A Walk Through History

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On the 1st July this year I will begin a personal journey that I have wanted to undertake for a very long time.  That is to walk the 110 miles of the Britain’s oldest path – the Icknield Way.

The path has origins that can be traced back at least to the Neolithic where it was thought to be a drovers route but it is  pre-date that and may have been used by Mesolithic hunter gatherers following deer migration routes.  Linked with Peddars Way in Norfolk and with the Ridgeway at the other end at Ivinghoe Beacon together they form a continuous prehistoric track that runs from the Wash on the East Coast to the South Coast diagonally across the country.

If the history of the Icknield way wasn’t enough of a draw in its self, then its link with my own family history certainly is.  My father lived in Icklingham and the path went past the end of his garden.  My formative years were spent watching and tracking wildlife on Tuddenham heath which the Icknield Way runs through.  When I was 9 we moved to Bedfordshire and  the path ran a few hundred metres away from my house and as a teenager I spent most of my weekends and school holidays at Whipsnade Zoo which borders the path.

As an adult my children all went to Icknield Lower School, right next to the path, sadly my late mother in law is laid to rest at the cemetery right next to the Way and for the last 10 years I have regularly walked my dogs along various sections of it.

So after walking most of it in stages over the last year, I have now decided to do it in one go over three or four days……..25-30 miles a day.  In line with my Primal lifestyle I will be walking the whole route in minimal barefoot shoes kindly provided by Freet Footwear and I will walk each day in a fasted state and consume only low carb paleo/primal meals at the end of each day.

Walking this is a personal journey for myself but it is also an opportunity to  raise some well needed funds for charity.  I have chosen to support the World Owl Trust, an owl conservation organisation help raise some funds towards building their new Owl Centre in Staffordshire.  They do sterling work both in the UK and overseas and have had a turbulent few years after loosing their original centre in Cumbria.

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