Broadcaster Stuart Maconie has been appointed the Ramblers' president

Broadcaster Stuart Maconie has been appointed the Ramblers' president

Britain’s largest walkers’ charity has a new president.

Broadcaster and outdoors enthusiast Stuart Maconie was announced as the honorary head of the Ramblers at the organisation’s annual meeting.

Maconie hosts a weekday show on BBC6 Music along with Mark Radcliffe, and he also made an appearance tackling Sharp Edge in Terry Abraham’s 2016 film Blencathra: Life of a Mountain.

He has summited all 214 Wainwright fells in the Lake District and is also author of books including The Pie At Night: In Search of the North at Play and Never Mind the Quantocks.

He was elected to the post at the Ramblers gathering in Southampton, where members discussed matters affecting walkers and the great outdoors.

He said: “I am honoured and delighted to have been asked to be president of the Ramblers. It is not just a prestigious position, but one that will allow me to share some of my views, enthusiasms and passions with regard to our enjoyment of the outdoors.

“Like the originators of the movement and the organisation, I am a son of the industrial north and I both value and love the tranquillity, uplift and adventure of walking in our beautiful country and also appreciated that our rights to enjoy it have been hard won and are never to be taken for granted.

“I hope to add my voice to those who seek to ensure the birthright that is free access to our open hills, moors, downs and wherever we put one foot in front of another for recreation.”

Maconie developed a love for walking during his time as deputy editor of the New Musical Express, when he found walking to be an antidote to a busy life. Since then, he’s walked the Wainwrights, completed the Hadrian’s Wall Path national trail and walked much of the South West Coast Path.

Chief executive of the Ramblers Vanessa Griffiths said: “We are delighted that Stuart has been elected as our president. He is truly passionate about walking and walkers’ rights and we think he will be a great champion, not just for the Ramblers, but for walkers everywhere.”

The broadcaster said he hopes to use his presidency to encourage more people to enjoy the outdoors and get involved in protecting people’s rights to access the countryside.

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