Armed with two 8-year old (now 13-year old) twins, my wife and I have decided to walk the coast of Britain. With the kids in tow, and juggling work life with school life with homework life with, well, life, it isn’t going to be easy. We are genuinely wondering how we will ever be able to complete the task.
The best way, we think, is to stop pondering and just get on with it.
So that’s what we are doing.
My theory is to start our walk around the coast of southern Essex. This is because Southend-on-Sea lies on this stretch. It has an adventure park at the beachfront, with roller coasters. We took the kids there once before and they loved it. “If you come and do a walk,” I told them, “we’ll go to the theme park afterwards”. They said yes, little realising what they were getting themselves in to…
Hi there, good luck with the walk and will be following your trek with interest. Not sure how the two children will cope! Hope you don’t mind, but I have put a link from my Coastal Walk blog: http://ruthl.wordpress.com/
Hi Ruth – thank you and I’ve also put a link to your blog. I’m not sure we’ll be catching you up any time soon – alas, our trip today was cancelled…
Hi Nic and Family, I have just found yor blog via Ruth Livingstone. Its just great that you are doing this walk around the coast,and with 8yr old twins Wow! I have been at it for a little over 2 years now on and off and because I live on the Devon coast I decided to go both ways so far I have made it to Porthcawl (and the other way) and Kings Lynn.
Good Luck with your endeavours
Hi Martyn – Thanks for getting in touch; I’ve certainly come across your website in the past and read it with interest. I’m very impressed by the distance you cover in each walk. What with the kids we are lucky to get more than 7 miles most of the time. I suspect you’ll be long finished before we even get half the way round! Good luck and stay in touch! Nic
This was posted on FaceBook and I thought of you:
“Does anyone fancy being a Ramblers case study? I’m looking for someone who walks with their family, preferably someone with young-ish children, who would be willing to talk to a journalist about all the benefits of going for a walk with the family. If you’re interested in helping out the Ramblers (and having your moment of fame) please get in touch at email@example.com “
He he thanks Ruth! I’ve sent an email, as the kids are very excited at the thought of their moment of fame!
Good luck with the walk, we hope to join you for some of it soon. Ben, Debbie, Jessica and Sophie.
I love this idea! I’ll be looking forward to your hke through Sussex – some fabulous views and interesting towns for you along the Sussex coast – especially Hastings Old Town.
Thanks TB. We’re also looking foward to a bit of elevation round there – our walk so far has been pretty flat.
good luck with your task.thought about doing this myself but will wait untill i retire and do it all in one go i think.
hopefully by them (2017) you will have finnished and your stats will be of great use(maybe your book)…just wondering though,the further you get from home the more your travelling and expences will be.are you going to drive upto scotland every weekend etc??
Thanks James –
Rest assured that we will not be finished by 2017. If you start that year and do it in one go you will be finished well before us. I therefore look forward to reading your book first!
At the moment we are a drive away from home, but we are getting close to the time when we will want to stay overnight. That will be a little difficult in terms of juggling our kids’ homework committments but we’ll see how we go. I doubt we’ll be walking every weekend by then. Maybe one on, one off.
As we get further and further away, who knows? The kids will be teenagers and I fear rebellion! At what point will they want to drop out and will they be old enough to be left on their own at home? Will we come back to a Facebook-publicised party in which our entire home gets trashed? Will we have to move into a motor home whilst our house is repaired and will that make us more mobile and able to do more walking?
We pondered the future for quite a while until we realised that if we didn’t start walking soon it would be too late. So off we went, taking our weekend lives into unchartered territory.
We’re loving it so far…
Wow, what a great idea! 🙂
I just love your site! My husband and I have big plans to walk the coast of Britain. You’ll be our handy guide. Real people taking real walks! By the way, I’ve added to to our home page (in the blog roll). All the best, Jody
Thanks Jody; kind words indeed! There are quite a few of us walking the coast and there are a few links in my blogroll. I hope one day we’ll be able to find just a few of the things you have picked up whilst beachcombing. Nic
You guys are awesome and your adventure is fantastic! Thank you so much for bringing me a bit closer to my Kili Challenge goal. I look forward to following your walk:)
Thanks Corina – and we yours!
I have nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to follow this link to the ‘rules’. If you don’t participate in the bloggers awards, then please just feel appreciated. 🙂
Wow! Thank you Echo!
My pleasure 🙂
Sounds like a fabulous challenge that you have set for yourself. This is going to be a great adventure and I am looking forward to exploring the coast of Britain with you.
My partner and I talked for years about doing this, putting it off until …our son grows up …we have more time … etc. Anyway, we finally decided to stop putting it off and get on with it. Our walk begins in Filey this Saturday (my partner’s birthday!), we are having a leisurely 9 mile stroll along the cliff tops to Scarborough and I am bursting with excitement. Love your blog, very inspiring, good luck with the rest of it!
Nic – It’s great to know there are now two Nics doing the walk! After years of thinking about doing it, it was on my birthday that I finally declared a stated intention to start. I wish you all the very very best on your journey and hope you find it as obsessive and life-rewarding as we do!!! If you keep any blog or on-line diary please let me know so I can post a link to it from my blog. And if you don’t please keep in touch anyway and let us know how you are getting on. Happy Birthday to your partener for this weekend. Nic
Thank you, thank you, thank you for supporting my project! As a token of my appreciation, I’d like to give you one of my photographs – just pick one from here: http://corinaskilichallenge.wordpress.com/charity-boutique/
Maybe you could use it as a screensaver – that way, I get to come along for the Coastal Path ride 🙂 Just pick a photograph and provide me with an email address where I could send it to. Happy trails, guys!
Wow thank you Corina ! Email sent to you. That’s very kind and thank you again. Good luck on your challenge. Nic
Thanks for drawing me into this adventure with a ‘like’! Ambitious. Energetic. Laudable. Well worth a ‘follow’ to see how you get on. But those taxi fares? Ouch! All the best from Rolling Harbour
Thank for your comment and for following!
Yes – the taxi fares. They are beginning to turn into a real dent. We have considered other options:
Trains/Buses – often run parallel to the coast, but there can be a considerable wait (especially on Sundays) and quite often they divert inland by a mile of so, adding extra to our walks. Also, when we finish a walk we tend to want to start for home as quickly as possible – we have a four-hour round trip from home to the coast at the moment. The kids in particular would not thank us for a train trip at the end. Further, four (often five) train tickets can end up as much as a single taxi fare.
Circular walks – we have done a few circular walks, with the aim of starting and ending at the same place, but of course that means we only walk half the distance along the coast, because we then have to turn around and walk back. That turns a 7,000-mile trip into a 14,000-mile trip. We’d never finish it!
Two cars – on occasion we have taken two cars down and parked one at the start and one at the end. As much as taking a taxi is not particularly green, bringing two cars down to the coast and then driving them back again is even worse.
So at the moment a taxi is a necessary evil. As we get further away from home and have to start overnighting I hope we will have more time to explore other travel options which are both cheaper and greener.
Fancy being interviewed for Talking Walking?
Andrew – Many thanks for getting in touch. I have sent you an email. Nic
Hi, I’m a photo editor of Polsih edition of National Geographic and I would like to very much to contact you (because of one image that you made). My email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hi Teresa – Thanks for stopping by. I have sent you an email. Nic
That sounds like such a great idea, really! Wish you guys the very best!
Thanks Josh – we are going to try our best to get round!
“we’ll go to the theme park afterwards” … very classic, – I would have fallen for this as well!
Well whenever we offer to take them to a theme park now they seem a bit reluctant…
Great idea. We have done something similar on the other side of the Atlantic, but on a much smaller scale:
You have given me ideas… walk around Long Island…
I see there are others like Ruth Livingstone that have similar blogs. Is this a common in the UK?
Thanks David. I visited your blog and love what you are doing, especially with all your beachcombing finds. If only we had the skill (and patience) to do something similar! We made Christmas decorations our of limpets once but that was about as far as we could go.
I think it fair today that on a per capita basis, waliking around the coast of Britain is not that common. We are a small a close-knit band.
🙂 Yes. But by and large Europeans still like to use their legs rather than their SUVs. I know of no one who has attempted to walk around Long Island. There was one person (a European of course) who kayaked around Long Island: http://controlgeek.net/blog/2011/9/22/completing-a-kayak-paddle-around-long-island.html
thank you for following my blog! happy that you like it:) what an interesting blog you have !! for sure will be back here 🙂
Very nice blog, I enjoy looking around in here!
I’ve found one of your photos very interesting, and I want to use it for a very soon project – a clothing project.
Can you please mail me? http://email@example.com 🙂
Hi Jonas – Emailing you now… Nic
Wingclipped, I was wondering if you and/or your lovely family would consider writing a guest post for us on preparation and necessities of walking the coastal paths? One of my bucket list items is walking bits and pieces of Britain’s coastal paths and I really have no idea on how to get started – or prepared. You are all so very experienced by now that I thought you’d be the perfect resource! Many thanks for your consideration. Have a great day at the beach, Jody
Hi Jody – I have sent you an email. Nic
Thank you! I’ll check.
We are currently developing an APP following the Thames Estuary Path, funded by a European body. We are currently gathering all content from the community. We really like the photos you have posted on your blog! Could we please have permission to use this photograph of St Margaret’s Church https://thecoastalpath.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/img_3475.jpg as it falls on one of our routes (Pitsea to Benfleet). We will of course link back to your blog.
You can contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also, for more information about the itself, visit http://www.mobile-explorer.co.uk/ and scroll down to the “Thames Estuary Path” logo.
Hi Amena – Thanks for your comment. I have sent you an email. Nic
Hi Nic, I see by your latest blog post that you’ve made it to Dorset, are you up to date now or have you made it to Devon!
I really would like to be a guest walker when you pass by my neck of the woods in Dawlish lots to see and do around these parts!
Hi Martyn – we’ve had a bit of a set back since May as Deb’s back went a bit wobbly (bit of a history with this) so we haven’t walked since May. We are going down to Bournemouth this weekend for a short “back in the saddle” walk but suffice to say we are a little while away from you yet. When we get to you we’d be delighted if you guest-walked with us. Nic
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Hello, I’d like to use one of your images in the making of the front cover of a book I’m doing. Could you contact me please?
Hello Len – Thanks for getting in touch. I have sent you an email. Nic
Wow – Hello fellow coastal walkers.
I’ve just stumbled on your site by accident – I’m always keenly on the look-out for those attempting to walk the entire coastline.
I’m currently doing the same thing, albeit all at once. I set off anticlockwise from Portishead, just over 4 and a half months ago with my dog Moose. We’re currently in Gillingham on a rest-dsy.
You can follow our journey on instagram & facebook which can be accessed via our website
I am also in touch with other coastal walkers as well if you’re i trrested in networking then I can put you in touch.
All the best & happy trails
Hi Chris –
Many thanks for getting in touch. As you may have seen from my blog, we have ground to a halt at the moment. We’ve reached that stage where we need to overnight during each walk, and schoolwork for our kids has rather taken over and put paid to much coastal walking. We still get one or two walks in each year, but I suspect we’ll need to wait another 3 or so and get through A-levels before we can start again in earnest. Good luck with yours!
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I’m not sure if these comments are still being monitored at the moment. I noticed a few others have used this section of the website for photo image use enquiries so I thought I would do so here as well.
We are interested in possibly using one of the photos of The Longest Bench from the 2013 Littlehampton post in a public art masterplan in Australia.
(This post – https://thecoastalpath.net/2013/08/12/55e-littlehampton-part-i/)
Could you please send me an email to discuss this?
Thank you and regards,
Hi Eugene – Thanks for getting in touch and I have emailed you. Regards. Nic