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Tonbridge & Malling Ramblers

Lyme Disease

Kent Area has asked us to remind you all about the risk of Lyme Disease which is now reported to be particularly prevalent in our part of the country. A particular point we discussed was that ticks encountered on a walk can hide in clothing and bite on a later occasion. It is not clear whether washing will kill them, but some sources suggest tumble drying for ten minutes prior to washing.

How to avoid tick bites

  • cover your skin while walking outdoors and tuck your trousers into your socks
  • use insect repellent on your clothes and skin – products containing DEET are best
  • stick to paths whenever possible
  • wear light-coloured clothing so ticks are easier to spot and brush off

See a GP if:

  • you've been bitten by a tick or visited an area in the past month where ticks are found
    AND, you get:
  • flu-like symptoms - such as feeling hot and shivery, headaches, aching muscles or feeling sick, or
  • a circular red rash
Tell them that you have been in forests or grassy areas.

Although the Countryside Code states....

leave gates and property as you find them and follow paths unless wider access is available, the attached report encourages us to be sensible where gates and ropes are in place to prevent animals from roaming into dangerous situations.

Full report https://www.horseandhound.co.uk/news/horse-trapped-bridge-eton-windsor-rbfrs-675530

Thankfully, in this case the horse was recovered successfully, but it was obviously a very stressful situation which could have been avoided.

To all walkers

In response to recent feedback from several experienced volunteer leaders of this group could we ask all participants on future walks to respect the leader's role at all times. This includes -

  • allowing the leader to lead and determine the pace
  • to comply with the leader’s request to wait for slower walkers, particularly in hilly conditions, and, not immediately race ahead when they do catch up. The cohesion of the group will be lost if people disappear into the distance and, possibly, get lost.
  • if you wish to leave the main led group to take a shorter route, always discuss this with the leader, preferably, before the branch point so that everyone is clear as to what route you intend to take and who is then responsible for the splinter group.
  • could we ask walk leaders when submitting walks of 6 miles or more in future, (a) to consider in advance any shortcut options and, if available, mention them in the published programme so that they can be discussed at the start of the walk, and (b), perhaps provide a map for any alternative route (none of this is mandatory, but it is one way of providing for the diversity of wishes within the group, when possible).

Happy Walking



This year’s AGM will be held on Sunday 1st December 2019 at the end of our Christmas lunch. The AGM will receive reports and elect a committee for 2019/2020. The venue has yet to be decided but it will be within the borough of Tonbridge & Malling. To find the location and exact timing contact the Chairman after 1st October. Any motions for the AGM should be presented to the Chairman by the end of October 2019, as should any applications for membership of the committee.


Last year’s AGM was held on 2nd December before the pudding and the coffees during the annual pre-Christmas meal, which this time was at The Spitfire pub in Kings Hill. It followed a generally mud free short walk with 22 members led by Andy which helped to whip up the appetite. The existing committee members were all re-appointed except for Dave who stood down as Secretary. Dave has served TMRA for countless years (man and boy) and the Chairman and everyone else thanked him for what he had done.
We have a vacancy for a Parish Footpath Observer reporting path problem in the West Peckham area. If you can help, please contact Neil or Mike.

Kent Area AGM 2019

The next Area AGM will be at St Andrew’s Church Hall, Paddock Wood hosted by the Tunbridge Wells group on Saturday 2nd February (see the Area Review for details). Come along and see how Kent Area works and have a chat with members of other groups. Lunch is provided, and there will be a walk after the meeting. It’s always an interesting event

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

This is a new EU legal framework which comes into force on 25 May 2018. Its purpose is to give individuals more control and protection of their personal data. It introduces new regulations for all organisations that process (collect, manage and use) personal data. Here is a link to the Ramblers privacy policy.

Lost Ways

Work is underway on a project to find lost pathways in Kent as part of a national response (“Don't Lose Your Ways“) by the Ramblers Association to footpath legislation. The legislation broadly means that if a path existed before 1949 and has not been recorded, or is not in the process of being put on the definitive map by 2026, it will be extinguished then and lost forever. "Lost Ways" is Kent's own part of the Ramblers national response.
We have all walked a path that seems to go nowhere or doesn't connect with where we think it should. These paths are potential lost ways.
On behalf of TMRA, I have volunteered to be group co-coordinator for this project. At present, a number of preliminary field surveys are being undertaken, where route anomalies have been identified. The survey will consist of photos, showing what's on the ground, together with anecdotal evidence - for example chatting to local residents, dog walkers and so on - together with information gained from historical and current maps.
When these surveys have been completed the data will be used to determine which of the route anomalies are suitable "Lost Ways Candidates " and therefore will go forward for more in depth research and will form part of the "Candidate Route Dossier".

I will keep TMRA informed as the project progresses. Frank

Important news for dog owners

From April 2016, all dog owners in England and Scotland will have to ensure their dog is micro chipped.

See link for further details:

dog micro chipping law Britain


Over the hills
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