Wessex Nordic Walking was started by Ashley Sandy in 2015. Since the she has been running Nordic walking lessons, classes and adventure walks in the beautiful countryside around the market towns of Marlborough, Pewsey and Hungerford in North Wiltshire and West Berkshire. Ashley is assisted by walk leaders Billy Morrison and Bev Hams. In 2018 she was joined by instructor Denise Bilton who leads walks and holds lessons in the Newbury area.
Every week our groups enjoy short and fast walks in Savernake Forest or at historical sites such as Avebury as well as regular longer adventure walks to explore the fabulous scenery of North Wessex including the Ridgeway, the Downs and all of the nine White Horses of Wiltshire. Denise offers weekly and weekend walks in and around Newbury including Greenham Common, the Kennet and Avon canal and the wonderful downs of West Berkshire.
The groups often enjoy a celebratory coffee after the walk in the many lovely cafes around the area.
Members of the group have undertaken local challenge walks too from improving speed and techniques at our local Parkruns, sponsored walking challenges for local charities as well as longer challenges such as the Sarsen Trail from Avebury to Stonehenge. In 2019 a few of the group will take on the 50k Race to the Stones – a full day on the Ridgeway from Wantage to Avebury.
In 2019 Ashley will offering some weekend challenge walks in other parts of the UK. We are looking forward to joining Nic’s Nordic Walks in the Lake District in May and to attending the Purbeck Nordic Walking Festival in September for the 3rd year.
Ashley has always enjoyed keeping fit but preferred outdoor fitness such as running and hiking to being indoors in the gym. Over the years she has undertaken many challenge runs and walks from Race to Life to the Great South Run.
Ashley learned to Nordic walk in 2005 while living in Switzerland and loved how it was a great alternative to running for fitness and calorie burn as well as making those longer hikes much easier! Ashley continued to enjoy Nordic walking on return to the UK but was frustrated that there was no-one to teach her friends how to join her.
Deciding that she wanted to share her passion for Nordic walking with others, Ashley trained to be an instructor with NWUK in 2015.
Since then she has built up a great group of walkers in the local area who enjoy walks in the downs, on the Kennet and Avon canal and exploring the many areas of outstanding natural beauty in the North Wessex Downs.
Billy Morrison (Walk Leader)
Billy Morrison has been walking with the group since beginning of 2016. She is a very experienced nordic walker, having learned before she met me.
Billy in a previous life was an occupational therapist so has a great understanding of anatomy and exercise. She has been a regular nordic walker over the last year and decided at beginning of 2017 that she would like to train to be a NWUK leader and be able to help me leading walks as well as warm up and cool downs.
When she is not walking she loves cooking and skiing. Billy also runs her own bespoke bra fitting business – making ladies feel and look great.
Beverly Hams (Walk Leader)
Bev is an avid walker with 2 fabulous dogs, Buster and Milo she is always found walking on Salisbury Plain. Bev started nordic walking in January 2017 and quickly took to the technique to further improve her fitness and speed (she is pretty speedy without the poles too!). With her passion for nordic walking and her local knowledge of lots of walks around the Pewsey and Upavon area it was only a matter of time before Bev joined me as a walk leader. She leads some lovely walks around the Salisbury plain area and some new routes around Pewsey and Woodborough.
When not nordic walking Bev makes fabulous traybake cakes and sells them to order, online and via food festivals. If you want a delicious cake for an occasion then contact Bev at https://www.apieceofcakebybev.net