This award recognises a volunteer or group of volunteers who have been a leading voice on walking matters. They may help to protect, maintain or keep an eye on every single path in their area. It highlights a real walking hero who has achieved something above and beyond to make sure the places we love to walk are protected, expanded, and maintained for future generations.
Brian Micklam has been the West Wiltshire Ramblers Group footpath secretary since 2011. During his time in this role he has worked enthusiastically, tenaciously and creatively to protect and improve our local Rights of Way. Brian is regularly involved in several projects, working with Rights of Way Officers, Community Area Boards, the Canal and Rivers Trust, Parish Councils, landowners, Wessex Water Board.
Brian supports local initiatives involved in protecting and reinstating local footpaths, attends Ramblers’ Liaison meetings, organises way marking and assists the Council. Many requests for help and advice on footpath issues come his way from the general public too because he is known as a person who cares and gets things done.
With Brian’s valuable support, two local action groups successfully campaigned for popular paths to be registered on the Definitive Map meaning everyone can now enjoy them. As well as this work Brian is also a stalwart member of our Footpath Working Party which meets every Tuesday clearing and maintaining paths, erecting kissing gates, repairing bridges and paths.
Brian is someone who has, and still is, making an outstanding contribution to the improvement of our walking environment and access to the countryside.
Peter has been a Ramblers local footpath secretary for many years. He looks after four parishes along the coast of Sussex, all subject to development pressures and so requiring constant attention.
Not content with concern for current issues, Peter is a key Ramblers member of Don’t Lose Your Way - Sussex, the Ramblers project to get historic rights of way recognised before the cut off in 2026 and is searching out various lost ways.
Peter’s greatest asset is his tenacity, which was most apparent in the successful forty-four year campaign to reopen a footpath along the coast at Telscombe that was closed by the Water Board in 1974 for the construction of a pumping station. Peter kept Footpath Telscombe 12A in our conscience for many years, constantly lobbying East Sussex County Council and Southern Water about the illegally obstructed path, and also reminding Ramblers that campaigning must continue.
Peter also cares for three other parishes, and in both Newhaven and Peacehaven where he has saved several paths from closure or unwarranted diversions.
Voting has closed for the Volunteer Awards 2019, we will be announcing the winner in April.
Find out about the other categories.