The National Trust has launched its search for the nation's favourite National Trust walk, backed by a line-up of celebrities, including the comedian Omid Djalili, the best selling crime-writer Val McDermid and Time Team's archaeologist Francis Pryor,
As part of the National Trust's nationwide Festival of Walking*, which is sponsored by PruHealth, eight celebrity supporters have nominated their favourite routes across England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Hoping to inspire everyone whatever their age or ability to get out and explore the amazing outdoor places cared for by the National Trust, the celebrities' walks cover more than 30 miles and range from Adam Hart-Davis' invigorating walk along the Devonshire coastline, Paul Rose's route through the spectacular scenery of the Lake District to some lesser known walks in the gardens and parks cared for by the National Trust.
Avid explorer and presenter, Paul Rose said: "Walking is just so amazingly simple. You need no special equipment, no special training, no special clothes; you just close your front door and go for a walk. It's very easy, just go out and explore.
"Windermere is so accessible, you can just walk a few minutes out of town and yet it has a great sense of true wilderness. It's a beautiful working environment. This is my local connection to nature right here."
In contrast to the dramatic hills and lakes of Windermere, the actress and singer Toyah Willcox chose Capability Brown's sweeping parkland, Croome Park in Worcestershire.
Toyah said: "Croome Park is just absolutely stunning. Worcestershire has beautiful rambling landscapes, gentle rolling hills, it's agricultural land so it's ever-changing and it has a very natural old-world feel about it. Croome is really cleverly designed. You look out across these rolling gentle hills and you see wonderful monuments, follies and statues and the lake in particular is really lovely. You truly feel you own the whole park while you walk around it."
As well as videos of the stars lobbying for their chosen walk the National Trust are encouraging people to submit their own favourites. From October 20th, the public can join the debate online at www.nationaltrust.org.uk./walkingfestival . Everyone who nominates their own favourite will be entered into a prize draw to win National Trust walking boots
Notes for editors
* The Festival aims to help people discover more ways to have fun outdoors and get back in touch with nature. From 22nd to 30th October 2011, during the half-term school holidays, more than 1,000 events, including barefoot walks, silly walks and themed walks for all ages will be taking place at National Trust places across the country. There are wildlife walks, heritage walks and more than 800 walking routes available to download from the National Trust website, offering great ideas for a family day out.
To find out more about walking with the National Trust, new walking trails or any of the Festival of Walking events, go to www.nationaltrust.org.uk/walkingfestival
About the National Trust
With more than 250,000 hectares (660,000 acres) of countryside and 710 miles of coastline across England, Wales and Northern Ireland there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors with the National Trust.
The National Trust cares for 300 inspiring historic houses and gardens across England, Wales and Northern Ireland. From former workers' cottages to the most iconic stately homes, and from mines and mills to theatres and inns, the stories of people and their heritage are at the heart of everything it does. People of all ages, individuals, schools and communities get involved each year with its projects, events and working holidays and over 61,000 volunteers help to bring the properties alive for the Trust's 4 million members. Find out more at ww.nationaltrust.org.uk.
Assistant Press Officer
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