Happy Birthday Offa’s Dyke Path National Trail
It’s 40 years since walkers started to explore the natural wonders along Wales’ borderland, by walking Offa’s Dyke Path National Trail. The Offa’s Dyke National Trail, stretching for 177 miles, from Prestatyn on the north Wales coast to Chepstow in the south, is recognised as a first class attraction. It is enjoyed by thousands of visitors from all over the world and many local walkers too. In partnership with local landowners, the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) and the local authorities through which the path runs, have ensured that the whole path is well-defined and clearly waymarked. Crucially, many sections now offer easy walking for people of all levels of ability. The Trail is one of the key foundations of tourism on the Welsh/English border; local B&Bs, pubs and shops are among some of the businesses that benefit from Trail walkers. And it’s not just the economy that benefits. Walking is really good for you - physical activity can reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes. Morgan Parry, CCW Chairman, said, “As we celebrate the Trail’s 40th birthday, we also look forward to continuing to develop and manage this National Trail as one of Wales’ most important assets in terms of giving people the best opportunities to enjoy the countryside, with all the health and economic benefits that come with that.” Offa’s Dyke Path, based on a man-made historical landscape feature, passes across the Wales/England border a number of times. The history you can see along the way tells a story of the conflicts that have taken place in this border country. The dyke itself is visible for around half of the Trail, rising to 25 feet high in some places and almost disappearing in others. There is much speculation about the true historic origins of the dyke but there is general agreement that it was likely to have been a defensive structure. For more information about enjoying the Offa’s Dyke Path National Trail, go to www.nationaltrail.co.uk/OffasDyke.