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Thursday 30th July 2009

It's been a battle, designing layouts and trying to remember HTML, but finally the web site is up and running!

I used to develop web sites for a living, but that was many years ago. Getting to grips with the technology has been an interesting experience, and while getting this site up and running has taken longer than I expected, it's been worth it - Walking for Wellbeing now has this incredibly useful outpost online.

The site is an opportunity for us to get our message across without sounding like a broken record. Every time someone asks me about the project, I get a glazed expression as I explain what it's all about and that we're trying to achieve for the hundredth time. My passion for the project is high as ever, but my enthusiasm for talking about it is hard to maintain having told the story so many times. So, the site is our opportunity to inform and elaborate on the concept.

It'll grow into so much more than an information source, though. We plan to have a discussion forum where people who have taken part in walks can comment and discuss their progress. In due course, we'll offer interactive walking logs where you can track your walks and count-up your mileage. We'll provide a place to upload your photos of your walks so you can share your favourite views or wildlife shots. Our library of local walks will increase over time to provide definitive localised walk directories. As the project develops, we hope to offer all this and more to give you everything you need to send you on your way.

Of course, if you'd like to help with the project, there are a few ways you can contribute. We're eternally grateful for any help you can give, even if it's just an email telling us what you think of the project.

Getting all this up and online is also a personal milestone for me. Many of my "big ideas" end up being just that: ideas. This brainchild has developed its own momentum and has had nothing other than positive feedback from friends, family and strangers alike. For me, wanting to do something as exciting as this and following it through to this point is an achievement in its own right.

I walked yesterday, fitting seven or eight miles in while the weather was settled. After a couple of days of heavy showers, it was refreshing to have a little sunshine to play with, and even nicer to find the ground wasn't soft and squishy underfoot. I did a circular walk from Buckingham to Gawcott, to Preston Bissett to Hillesden, through Lenborough and back to Buckingham. There are some cracking views on the way round - I spotted Steeple Claydon and Padbury from a distance - and all this recent changable weather has produced fields and fields of golden yellow wheat.

The recent unpredictable weather has left me a little demotivated about getting out there and walking. There's nothing worse than getting soaked through while walking, even during the summer. Without wanting to become a gear snob, I'd love to have a proper waterproof jacket to keep the water out so I can go walking whatever the weather. For the time being, I'll make do with my cheap-oh plastic mac and take advantage of the good weather... when it appears.