Training & Route
How long will it take me to walk 20 miles?
It depends on your walking speed. On average it takes around 7-8 hours, however in the past some walkers have finished by 3pm, others after 6pm. We’d recommend a couple shorter practise walks to determine your walking speed.
Can I run the route?
You are welcome to run the route but ask that you are considerate to walkers, especially along the canal towpaths.
How can I train for the challenge?
A good idea is to go out 2-3 times a week, slowly up the distance that you cover and vary your terrain so you’re prepared for the hilly sections of the walk. Start with 5 miles around your local area and increase the distance in 2-mile increments. You could always pick a circular walk and repeat to ensure you can up the mileage while staying safe.
Apps like ViewRanger (free) All Trails (Free version) or OSMaps (paid) have a huge breadth of local walks you can follow. Just pick and download one. Make sure to tell someone where you are going and use the App What3Words if you need emergency assistance. Keep upping those miles and get those legs pumping ready for the day.
Where are the big hills on the route?
The route is really varied and is very hilly in parts. The main large hills are:
1. Little Solsbury Hill located between Kingswood Pavilion and George Inn checkpoints
2. The hill ascending to Kingswood Pavillion checkpoint from Wooley (Steep ascent if walking anti-clockwise)
3. Hill up to Lansdown (Between Newbridge P&R and Kingswood Pavilion checkpoints) (Steep ascent if walking clockwise)
Which route is best for families with young children?
The canal path between Bathampton and Limpley stoke is buggy friendly. All routes suitable for families (without buggies) depending on fitness.
How long will each section take me?
Please see our map here which has timings between each checkpoint.
What do I need to bring & wear?
- Hiking boots or sturdy walking shoes. If you’re running the route, make sure you have suitable trail running footwear,
- Good walking socks, these will help prevent blisters and prevent your feet from over sweating,
- Blister plasters, just in case
- Water bottles (2 litres at least)
- Packed lunch & lots of snacks (good walking snacks include nuts, dried fruit, cereal bars etc)
- Extra layers like a fleece, hats, gloves (the weather can quickly change)
- Waterproofs (especially a coat)
- Sunglasses & sunscreen (sun hat if weather looing particularly warm)
- Fully charged mobile phone
- Cash /card to buy coffee & snacks on route
- Camera for those awesome view
Are the route directions available before the event?
The route directions are printed on waterproof paper. Due to the fact that we check the route as close to the event as possible, unfortunately there isn’t time to post instructions out to participants.
Which checkpoint should I start at and should I walk clockwise or anti-clockwise?
Can I sign up on the day?
No. The deadline for signing up is midday on Friday 23rd September. There will be no entries on the day.
Are there any toilets and water?
There are water refills at all checkpoints. However, please ensure you bring plenty of water with you. There are free toilets at all of the checkpoints, apart from the toilets at Newbridge Park and Ride which are council run and cost 20p to enter. Please bring a few 20ps with you if you are passing this checkpoint.
Are there any coffee stops?
There will be coffee stops en route. At the Angelfish at the canal centre, and a coffee van at Kingswood Pavilion. The local community will also be hosting tea and cake stands en route at Woolley, near the Church, at Southstoke, near the church and at Oldfield Secondary School. Please bring cash to support them. The profits will be split between Julian House and the community projects.
Where can I stop for lunch?
If you’re walking the full 20 mile route, we recommend taking a packed lunch. However, if you do wish to stop there are several pub options on route including Bathampton Mill, The George, the Packhorse in Southstoke, Hope & Anchor and The Angelfish cafe. Please check their websites to see if they are open on the day and if you need to place a booking in advance.
Is there parking at the checkpoints?
Parking is free at Kingswood Sports Pavilion (closes 18:30), Newbridge P&R and St Gregory School Sixth Form Centre. Parking at the Canal Visitor Centre is £6.50 all day (card and cash accepted).
George Inn at Bathampton has free parking for a maximum 3hrs (best for drop-off/pick up), or limited parking if you register your car registration inside the pub.
Alternatively there will be additional parking at the King Edward’s Sports Ground in Bathampton.
How often does the shuttle service run?
A copy of the shuttle service timetable will be emailed to you and uploaded to our website closer to the event, allowing you to plan your day.
Is my dog allowed on the shuttle service?
Yes, but must be kept on a lead and not on the seats.
Fundraising + Help us promote the event
How can I raise sponsorship?
The easiest way to collect sponsorship is by setting up a Just Giving page. After you’ve set up your page, it’s time to start promoting your challenge to family/friends/colleagues and potential sponsors. See our fundraising tips which offers advise on how to do this. Contact your local press, make a video appeal for your social media or start ringing around – all great ways to promote and maximise your sponsorship for Julian House.
Alternatively, you can collect sponsorship via our Paper Sponsorship Forms, please contact us for this.
What do I do with my sponsorship money?
Money raised via an online fundraising page comes directly to us. So, there’s no need to do anything. Any money raised offline can be sent with your sponsorship form to Julian House, 55 New King Street, Bath, BA1 2BN. Alternatively you can do a direct bank transfer. Please contact us for our bank details.
Can I have some posters to put up at my local school, workplace etc?
Yes absolutely, please contact us here with how many posters you need and where you plan to put them.
I would like to donate instead
If you would like to donate instead of raising sponsorship, please donate via our Just Giving page here. On average, participants donate between £80-120. Please donate what you can to help us support vulnerable and at-risk people.