Last weekend saw over 200 people set out on a variety of guided walks as part of a popular walking festival

The Ross Walking Festival included explorations of the local history and the characters who shaped it, birdlife along the River Wye, geology of the Wye Valley, local creative sculptures, wartime secrets and the town’s special linear arboretum with its diversity of trees, each with a story to tell. Walkers enjoyed cream teas at the Speech House and an excellent roast lunch at the Rising Sun pub in the Forest, and hopefully some also relaxed at the Equinox Festival down at the bandstand on Saturday.

The Walking Festival has been an annual feature of the Ross calendar for well over a decade. It was started as a way of attracting staying visitors to the town to boost the tourism spend and has always been strongly supported by a myriad of smaller independent businesses in and around Ross. The Committee would like to extend a really heartfelt thanks to these supporters; and also to two new sponsors, Muddy Boots and Calendar Lady Promotions, who enabled planning to go ahead at a very uncertain time.

The 2021 festival attracted a much higher proportion of new bookers, and we had a good delegation from south Wales and even as far away as London.

A festival spokesperson said: "A huge thank you to all the invaluable volunteer walk leaders and back markers who made the festival possible and imparted their stories and knowledge to all our visitors as they explored the area.

"Next year it is hoped we can make it even bigger and better... and ideas are already starting to flow! Put the date in your diary - September 23-25, 2022, and invite your friends to come and joinâ?¦"