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iFootpath Expert: Why our Pub Walks are Win Win Win

In this latest instalment of the iFootpath Expert series, we explain how we develop pub walks for the iFootpath App and why, by using them, you are helping more people than you might think. It’s the perfect excuse for a walk followed by a well-deserved pint…


Within the 1000+ iFootpath walking guides across the UK, you may have noticed that there are more than 150 pub walks, each starting and finishing at a hostelry (or cafe). You can find all our pub walks by selecting the Pub or Cafe item from the drop-down menu called Collections within the search function of the website or App.

pubwalk search

Taking a pub walk has been a classic British pastime for years and no wonder, what could be better than a pub at the end of a walk? It gives you chance for a well-earned warm by the fire in winter or a shady garden spot in the summer, with a refreshing drink or a well-deserved meal.

The pub walks on iFootpath are special in several ways. You will see that they include the name of the pub in the title, and that confirms the pub itself has asked for the walk to be included on iFootpath. That means you can be sure that they will happily welcome walkers (even if you have some mud up your trousers!) and lots of them also welcome dogs.

It also means that you are more than welcome to park at the pub while you follow the walk (with no need to check with the landlord first). There’s no pressure for you to buy a banquet at the end of your walk, although it would be courteous to pop in for a quick drink at least. If you fancy a sandwich or lunch, then even better. You are sure to get a great meal with a very warm welcome.

All pubs that commission an iFootpath walk make a contribution to the technology costs of running iFootpath – that’s one of the reasons that we are able to keep the App so affordable for walkers themselves. By following these walks and popping in to the pub afterwards, you are actually helping to ensure the continued life of the iFootpath App.

Many country pubs and cafes have struggled to survive over the last couple of decades and sadly many have closed their doors for good. This leaves some villages without a community hub which seems such a shame. By supporting the pubs and cafes that have commissioned an iFootpath walk, you are also helping to secure the future of the pubs and cafes themselves, and so helping the local communities. Several of the pubs organise group walks following the iFootpath route a few times per year, it’s a great way to meet new people and if you’re lucky, you might even get a bacon sandwich on the house.

BP walk and bacon sandwiches

Some of the pubs and cafes are community-run affairs, staffed by teams of volunteers, or small independent ventures. Take, for example, Slindon Forge within the South Downs National Park in West Sussex. This community shop and cafe, based in the old village forge, is run as a not-for-profit initiative. It offers vital services to the local community (such as phone top-ups, utility bill payments, wi-fi and even dry cleaning). By following any one of the four Slindon Forge iFootpath walks and dropping in for a cup of coffee, you will be doing your bit to ensure the continued success of this valuable local hub.


If you want to contact the pub or cafe before or during your walk (maybe to check opening times or book a table), then the iFootpath App has that bit covered too. Click on the Pub Banner on the Walk Overview page and you will be given three buttons. The Call button will automatically dial the pub phone number for you, so you can get in touch – simple!

pub walk banner sequence

That’s all for this article. Head out and enjoy an iFootpath pub walk, pop into the pub (or cafe) afterwards for some refreshments and you can have a warm glow inside (and not just from the roaring real fire!).

26 February 2018

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The length of our walking guides is given in miles and rounded to the nearest full mile (whole number) for simplicity. For short walks (of less than 2 miles) or walks that have a length that ends in .5, a more accurate walk length may be given in the first section of the walk introduction. For example, the Length in the header may be listed as 6 miles, and the introduction may confirm that the exact length of the walk is 5.5 miles. The walk length is calculated from the GPS file that was created by the walk author GPS tracking the walk whilst walking, using the iFootpath App GPS Tracker, meaning it is very accurate. Our bespoke tracker is particularly detailed and plots a walkers position about every 10 seconds. The tracker is calibrated to match two other reputable map and walking sources, Ordnance Survey and Nike. As with all standardised walk and map lengths, the distance does not take account of hills and slopes, just the distance you would measure using a piece of string on a flat map version of the terrain, so hilly walks will feel longer than stated. If you track the route using another GPS App or Tracker App or Fitness Device, you can expect the distance you record to be different due to different calibrations. This is particularly true of those Apps and devices that count your motion and steps – these can only guess the distance you have travelled with each step and so are much less accurate.

Grade (Boots)

The grade of a walk is an indicator of how difficult the terrain is that you will encounter along the way. This does not take into account the walk length but does suggest how challenging the walk will be. It takes into account things like hills, path surfaces and obstacles (like stiles, gates, steps and rock scrambles). An easy walk, graded as 1 (and shown as 1 Boot) indicates a walk that is essentially flat, has no sharp hills to climb, has no stiles, is easy to navigate (probably along a well-worn path) and is suitable for most levels of fitness. A difficult walk, graded as 5 (and represented by 5 Boots) indicates a walk that is strenuous and involves steep ascents and/or descents. It may be technically challenging involving difficult terrain or obstacles that require scrambling with your hands. Please note that the grading for walks is subjective and open to interpretation and should only be used as a guide when selecting a walk.

NOTE: Do be aware that the level of stamina required for any walk will vary depending on both the walk length and the difficulty grade - you should only walk within your limits.

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