January 2018

Click here to download the newsletter as a printable PDF

Hello and Happy New Year to all our members. 2018 is a special year for us, as it is the club’s 80th birthday year. Let’s make it a good one! Much has changed since 1938, from heavy tweed and canvas to ultralight wicking fabrics and GoreTex, and from handwritten records in elegant copper-plate script to electronic newsletters, but the joy of walking in the Devon countryside remains much the same. Later in this newsletter you’ll find a ‘Tales from the club archive’ section.

We currently have 52 subscription-paying members, plus 5 lifetime members. There’s always room for more, so do promote our club whenever you can and invite any of your friends, family members, colleagues and acquaintances to sample our walks

Spring walking programme
Along with this newsletter you will find a new programme for the period February – April 2018, with a good selection of Sunday walks, both long and short, and Thursday walks to include lunch out. As always, many thanks to Katherine for all her efforts.

Annual General Meeting: 25th February 2018
Accompanying this newsletter you will find the statutory notice regarding our AGM 2018. This will be held on Sunday 25th February, once again at the excellent Padbrook Park in Cullompton, and we hope to see as many of you as possible there, especially those whom we no longer see on Sunday walks. Our speaker will be from the Dartmoor Search and Rescue Team; there will be a collection afterwards, so please bring some loose change.

The 3-course lunch is the same price as last year. Don’t forget to make your menu choices and return your booking slip to Pete in good time. You can download a copy here.

Once again, there’ll be a Bring and Buy table to raise funds for the club, so do please bring along anything you think may be saleable. We especially welcome donations of home-made produce and crafts, plus any walking or outdoor gear (new or in good used condition), maps, books and unwanted gifts. Why leave them to clutter up your cupboards and drawers when they can find a new owner and get a whole new lease of life. Just bring them along on the day.

Photographers: please bring your favourite photos for the pin board. As last year, there will be a chance to share your best shots taken on club walks during the past year. We look forward to seeing pictures of club members enjoying themselves, classic landscape shots and anything unusual or humorous. If possible, please provide details of when you took the picture and where.

Tales from the club archive
The inaugural meeting of the Exeter Rambling Club was held on the 15th March 1938 at Messrs Hammett’s Dairies Ltd., St Sidwell Street, Exeter. There were thirty-three members present, and an Express & Echo Staff Reporter. Mr A.O. Rowden presided and opened the meeting with an interesting talk on Rambling. It was decided to hold Rambles on Saturday afternoons and Sundays. Mr Rowden offered to lead the first walk, which was fixed for Sunday 20th March 1938 at 2.30 from Burnthouse Lane, the route being as follows:- via Northbrook Park, Topsham, Clyst St George, Clyst St Mary, across the meadows to Sowton and back into Exeter.

Exhibition: Dartmoor, a Wild and Wondrous Region
There is currently an exhibition at the Royal Albert Memorial Museum in Exeter featuring the portrayal of Dartmoor in art from the late 18th to early 20th centuries. It is fascinating and tells the story of the discovery of Dartmoor by landscape artists in the late 18th century and how this sparked a boom in tourism, at a time when the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars were making the Grand Tour and travel to Europe impossible. There are works by Turner, William and FJ Widgery and many others, and they range from huge oil paintings to intricate pencil sketches, water colours and early photographs. The exhibition runs until the 31st March 2018 and entrance is free.

“The summits of several of the higher swells of Dartmoor are truly savage, and rendered finely picturesque by reason of immense piles of stones, or huge fragments of rock, thrown confusedly together in the most grotesque manner.”
Arthur Marshall, The Rural Economy of the West of England, 1796.

Favourite recipe: Savoury Flapjacks
Everybody knows and loves the sweet flapjack, but have you tried this wonderful cheesy version? They make a great addition to your hiking lunchbox or an exceedingly tasty snack at any time.

2 oz butter, melted
5 oz porridge oats
4 oz chopped nuts (any kind you fancy – I like to use a mix of peanuts and pecans, with some sunflower seeds thrown in too)
I large carrot, grated
6 oz mature cheddar cheese, grated
Pinch of dried mixed herbs
1 beaten egg
Salt and pepper to taste (not too much if using salted peanuts).

Mix everything in a large bowl. Press into a greased baking tin (8” square or 11 x 7” oblong). Bake at Gas 4/180o C for 25 mins until set and golden.
Cut into squares while still warm, then allow to cool in the tin. They freeze well in individually wrapped portions and are equally good eaten cold or warm.

A reminder about our club supporters
If you are booking a Ramblers Holiday, please consider nominating our club for a donation from The Walking Partnership. This scheme gives direct financial support to local walking clubs. Each time a club member books a UK, European or worldwide holiday with Ramblers Holidays, the club will receive a contribution. In order for us to receive this, you must nominate our group at the time of booking, so look out for the logo and web link.

Would you like to contribute an item of news or advertise an event in a future newsletter? Please give any suggestions or contributions to Janet or Christabel.

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