30th November 2020

Love the Outdoors? Then Adopt a Path

Photograph showing an Adopt a Path volunteer in action

Love the outdoors? Then join Somerset County Council’s Adopt a Path scheme or become an England Coast Path Trail Watcher and help protect access to Somerset’s countryside.

The Adopt a Path scheme is open to anyone whether they are walkers, horse riders or cyclists, and almost any public right of way can be adopted.

Volunteers are simply asked to use their chosen path as often as they can and report any problems they come across. If they want to, they can also help with some light maintenance, with equipment provided.

Paths can range from 50 metres to several miles long – or several paths can be combined to create a circular route.

Trail Watchers fulfil a similar role, with the England Coast Path being the latest trail to have a Watcher scheme launched. Volunteers can now help look after part of the 58 miles between Brean Down and Minehead.

Councillor David Fothergill, Leader of Somerset County Council, said: “Volunteering whilst enjoying Somerset’s beautiful countryside is a perfect combination. If you love the great outdoors, tend to walk a familiar route and are interested in adopting a path or trail watching, we’d love to hear from you. Last year, our fantastic Rights of Way volunteers spent a combined total of 18,112 hours looking after Somerset’s 3,800 miles of public footpaths, bridleways and byways. I’d like to thank our many volunteers who help keep Somerset accessible and beautiful.”

Volunteer Jackie Marsh said: “The Adopt a Path scheme has been a great way to get outdoors, see the countryside near my home and meet some people who are really passionate about our countryside. At the same time I help to keep the paths clear and open for others to enjoy.

“I would recommend this scheme to anyone with an interest in getting out and about more. As a volunteer you will only need to walk the path 3-4 times a year so you may want to buddy up with a friend and adopt other paths together.”

For more information on how to volunteer, email rowvolunteers@somerset.gov.uk, phone 0300 123 2224 or apply online at www.somerset.gov.uk/get-involved/volunteering/volunteer-with-the-public-rights-of-way-team/.

During the summer growing season you may also notice paths obstructed by vegetation. To report a problem, or find out about planned vegetation cutting, please visit Explore Somerset mapping at https://roam.somerset.gov.uk/roam/map.