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New weekly ‘Health Walk’ starting at Thorncombe Wood

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A new weekly Health Walk is set to start this month at Thorncombe Wood Local Nature Reserve near Dorchester.

This free, guided walk is part of the Dorset Health Walks initiative, and is designed for people who would like to get more active in a sociable setting.

Key details:

  • Launch Date: Friday 19th April
  • Time: 10 to 11 am
  • Frequency: Every Friday throughout the year
  • Meeting Point: Hardy’s Birthplace Visitor Centre

The walk lasts an hour, beginning and ending at the Hardy’s Birthplace Visitor Centre.

Specially trained volunteer health walk leaders will be on hand to welcome walkers and guide them through the enchanting paths of the nature reserve.   Some of these paths can be uneven and hilly in parts, so walkers should be prepared for and capable of navigating this type of terrain.

Claire Platten, Dorset Council’s Countryside Ranger at Thorncombe Wood, said:

“From scheduled ancient monuments to literary connections, this magical pocket of woodland at Thorncombe is steeped in heritage and full to the brim with wildlife, plants, and trees.

“A health walk here will exercise your body, your mind, and your wellbeing.  And is an excellent opportunity to connect with nature.”

No booking is needed, simply arrive on the day to join the walk.  The walk is free, but car park charges do apply.

Walkers are asked to complete a Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire ahead of the walk.  This can be done online by visiting the Dorset Council website or over the phone by calling 01425 480811.

For more information on Health Walks or to discover other walks in the area, visit the Dorset Council website or reach out to our Health & Activity Team at

path weaves through wooded area