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Southwark is a wonderful place to walk. And what better way to get around than one that is sociable and free? Whether you're a motivated walker, or need a little extra encouragement, the aim of this information is to encourage you to spend more time on your feet exploring Southwark.

Whether you fancy a stroll in the park, a walk to work, or a full day on your feet there are plenty of options. Take a look at the map below to find a walk in Southwark - going for a local walk really is as simple as putting one foot in front of the other.

You can also download the full screen map.

Walking facts and advice

Incorporating walking into your daily routine is simple and there are some really positive personal benefits of doing so. Besides being great for overall health and wellbeing, walking reduces the cost of your travel, is better for the environment than mechanized transport, and more people traveling on foot is shown to give economic benefits to local communities. Change4Life has lots of simple ideas and tips to help you easily incorporate walking into your daily routine. 

 The Health Benefits of Walking

If you walk at a moderate pace, (like you're late for an appointment) walking becomes a great form of aerobic exercise - without the stress you put on your joints when jogging or running. Cardiovascular activity that increases your heart rate - like walking - is good for your heart and lungs, for improving muscle tone and reducing body fat. Regular walking can reduce the risk of diseases such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease, and because walking increases bone density it can lower the risk of osteoporosis too. Besides this, walking is excellent for relieving stress, helping you sleep better and improving your mood.

You can learn more about the benefits of walking to your health on the NHS Live well website or the walking for health website.

Motivation to Move

Walking burns about 100 calories a mile, depending on your age, weight and pace. Health experts tell us we should aim to walk 10,000 steps a day in total or for 30 minutes a day. Walking in a group is another great way to start walking and to stay motivated. You'll make friends and discover new places in your neighbourhood.

Every step counts – a walking programme for starters

  Like the idea of getting more active through walking but need a bit of support and encouragement to get you started?

Are you part of a community or health-related group or other local organisation in Southwark, with others who feel the same way as you about exercise?

If the answer to both these questions is YES, please contact George Redmayne at the Ramblers (tel: 020 7339 8564, email: george.redmayne@ramblers.org.uk).

Working closely with the local Walking for Health Scheme, from now until 31st March 2015 George will be coordinating 12-week walking programmes to help the most inactive people in Southwark get more active through walking but at your own pace, in a fun and sociable way, in your local area and with lots of support.

Every step counts is a Ramblers project funded by the Big Lottery Fund through the Active Travel Consortium of leading walking, cycling and health organisations, and supported by local councils, Walking for Health schemes and Macmillan Cancer Support.




CoolWalks - public walks in Southwark for health and wellbeing

CoolWalks are being developed by the local community around each of the borough's libraries to promote walking as a healthy activity at the same time as meeting new people and learning about the local area. The project is being facilitiated by Cooltan Arts in conjunction with libraries and public health.

Here are the first seven walks, each with a different theme for you to download from the tab at the top right and explore for yourself.

Architecture and Industry in Docklands - Discover the Docklands area around Canada Water. This walk will focus on the history of industry in the Docklands, which was at one time the world's largest port, as well as the area's architecture, including an unusual vent and escape shaft built for the Jubilee Line. Start : Canada Water Library

Film Locations in Borough - Explore film locations in Borough including Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, and Harry Potter.  The Globe Pub which is featured on Bridget Jone's diary is featured on the walk. Start : John Harvard Library

Regeneration in Walworth - Explore the changing land use in Walworth and Kennington including Victorian and modern social housing, the regeneration of Burgess Park and the artists' workshops of Lliffe Yard. Start: East Street Library

Eccentric Dulwich - Explore Dulwich and it's unusual characters and architecture including Dulwich College, Dulwich Picture Gallery, the oldest purpose-built art gallery in the world and Herne Hill velodrome. Start : Dulwich Library

Myths, Legends and Tall Tales in Nunhead - Visit the beautiful Gothic cemetery, a Worl War One gun emplacement and the Honor Oak at One Tree Hill where it is alleged Queen Elizabeth I used to picnic. Start : Nunhead Library

Flora and Fauna in Dulwich, Sydenham and Crystal Palace - Discover an abundance of greenery through the woods and parks in the South of the borough, including some life size dinosaurs! Start : Kingswood Library

To find out more and get involved in future walks developments visit the Cooltan Arts website .  For more information on CoolWalks please contact Georgina Rogers - 020 7701 2696.

Literature and Green Spaces in Peckham - Discover Peckham and explore the area's green spaces and links to literature. Visit the site of William Blake's vision on Peckham Rye; locations that have inspired poetry; places featured in Muriel Spark's 'The Ballad of Peckham Rye' and the area's hidden green spaces. Start : Peckham Library

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