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We like watching the Coast programme in our house. It is a well presented, informative and interesting programme. The skilled camerawork is one of the most notable things about the show - we especially love the wide-angled shots of the British coastline from the air. These make you want to go and explore the places the team visit for yourself. The BBC book 'Coast The Walks' builds on the wanderlust the programme stirs, encouraging you to explore more of our coastline for yourself.
The book details 54 walks dotted around our coast from Tresco to Stromness; Achill Island to Great Yarmouth. The walks are all shown on the map of Great Britain at the front of the book so you can choose your area of interest. The walks are divided up into Easy (1.5 miles to 6 miles), Medium (2 miles to 8.5 miles) and Hard (4 miles to 12 miles). The difficulty rating not only refers to distance it also takes account of the terrain which the walks cross. There are also useful symbols at the side of the walk description to indicate whether this is a town or country walk. The walks are rated for their accessibility (on foot/buggy users/ wheelchair users) and an approximate length of time to complete the walk is given.
In order to show you how useful and informative this book is, I will give you the potted example of Rotherhithe: A Thames tour. The symbols tell you that this walk is a town walk, 3 miles long, access on foot, for buggy's and wheelchairs, it will take approx. 2 hours and is designated easy. The book talks to you like a tour guide and starts you off at Greenland Dock telling you the docks go back to the 17th century and denoting their links to the whale trade. Following the route around you find yourself at Nelson House, and next to it the dry dock used for building clippers and warships until it was closed in 1968. On to the Pumphouse educational museum and Globe wharf one of the finest warehouses left in the docks. Walk past St Mary's Church where three of the four owners of the Mayflower are buried and you find yourself at the Mayflower pub. The walk then leads down Elephant Lane through the King's Stair Gardens and onto the Thames Path to see the ruins of a 14th century manor house and the Angel pub where J.M.W Turner painted The Fighting Temeraire.
At each stage of the walk the book provides a glossy picture of a point of interest and some historical detail about the place. A detailed Ordnance survey of the area is given with the walk shown upon it. There are contact details for the Tourist Information Centre should you want to linger longer - or find out further details about the places of interest mentioned. There is even a note as to how to get to the walk in the first place and where to park etc. This book is a really thorough and reliable guide.
The other walks are detailed in a similar vein. We have only done two 'easy' walks so far but they were very enjoyable. A walk is so much more interesting when you have points to look out for on the way. Hopefully we will eventually get to some of the more obscure places noted in the book as they look really intriguing. It certainly whets your appetite for travel.
The paperback version of this book is available on Amazon for £10.87 (24/07/13)
A wonderful book. Would thoroughly recommend.