Making Tracks Children's Walks Project
On 23 July 2013 Mytholmroyd Walkers' Action launched the 20 page children's booklet Making Tracks in Mytholmroyd. The booklet includes six beautiful walks with maps and countryside information, as well as a quiz and other activities for young minds. We have provided Mytholmroyd primary schools, playgroups and children's clubs with free copies of the booklet to give to their children, to encourage them to enjoy and learn about the local countryside.
Thanks go to Hebden Royd Town Council, the Co-operative Society, Calderdale Council (both its Community Small Grants and Rural Development Grants), Calderdale Council's Countryside Service, its Countryside Volunteers, its Rights of Way Team, and the artist, Jo Poyser, whose Making Tracks illustrations for children's walks inspired us to start this project.
The Making Tracks in Mytholmroyd booklet includes:
You can purchase your own copy of Making Tracks in Mytholmroyd for £1.50 in several local Mytholmroyd shops. Alternatively, you can order and pay for a copy via PayPal by clicking the Buy Now button on the right. The price is £1.50 (including postage).
Development of the Making Tracks Project
In 2011, when the Walk@Work leaflets were nearly all distributed, MWA decided to apply for grants to develop and publish a walks booklet for children. Some of the Walk@Work walks were short and easy enough for young children, and others could be adapted.
MWA was successful in securing the following grants for this project:
- October 2011 - Hebden Royd Town Council £500.
- April 2012 - Cooperative Society Community Fund £500.
- May 2012 - Calderdale Council Community Small Grants £380
(for the booklet and associated costs).
- May 2012 - Calderdale Council Rural Development Grant £1,000
(for footpath improvements - materials and volunteer labour).
- Oct 2013 - Hebden Royd Town Council £500
(for waymark signs and further footpath improvements).
MWA members and supporters, including young children and the local Brownies, tried out a number of possible routes. We wanted to identify six walks and include some suitable for buggies and very young children. In selecting the final walks, we identified where improvements were needed. In some cases additional steps were needed for little legs; as always there were some serious drainage problems on some of the walks and boardwalks were needed to provide a way over muddy ground.
The booklet was designed and illustrated by Jo Poyser, who had already produced children's walk booklets for the well-known Making Tracks series. Jo has a real talent for drawing walk routes and related nature games and puzzles in a child-friendly way. When we contacted her, she readily agreed to design and illustrate our Making Tracks in Mytholmroyd booklet. Digital print ready artwork was then put together by our webmaster Paul Ruffle. We had an initial supply of 3,000 copies printed, and distributed a free copy to every child in Mytholmroyd. During the preparation of the booklet we also organised local walks for children, both to test out possible footpaths and to provide more walk opportunities for children locally.
One walk, which we particularly wanted to include in Making Tracks in Mytholmroyd, is the Nature Walk, which runs from Dauber Bridge up the hill to the nature reserve at Broadhead Clough. There is so much for children to enjoy and learn by exploring Broadhead Clough. Smaller children might find the 60 steep steps part-way into the reserve too challenging, but will still be able to enjoy the woodland and bubbling stream at the start.