A ROUTE through some of the finest North East landscapes has been voted the best walking trail in Britain.
Hadrian’s Wall Path national trail, an 84-mile trail from Wallsend on Tyneside through Northumberland to Bowness- on-Solway in Cumbria, won the honour in the first-ever BBC Countryfile Magazine Awards.
A total of 10,600 people walked the trail end to end last year, taking around seven days to complete it. Thousands more took shorter walks around Roman sites off the trail.
David McGlade, Hadrian’s Wall Heritage national trail manager said: “This award is a tribute to the vision, effort and encouragement of many people, over many years, from staff in the field and our trail volunteers, to our consultants at Oxford Archaeology North, local authorities and Natural England.
“It’s thanks to them that we have today’s long-term conservation management approach. Witness the world heritage site’s condition today, better than at any time in the past 20 years.
“Hadrian’s Wall Path is unique. No other trail provides for such extensive access to an archaeologically sensitive landscape and it is vital that we not only manage and protect it for the present but also for future generations.”
Fergus Collins, editor of Countryfile Magazine, said: “This is the perfect week-long exploration – every step along Hadrian’s Wall takes you deeper into the Roman world, and through some of the most enchanting landscapes Britain has to offer.”
Linda Tuttiett, chief executive of Hadrian’s Wall Heritage said: “We are passionate about all that Hadrian’s Wall Country has to offer and we’re thrilled that Countryfile Magazine readers share that passion. We hope that as a result of this accolade, more people will come and explore the trail and range of associated circular walking routes and discover this region’s extraordinary heritage.”
Alnwick won the best market town category while the Northern England Red Squirrel conservation project won conservation project of the year.
Northumberland National Park came third in the favourite national park category, and Belsay House and Gardens came second in the finest garden category.