Visits inspire Richard to compile walking guide
By David Wibberley - Reporter
AFTER visiting Teesdale three years ago for the first time, keen walker Richard Acland was inspired to put pen to paper to create his own walking guide, which was published last week.
Mr Acland, a retired marketing executive, from Hitchen, Hertfordshire, said he was so taken with Teesdale, he has not only decided to move here, he compiled a book detailing some of the challenging routes he has discovered and enjoyed.
Such a Tees, Walking the High Fells of Upper Teesdale, has been printed by Barnard Castle-based Print Display, and features original pen and ink illustrations by Mr Acland’s best friend Sharon Freedman.
He said: “I first came to the area about three years ago when I was doing the Pennine Way. I was really taken with it. I really thought it was a nice place and I found myself coming back, a lot.”
Mr Acland says he is also in the process of moving to Barnard Castle and hopes to be resident within several months.
The idea for the book came after he started jotting down the walks he explored in Teesdale and with a little encouragement from Ms Freedman, he decided to put them together into a walking guide.
He added: “I was fascinated by the fact a lot of the higher hills are not openly walking routes and decided to look at walking above the watershed.
“When you are in the valley you don’t appreciate just how big the area is, but once you get up on a plateau you can see so much.
“There is a lot of tramping through difficult terrain, but it provides excellent views and you can really appreciate the landscape,” he added.
“Although I have written the walk as a circuitous route, which at 50 miles is quite challenging, it is broken down into stages.
“You could take the ultimate challenge and tackle the circuit in one go, or walk it over three days, which would still be very challenging. But I have also put it in 13 day stage walks as well.”
The book has maps, colour photographs and artist illustrations of some of the key points on the walks and is available to purchase from the Teesdale Mercury shop priced at £7.95.