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Main Roads and Well-Lit Routes



  • Sofa Jockey

    Part of the problem with tickboxes or something marked 'safer' would be how to determine what counts as qualifying, given that there are so many factors at work here with a good deal of subjectivity.

    As an example, a route I've been working on uses secluded paths through woods because, well, there's a whopping big wood between the two places.

    While of course safety is one of the Slow Ways criteria, so is walking off-road.

    Perhaps the way forward is for surveyors to be sure to include a good selection of route photos so that people can view these before setting out and make their own mind up?

  • mark

    Whilst I feel the first priority is 'off road', I do think there is a place for a 'paved route' option should one be available.

  • Midland Walker

    I think this is a very good point, if Slow Ways are intended for everyone and designed as a map for walking journeys at all times of day and in all weathers, then it needs to include routes which are suitable for use throughout the year and at all times of day. It needs an 'All times and all weathers' category or flag.

    A lot of off-road routes are very weather dependent, no use when its dark, or after heavy rain when paths have turned to mud. The 'off-road' thing is too binary because there's nothing wrong with walking along roads, the issue is more with very busy, congested or fast, unpleasant roads, there's lots of very quiet roads which are pleasant to walk and being paved, lit, safe and suitable for use all year round, in all weathers.

    If there's too much emphasis on the 'off road' rather than all-times and all weathers, then it risks becoming a collection of rambling routes, for use on dry summers days, or needing walking gear. Ideally it needs both and an option to filter.


  • David Sanderson

    In my opinion the desire to be "off road" has been one of the biggest faults in the routes I've reviewed. On a couple of occasions at the end of a 12km walk, as I've come into the destination village I've been diverted away from a high street of shops, pubs and cafes in order to follow a series of overgrown footpaths and maybe cross a couple of stiles to get to the meeting point. I've also reviewed a couple of routes in Birmingham which in the spirit of being off road have added roughly 50% distance whilst simultaneously not including any stopping points, despite being in the second largest city in the UK!


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