Happy New Year.
As I write this the long wet spell has just given way to a dry spell which should allow water levels to subside. Unfortunately this has left a legacy of mud which has led to hazardous slippery walking in places, not to mention extra time and effort in cleaning boots. Just how treacherous an innocuous- looking a stretch of mud can be, was evidenced by the fall that our Walks Secretary, Dave R, suffered on 12 January near the coast path above Swanage. Currently with his leg in plaster, Dave will be out of walking action while his broken ankle mends. So we share his frustration, miss his company and the encouragement and support that he gives fellow walkers and wish him a speedy recovery. His has been the only serious mishap that has happened since I joined Dorset Ramblers some 16 years ago. However, it is a timely reminder once again when we are enjoying the benefits and beauty of our wonderful countryside that we all must take care of ourselves and each other.
On the positive side, Dave has put together a magnificent programme for the coming months. He has built on your Committee’s reflections on the feedback we had from the questionnaires we launched at the AGM. You said you would like to see some variety in the days selected for walking whilst keeping to the tradition of Sunday walks. The programme sees 2 Saturday walks, the trial of a midweek walk (Thursday), the odd longer walk, and the encouragement of members to use Sunday Figure of 8 walks more flexibly if they don’t wish to do the whole day.
We hope this approach will also make us more attractive to the new members that we wish (and need to recruit). It was suggested at the AGM by one member that we could all play a part by each introducing one new member during the year. I hope that this has been one of your New Year Resolutions’