Story categories


Here you’ll find Slow Ways stories, films, blogs and news. Things to browse and share, to be informed and inspired by.

We’ll put out requests for stories and images at regular intervals, and share collaborations that link Slow Ways with music, art, maps and other creative projects.

Share your own Slow Ways stories and photos - with friends, through groups and on social media using #SlowWays.

What can we learn from listening to the land?

21st December, 2021 by Guest

Earlier this month Laura Tyley from Flourishing Diversity got in contact. Laura could see connections between Slow Ways and an event she helped to organise called Living Nature. At the event contributors spoke about the importance of walking, journeys, relationships and nature.

Thanks to Laura, in the post below you can listen to highlights from the event. This includes thoughts from pilgrims, the head of a village in Finland and a Ghanian photographer.

Living Nature 2021 was an online programme of events to explore the future of human relationships with nature. Focussing on through the lens of art, science and Indigenous wisdom, the event was organised by  Flourishing Diversity and Invisible Dust.

The Listening To Land session brought people together to share their experiences of listening to land and how that helped to shape their lives. 

Peace pilgrim and life-long activist Satish Kumar (who spent two and a half years journeying through 15 countries on a 8000-mile peace walk) told us that to do right by the land, we must learn to read the book of nature and hear tongues in trees, books in running brooks and sermons in stones.

COP26 pilgrim Jolie Booth offered wisdom on the expansiveness of listening to the land. This is something she personally experienced whilst walking the Belinus ley line, known as ‘The Spine of Albion’, on a 500-mile modern-day pilgrimage from London to Glasgow.

Dr. Tero Mustonen is head of the village of Selkie in North Karelia, Finland. Tero is a passionate defender of the traditional worldview and the cosmology of his people. He offered stories from his lands that sparked reflections on life’s interconnectivity, fragility, resilience and adaptability. 

Nii Obodai is a Ghanian photographer who is committed to documenting the diversity of the world through photography, audio and text. He’s noticed, from connecting with many different landscapes and cultures, that we always have more in common than we think. Nii believes we are often carrying kindred stories and collectively searching for similar solutions. 

These lessons are just a few of the insights shared in this inspiring one hour conversation, so we invite you to sit back and enjoy more insights and wisdom in the full recording of  ‘Listening To The Land’.

And we leave you with a question; what have you learnt from listening to the land? If you wish, please share your responses with Flourishing Diversity via Instagram or email

Categorised under Video, Article and tagged as Flourishing Diversity, Satish Kumar, Jolie Booth, Tero Mustonen, Nii Obodai, Pilgrimage.

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Q&A with David Sanderson, who's now walked 500 miles of Slow Ways!

24th November, 2021 by Dan Raven-Ellison

To celebrate his century of Slow Ways routes, I reached out to David with some questions. I wanted to find out what makes him tick, what he's planning next and any tips he has for people who'd like to follow in his footsteps.

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Michael Tormey: How off-road are Slow Ways routes, really?

10th September, 2021 by Guest

Slow Ways walking routes are designed to be as off-road as possible... but what proportion of them really are off-road? And does it matter?

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Eight Tips to Make Your Slow Ways Surveying Life Easier

11th August, 2021 by Cristie Moore

I don’t know about you, but I found the idea of surveying a Slow Ways route a bit daunting.What if I got it wrong? What if my survey was so poor that people would complain about it?

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Growing Great Ideas backing for Slow Ways

20th July, 2021 by Cristie Moore

New lottery fund supporting transformational change provides 7-year funding

Slow Ways is delighted to be one of nine initiatives offered long term funding by the National Lottery Community Fund’s ‘Growing Great Ideas’ programme. A grant of £3 million has been awarded to Slow Ways over seven years from the new fund that “aims to offer long term, multi-year funding to initiatives we believe have the potential to achieve transformative and longer-term change”.

Growing Great Ideas is part of the Fund’s UK Portfolio, exploring different ways to invest in new ways of doing things. Launched in January 2021, over 230 proposals have been received to date. Rather than supporting initiatives focused on a single group, organisation or project it’s investing in “networks, ecologies, and coalitions working towards a common purpose and new philosophy”. This ‘ecosystem approach’ embraces grassroots activity, innovation and imagination, infrastructure and systems, as well as economic, environmental and cultural influences on society.

For more about the programme and its first awards, see this blog from John Knights and Andriana Ntziadima.

As well as expanding the current Slow Ways core staff team, a major part of the funding will be used to inspire support at community level, ensure inclusion is at the heart of our work and grow new narratives around walking and wheeling. It’s a huge step towards creating a national network of walking routes connecting every town and city across the UK.

In a blog for the National Lottery, Olivia Oldham explores the links between Slow Ways and the aims of Growing Great Ideas.

Dan Raven-Ellison, Slow Ways Founder, said “Slow Ways is a large-scale and long-term challenge. We need to work with thousands of people to create, shape, review, survey and enjoy over 100,000km of walking routes. That means having a national conversation about walking that is personal, hyper-local and connects communities across the country. This critical National Lottery funding will be a massive help with this undertaking.”

Support for Slow Ways from Sport England, Paths for All, The Pilgrim Trust and Kestrelman Trust - as well as thousands of volunteers and supporters - has been invaluable over the past 18 months. We’re looking forward to working with the National Lottery and the inspiring projects who will be growing their own great ideas!

Categorised under News and tagged as National Lottery.

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Michael Tormey - How direct are the Slow Ways routes, really?

2nd July, 2021 by Guest

My name is Michael Tormey. I’m originally from the United States, but I’ve spent the past year studying for an MSc in Transportation Planning and Engineering at the University of Southampton. For my Masters dissertation, I’ve been looking into how and where we can focus efforts to continue improving the Slow Ways network of walking routes. Read all about my analysis here.

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The Listening Walk takes to the Slow Ways

15th June, 2021 by Darren Moore

In this article we take to Slow Way Woodwool with David Matthews who is walking 6000 miles to visit every Samaritans in England, Scotland and Wales.

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June newsletter

10th June, 2021 by Cristie Moore

With the summer months upon us, light evenings and a focus on home turf for holidays it’s an ideal time to check out Slow Ways across Great Britain. Whether looking to see what’s local or planning adventurous longer journeys, it’s a great time to join thousands of others in exploring Slow Ways and helping to create a national network of walking routes. Here’s a news update from the past few weeks.

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‘Slow Ways Voices’ captured in short films

7th June, 2021 by Cristie Moore

6 films of 1-2 minutes’ duration have been created by 2 film-makers to show people in different settings, enjoying walking and making use of Slow Ways for a variety of reasons.

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'Slow Ways Voices' blog - Mahroof Malik

7th June, 2021 by Cristie Moore

Mahroof joined the initial Slow Ways ‘hack day’ in January 2020 to help form its early thinking and start the process of creating a network of walking routes.He went for a walk with friend Belal and film maker Nico Hambleton to explore the idea of Slow Ways. It made sense to walk one of the Slow Ways routes, from Bishop’s Castle to Minsterley, taking in tea shops, Shropshire Hills tracks and trig points along the way.Here’s some of what they spoke about. And here’s the short film, part of a suite of ‘Slow Ways Voices’ films.

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People wanted from every town and city in Great Britain to help make a new national walking network - Slow Ways launch press release

7th June, 2021 by Cristie Moore

During the Spring 2020 lockdown volunteers from across the nation plotted a network of walking routes that connect all of Great Britain’s towns and cities.Without leaving home over 7,000 ‘Slow Ways’ walking routes were mapped using existing paths, trails and roads. Combined, the routes stretch for 100,000km and lap the equator twice.

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April newsletter

7th June, 2021 by Cristie Moore

Firstly, thank you. Thank you for your continued interest in Slow Ways. There’s been a lot going on. There’s been a few delays. Yet we know there are thousands of you waiting and willing to get out, to find out what Slow Ways walking routes look and feel like – on screen and under foot. As the world around us opens up, we hope you are in good health and spirits and are looking forward to opportunities for new adventures in the coming months.

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Slow Ways YouTube channel

7th June, 2021 by Cristie Moore

For all things Slow Ways on YouTube - webinars, animations, 'Slow Ways Voices' and more - visit and subscribe to our own Slow Ways YouTube channel.

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Slow Ways webinar recordings

7th June, 2021 by Cristie Moore

To watch recordings of presentations on an introduction to Slow Ways, how to use the website, how to survey a Slow Ways route, just visit the Slow Ways YouTube channel.

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Slow Ways snaps

7th June, 2021 by Cristie Moore

Back in March - in a time of restrictions and before Slow Ways was formally launched - a twitter-call went out: “Got any photos of inspiring and inviting paths?

You responded - with photographs of paths in urban and remote places - and everywhere in between.

@GordonBarr, @meletherton, @Mr_Grumble @AuditBanshee, @Sarah_Hants

Take a look at the thread of images from across the UK.

Categorised under Photography and tagged as Photography.

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Slow Ways in numbers

7th June, 2021 by Cristie Moore

After 4 weeks of walking and reviewing Slow Ways the scores on the doors are in! Supporters of Slow Ways have gone to great lengths – literally, in some cases - to contribute by walking routes, taking the time to leave a review or submitting a survey. Thanks for all your inputs and efforts to get Slow Ways off to a flying start. Here’s an early mix of metrics, a stocktake of Slow Ways statistics.

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In the news - Slow Ways articles

7th June, 2021 by Cristie Moore

Slow Ways has been in the news in recent weeks. Click on each to read more.

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‘Slower Way of Walking’

7th June, 2021 by Cristie Moore

Article in Strider, Magazine of the Long Distance Walking Association, April 2021, by Rob Bushby, Slow Ways (and an LDWA Red Rose 100 finisher in 2015) Readers of Strider probably need no encouragement to walk further. Longer Distance Walking Association, anyone? You’ll know that Great Britain has lots of paths, trails and ways. Across the LDWA membership you’ve probably walked most if not all of them...

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Home to Studio via the Slow Way

18th May, 2021 by Cristie Moore

Rapper by night, outdoor instructor by day, Josh is heading to the studio in Dalton. Why not take the Slow Way? 

“The rhythm of the walking…it helps me connect to the rhythm of the music.”

Featuring Josh’s own Lake District-inspired track Great District - ‘Rich inside I won’t ever be a pauper, my whole life been a Walker’ - this short film by Henry Iddon and Rich Berry follows him on a local South Cumbria walk.

Music – ‘Great District’ by Swerve & JD.

This film was supported with funding from The National Lottery/Sport England.

Categorised under Walking, Video and tagged as Slow Ways, Stories, Film, Video, Henry Iddon, Rich Berry, Josh Duncan, Voices.

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Where will you go?

23rd April, 2021 by Dan Raven-Ellison

To mark the launch of Slow Ways today, thank you very much to Jess Mountfield for volunteering to make this beautiful film for us and to Jo Riley for composing the soundtrack.

The short animation captures the spirit of Slow Ways... it's far more than just a network of walking routes.

Where will you go?

Categorised under Walking, Video and tagged as Slow Ways, Stories, Film, Video, Animation, Jess Mountfield, Jo Riley.

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