Who are our members?
The Comberton Ramblers are a diverse group from all walks of life, including both those still working and those retired. We are people who enjoy the countryside and social interaction. We welcome people of all ages on our walks and those under 18 do not have to pay the membership fee. On virtually all our walks you’ll find both single people and couples.
How much does it cost to join the Comberton Ramblers?
If you decide to join our annual membership fee is currently set at £8.50, payable at the start of September. You can pay by cash or cheque to the Club Secretary or by bank transfer (Club account details emailed to members). We suggest that before joining you do a couple of walks to see if you like what we offer. We suggest that before joining you do a couple of walks to see if you like what we offer.
What walks does the Club offer?
There are two core programmes of walks (ranging from 4-6 miles) organised by the Club Committee each year with the walks timetabled for every second Sunday. The Autumn Programme runs from September to December, and the Spring Programme from January to July). In addition we run two or more slightly shorter evening walks in August and we have recently started to add some further occasional walks that are timetabled for dates outside the two core programmes.
How are walks organised?
Each walk will have two leaders who will have done the walk beforehand. They will therefore know how to find their way around the route and will have identified and addressed any potential issues along the route. They are in charge of that walk and they will take any decision necessary to ensure the safety of the walk. One of the leaders will walk at the front guiding the group whilst the other will be at the back ensuring that the group keeps together and that no-one gets left behind.
If I join the Club will I be expected to lead walks?
No, you will not be automatically expected to lead walks, but if you do, in time, wish to lead a walk we would be very supportive as it broadens your experience of walking in the countryside and spreads the load of leading walks across more members. We can offer you ideas for walks and pair you with a more experienced work leader on the walk you choose. Leading walks does take up a certain amount of time in establishing a route, walking it at least once to check out both the route and the lunch venue and then leading the group on the day. It is good to spread that workload across the Club membership and we are fortunate that many of our members are now experienced and enthusiastic walk leaders.
I might not come on more than a few walks per year. Does this matter?
No, as this sounds like the predicament of many members; many of us lead busy lives. There is no minimum or maximum requirement for attending walks and no explanations needed if you have long gaps between coming out with us.
What sort of clothing should I wear ?
Dress for the conditions and remember that conditions can change over the course of a walk. If the walk leader does not consider your clothing/boots appropriate for the walking conditions they can refuse to allow you on the walk. We would recommend good comfortable walking boots, clothing in layers so that you can put more on or take layers off to keep you comfortably warm, a waterproof jacket and over-trousers; on colder days, gloves, hat and a scarf are a good idea.
What else should I bring on a walk?
You will need a day sack to carry spare clothing (and possibly a camera and/or binoculars). We usually stop briefly around half way on a walk, so members will bring water/soft drinks/snack bars/fruit. In hot weather a water container is valuable whilst, in winter, some bring a hot drink in a thermos. On the rare occasion we do not finish at a pub/cafe then a packed lunch would be useful. We often take lunch at the Pub/cafe at the end of the walk but there is no requirement to do so.
Should I bring my own first aid kit?
Yes please bring your own medical and first aid supplies, as the walk leader does not provide these for the group. It is extremely rare for anyone to need first aid but it pays to put some items in your kit so that you are prepared.
Are the walks only within Cambridgeshire
No. Whilst we are a Cambridgeshire based group we also have the beautiful countryside of Suffolk, Essex, Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire in easy reach and we intend to walk in all of it!
Do you ever cancel walks?
Hardly ever. It could happen if the leader is indisposed and no substitute person is available to lead that walk. Even when it is snowing or pouring with rain our walks usually go ahead, Only one walk in 2018 was cancelled, due to heavy snow, and none were cancelled in 2019. We will email all members to inform them if there is a last minute cancellation.
Do I need to be able to read a map?
No. Each walk is led by two walk leaders who will guide you along the walk. Some walkers do bring a GPS or a smartphone based mapping programme, for their own interest, so that they can follow the route on a digital map as they walk or record it so that they can re-walk it another time.
Do I need to be super fit?
No. We offering fairly easy half day strolls rather than energetic hikes. Nevertheless if you are wanting to get fit you may find this more fun and cheaper than joining a gym. If you have a medical condition you should inform the walk leader aware so that they are aware of any potential problem during the walk. Individuals are responsible for their own safety, but the walk leaders are responsible for the group and it is their decision as to whether someone with a medical condition be allowed to start the walk.
What should I do if I am taken ill on a walk
Tell the leader as soon as possible and usually the advice would be to leave the walk and return home. It always pays to come on a walk prepared with a mobile phone and contact details for a friend or relative that you or the walk leader can contact to collect you. The leader and the group will be supportive in ensuring you can leave the walk safely. If necessary they will endeavour to get you back to the start point and your vehicle or will arrange for medical assistance to be sought. If you feel unwell at the start of a walk the best advice is to give it a miss.
What if I injure myself on a walk?
Comberton Ramblers can accept no responsibility for illness or injury of participants. You walk with us at your own risk. This is consistent with the policies of the Ramblers Association and other walking groups. If you are unable to continue the walk leaders will help in arranging that you get to a place of safety or medical assistance.
What happens if I want to leave the walk?
You are free to leave a walk but make sure that you inform the walk leaders before you leave as we count everyone out and everyone back! They will endeavour to provide information on how you get back to the start of the walk.
Do you provide lifts to walk starting points?
Some drivers may volunteer to offer their cars for car sharing to certain of our walks once they get to know you.
Can I bring my dog on a walk?
We do not currently allow dogs (except for Assistance Dogs) on our walks. However many other walking groups in the area do allow dogs on their walks so there are plenty of opportunities beyond our Club for those who like to walk with their four-legged friends.