‘ALLO, ‘ALLO – It’s Heyford Amblers
You might wonder what a bar full of Yvettes & Renes has to do with a village walking group. Well, I’ll tell you.
In 2002 we were both made redundant when Express Lifts & British Timken closed their doors and we were a year or three short of getting a State Pension so were keen to find hobbies that didn’t cost anything. We put an advert in The Prattler to see if anyone would be interested in forming a walking group and the rest, as they say, is history.
The first few years we walked every Tuesday morning from the village and once a month from further afield. Our Autumn break took us to places like Yorkshire and Derbyshire and an 8 mile walk was the norm, with a pint or two half way. Move forward a few years and we came closer to home, to The Cotswolds and The Malverns, for a 6 mile daily walk. Further still brought us to Rutland Water and The Thames with 5 miles a day, leaving plenty of free time to explore at our own pace. Our Autumn breaks usually included a Theme Night, which is why we look so ridiculous in these photos.
Over the 18 years we have made some good friends, lost a few and gained a few. However, aches and pains, decline of hearing, memory and concentration are taking their toll. Our Tuesday walks no longer happen and we take it in turn to organise a 4 miler once a month with, the most important bit, a meal at the end of it, and we still have a Christmas lunch at The Olde Sun.
Our advice to anyone healthy enough would be to take up walking, maybe start a new village group. We highly recommend it for fitness, fun and friendship.
Shirley & Mick Collins