoor Access Forum. 

Nigel holds the Mountain Instructors Certificate, the International Mountain Leader Award and is a level 3 Orienteering coach. He is also involved with the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme and the National Navigation Award Scheme. 

Alan Smith - Outdoor Education Officer, East Dunbartonshire Council and SAPOE member
In his work for the council, Alan is responsible for:

  • Supporting schools in the planning and delivery of Outdoor Learning
  • Offering CPD opportunities to staff and volunteers within the authority to aid Outdoor Learning
  • Managing policy for offsite visits and excursions