Social event

Thinking of joining us? Meet our member Ali

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Since Cranfield University’s Walks formed in April 2011 many students participated in its activities, which enabled them to discover the UK’s extensive network of footpaths and enjoy and appreciate beauty of the UK’s countryside. If you are a new student coming to Cranfield University and thinking of joining, hear from our existing and past members about their experiences  of being part of the society:
                      Ali in action.

Today I am talking to one of our most inspiring membersHello there, tell us something about yourself. Hi, my name is Ali and I’m from Saudi Arabia. I studied my Master of Science in Advanced Mechanical Engineering at Cranfield University, academic year 2016/2017.

What was your role in the walking society? I was the Photo Editor. As a committee member, my role included helping the committee in planning the walks but it was mainly to document every walk we had and share it through our social media pages.

Congratulations! You have won an award from the walking society. Thank you! I received the Chief Photographer award during our last year’s Christmas pub walk to North Crawley .

What were your 3 favourite walks and why? 

Snowdonia National Park: A hiking trip for three days with a group of energetic and lovely members of the walking society.  That experience showed how a team can work in a tough environment like climbing Snowdon Mountain.

Olney Christmas Market Walk: A walk that included passing by and seeing several attractive locations along the  River Great Ouse and Olney River Meadows  that are nature, the old market town and the Christmas market with a flavour of Victorian England.

Stevington Windmill Walk: A special walk to view an impressive postmill (a type of windmill that could be turned to face into the wind) built in the 18th century and the only complete windmill left in the county of Bedfordshire.  A historic windmill which is sort of  hidden, a stunning place to visit in Bedford.

What did being a member of Cranfield University’s Walks mean to you?

Being a member of this society gave me the opportunity to enjoy two things. Firstly, wondering around the beautiful countryside, villages and towns and knowing about their fascinating history. Secondly, I was honoured to work with and learn from the committee and our friends, Kristina and Alan, who all were driven by passion toward making this society lively and successful.

Why would you recommend anyone at Cranfield University to join the walking society? I don’t think I am exaggerating when I say that the Walking Society does complete the studying experience at Cranfield University, especially for international students like me so I strongly recommend it.

Thank you, Ali ! It was a pleasure talking to you. Keep on walking and all the best in your future endeavours!

Ali and fellow members of the walking society at Chicheley Hall.


Read further interviews with our members on our testimonials’ page.
Would you like to be part of the walking society?  Learn on how to join the Cranfield University’s Walks here

post by @CUwalker

Thinking of joining us? Meet our member Chen

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Since Cranfield University’s Walks formed in April 2011 many students participated in its activities, which enabled them to discover the UK’s extensive network of footpaths and enjoy and appreciate beauty of the UK’s countryside. If you are a new student coming to Cranfield University and thinking of joining, hear from our existing and past members about their experiences  of being part of the society:

Today I am talking to one of our most active members of past academic year. Hello there, tell us something about yourself. Hello I am Chen, a student in MSc Welding Engineering at SATM School, Cranfield University. Academic year 2016/2017.

Say hi to Chen, one of the walking society’s dedicated committee members. 

What was your role in the walking society? I was the Membership officer, responsible for collecting, processing membership sign up forms and maintaining the mailing list for upcoming events announcement. Occasionally I helped with the event planning and photo taking.

Congratulations! You have won an award from the walking society. Thank you! I received an award during our Christmas pub walk to North Crawley last year as the member who attended most walks between September and December 2016.

What were your 3 favourite walks and why? The first would be Snowdonia National Park, 3 days, 2 nights. It was the first ever big trip organised by the new committee and our first hand experience on the planning, paperwork and preparation that had to be done. With the event taking place 3 months from announcement in early summer for advance accommodation booking, the participation rate was relatively low as some students were uncertain about their schedule, concerned they would be writing up their theses back in their home countries during that period. Fortunately we managed to get both accommodation and participation ready with special arrangement even a month before departure. With none of the participants having visited the national park before nor being  professional hikers we all took precaution and hoped for the best. It turned out great! The path, the weather, the stunning view and a birthday celebration for the president, which fell on the same day. From this event, the committee gained major experience for the next.

The second would be Peak District National Park, 2 days 1 night. It was interesting. We lost our direction at the top because it was a vast landscape full of tall vegetation with hardly any visible sign or a path. Getting lost was fun and I enjoyed it, having a chance to explore the unknown and making important judgement along the way. Eventually we were back on track and rewarded with a nice view!

The third would be Willington Dovecote, now managed by National Trust. It was the first walk organised by the walking society for new students that I joined.  The walk from Great Barford along the Great River Ouse was led by Alan and Kristina. We began to know each other and ended the walk by shopping at the Go Outdoors shop. It is the first walk where it all started for me – and I caught the walking bug!

What walking boots and other walking gear do you have that you found indispensable during the walks? I didn’t place an importance into the walking gear initially. I had my first serious hiking of a 4000m altitude with industrial boots, partly because that was the pair I had and partly as I was curious  to find out what were the advantages of wearing such boots (steel toe cap and sole against rocks, mud proof , water proof, windproof and good traction against oily surface). It works but with low bending flexibility and stamina consuming. From there I learnt about the importance of getting a pair of suitable walking boots. As a fan of waterproof shoes (avoiding all chance of getting wet feet), I had a pair of Timberland boots for walking. It works well, even for daily use to classes. Wind proof jacket and pants are absolutely necessary too.

What did being a member of Cranfield University’s Walks mean to you?

Phew, it was full of surprises and passion! Coming from a hot city full of cars, highways and buildings (I am from Kuala Lumpur), walking in a shopping mall is the norm during weekend. One of my objective during my time spent in the UK is to have some nice outdoor walks and hiking. When I saw Walking Society booth during the club & society event, I joined as a member without much thought. As time passed, I was surprised to know that the society had closed for a year, was revived and ran with great passion by Kristina, the founder, for almost half a year before a full committee was formed. Rather than running away from being a committee, I have accepted Kristina’s offer to be the Membership officer in hope that I can contribute to some extent. Not long after, the president expressed his wish to resign came in as the next jaw dropping surprise, followed by the Snowdon trip at the brink of being scrapped due to low participation and high advance payment. Even so, the team remained resilient. Out of expectation, a quiet member stabilised the society by volunteering himself as the new president, flooding the society with his raging passion. The team sailed through all the hurdles one by one and things eventually back on track.

Finally, the last surprise arrived: the society was given the Best Event award 2016-2017 by Cranfield Student Association, returning to its past glory! I was genuinely stunned during the event as it was the least expected outcome right from revival. The best of all, it was a treat to know a group of very supportive members whom practise the same interest, having a nice chat and encounter during each walk. Not to forget, Kristina’s passion in the society is an eye opener for me. With the memorable year ended, I think the walk continues for all of us, both physically and mentally, exploring new paths and wonders. Hopefully someday we will cross each other’s path again.

Why would you recommend anyone at Cranfield University to join the walking society? Definitely join I would say to those who enjoy walking and photography! It is a wonderful chance to meet people with the same interest from different schools within the university and from different countries across the world.

Thank you, Chen, really enjoyed talking to you. Keep on walking and all the best in your future endeavours!

Read further interviews with our members on our testimonials’ page.
Would you like to be part of the walking society?  Learn on how to join the Cranfield University’s Walks here

post by @CUwalker

Sat 1st and Tuesday 4th October: Clubs and Societies Fair

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A very warm welcome to all new students arriving at Cranfield University!

This year Cranfield Students’ Association holds its annual fair in CSA   

Location: CSA, Building 114, Cranfield University, download campus map here.

  • on Saturday 1st October from 5 to 8pm and

  • on Tuesday 4th October from 5 to 7pm

The great news is that this year the award-winning society ‘Cranfield University’s Walks‘  is back!

Known for drawing a friendly crowd, the society had organised a range of walks, from strolls to North Crawley and Cranfield village to weekend hikes in Snowdonia and Lake District. Few pics from our amazing walks are included in this post; many taken by Cranfield students  and very talented photographers. See what our past members say and why is it good for you to walk!

Cranfield Students’ Association fair: Meet the walking society’s founding members,  renew your annual membership or  register with our student walking society for the very first time.

Join our walking society now by completing an online form.

Photos from previous club & societies fairs – photos  courtesy of Shiroshana Tissera and Sarah Bergin. Photos from previous walks @cranfielduniversityswalks. 

 

 

Ampthill – Golden hare Walk (Sun. 28/06/2015)

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On the 7th of August 1979, an artist buried a casket containing a golden hare (like a big rabbit) at a secret location within England. The artist announced that his forthcoming book contained all clues necessary to decode the treasure’s precise location “within a few inches.” At the time, the only additional clue he provided was that it was buried on public property that could be easily accessed.

The book sold hundreds of thousands of copies worldwide, many in the United Kingdom, but also in Australia, South Africa, West Germany, Japan (where the book was called 仮面舞踏会 kamenbutoukai), France and the United States. Searchers often dug up public and private property acting on hunches.

The picture is the first page in the puzzle book:

Join us as we follow to trail of the golden hare around the historic market town of Ampthill uncovering the mystery and scandal of the puzzle. This walk will also visit the ruins of Haughton house near Ampthill.

Activity date:
Sunday 28th June 2015
Meeting point:
The Café Bookshop (Cranfield University)
Departing time from Cranfield:
10:00
Arriving time to Cranfield (aprox):
15:00
Walk length (Km):
9.5 Km (6 miles)
Club members only?:
No
Sign up at:
Email walking@cranfield.ac.uk with “Golden hare” in the subject title
Sign-up deadline:
Friday 26th  June  by 1pm
Price:
£3 for members, £4 for non-members. If we have sufficient drivers this may be discounted.
Meal provided?:
No, bring snacks and water if you wish. If the weather is good we may have a picnic in the park afterwards.
Gear:
We will be walking on footpaths so normal footwear is ok however check the weather beforehand and be prepared accordingly.
Other information:
Drivers needed

Birds of Prey Centre (Saturday 21/03/2015)

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In previous walks we have gone to historical sites and natural parks, we’ve enjoyed the beautiful countryside of the UK, we’ve eaten lots of cake and even seen some concrete cows. Now it is time to enjoy another of the great natural attractions that England has to offer: its birds of prey.  You might have already seen some of them flying around without noticing them; maybe a Buzzard, a Barn Owl, a Harrier or a Red Kite. Maybe even a Golden Eagle, if you have been really lucky.

Barn       Red

If not, or if you have seen them but want to see more, this is the perfect opportunity for you as we will be walking to the Birds of Prey Centre in Wilstead. We will meet in front of the Café Bookshop and then grab the bus into Bedford, from where we will begin our walk following the John Bunyan Trail. We will go past Elstow and the huge Cardington Hangars before reaching our destination.

28/10/14 New GVs of Cardington Sheds

Does anyone know what was the use of these hangars? How about their current use? You might want to find out before the walk…

Once at the Birds of Prey Centre we will stop for lunch and watch an amazing display of their collection of animals. We will stay for some extra time so you can ask questions to the bird handlers and take a closer look at the birds as well. After this we will walk to a cosy pub in Cotton End where we can enjoy a drink before catching a taxi back into Bedford. For those aeronautic enthusiasts, we can extend the walk to get closer to the Cardington Hangars and take some awesome pictures.

Bell

Activity date:
Saturday 21st of  March
Meeting point:
The Café Bookshop (Cranfield University)
Departing time from Cranfield:
10:00
Arriving time to Cranfield (aprox):
17:00
Walk length (Km):
9.5 Km (6 miles)
Club members only?:
Limited to 10 walkers. Members will get priority. Spaces assigned in  the order they are requested.
Sign up at:
walking@cranfield.ac.uk (Subject: Rodrigo – Birds of Prey Centre)
Sign-up deadline:
Midday Friday 20th March
Price:
Free for members, £15 non-members (Cost of bus from Cranfield to Bedford not included)
Meal provided?:
Food is not included. Though there is a snack shop at the Birds of Prey Centre, we recommend you take a packed lunch.
Gear:
Warm, comfortable clothes and footwear (preferably hiking boots because the path may be muddy) and additional waterproof clothing in case it rains. Always carry some water with you.
Other information:
Remember to find out about the hangars…

Olney to Clifton Reynes via Weston Underwood (Saturday 28/02/2015)

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Join us in exploring the countryside around the village of Olney (9 miles north of Cranfield). To the west we will walk along an abandoned railway line to Weston Underwood, situated two miles south of Olney. Weston Underwood is a record winner for the best kept village in Buckinghamshire award. From there we will take a detour through Emberton Country Park, before heading back East along the River Great Ouse towards Clifton Reynes and the Robin Hood pub!

Activity date:
Saturday 28th February
Meeting point:
The Café Bookshop (Cranfield University)
Departing time from Cranfield:
10:30
Arriving time to Cranfield (aprox):
17:00
Walk length (Km):
12 Km (7 miles)
Club members only?:
No
Sign up at:
walking@cranfield.ac.uk (Subject: AMANDINE&AZIZ OLNEY WALK)
Sign-up deadline:
Midday Friday 27th February
Price:
£3 members, £5 non-members
Meal provided?:
Please ensure you bring a packed lunch.
Gear:
Warm, comfortable clothes and footwear (preferrably hiking boots because the path may be muddy) and additional waterproof clothing in case it rains. Always carry some water with you.
Other information:
DRIVERS WANTED! If you are willing to drive to Olney please let me know. Transportation costs will be reimbursed. Many thanks.

 

North Loughton Valley Park & Concrete cow brewery – (Saturday 21/02/14)

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concretecows

The theme this weekend is “concrete cows”. Join us for this walk where we will take a circular walk around North Loughton Valley park, passing by the partly restored Roman villa, the Bradwell windmill and of course the infamous concrete cows that Milton Keynes is known for.

lodge-lake

We will continue to Lodge lake, passing by the hills and hollows, a haven for wildlife (and maybe a grass snake or two) where you can attempt the “trim trail”, a series of exercise stations with ladder climbs, hurdles and leapfrogs.

trim-trail

Every attempted to make your own beer? Maybe tried the “cock and bull” or “watling gold” at the CSA? After the valley park we will be visiting the Concrete Cow Brewery for an introduction to the beer making process, along with a taster sessions and a gift pack of three ales normally retailing at £9

gift-pack-beer

 

Activity date:  Saturday 21st February
Meeting point:  The Café Bookshop (Cranfield University)
Departing time from Cranfield:  10:30
Arriving time to Cranfield (approx):  14:30
Walk length (Km):  6 Km (approx)
Club members only?:  No (but only 10 places)
Sign up at:  Email walking@cranfield.ac.uk with “Sarah – Concrete cow brewery” in the subject title
Sign-up deadline:  Friday 20th February at 1pm
Price:  £4 members £5 non members
Meal provided?:  No, bring a packed lunch or snacks
Gear:  Comfortable clothes and footwear, walk will be mostly paved path, gravel trail so shouldn’t be muddy or wet.
Other information:  As always if we could have one more driver that would be peachy!