"Beating the Bounds"

 Sunday 29th April 2018

Hot on the heels of last years’ successful Big Valley Ramble, the Blackwater Valley Countryside Trust invites you to join us on our popular annual event with a difference. Organised by the Trust with help from Yateley Town Council and local groups, you will be walking 11 miles through some of the Valley’s less known neighbouring countryside, ‘Beating the Bounds’ of Yateley Parish with the Trust and the Yateley Town Mayor, Tony Spencer.

Since Saxon times, Yateley folk were required to confirm the boundary of the Parish by beating their way around every year. The last times Yateley Beat the Bounds was in 1902 and 1890!

Help re-establish this historic ritual by joining our walk, whilst also raising money for two deserving local causes. The Blackwater Valley Countryside Trust and the Mayor's Annual Charity, Yelabus.  The Trust promotes and undertakes conservation in the Blackwater Valley, while Yelabus provides community transport in the Yateley area, specialising in the elderly and less able.

Event Details

You will be able to choose a start time from 9 -11 a.m. when booking.

The walk starts at the Darby Green Centre and takes a circular route of just over 11 miles round the parish boundary, uncovering hidden gems and historical traditions.  You’ll be able to select your start time and will be able to walk at your own pace, although there will be a walk leader, back marker and marshals, all wearing high visibility jackets. 

You will be guided round some of the less well known, but surprisingly beautiful, parts of Yateley, Frogmore and Darby Green, through fields, woods, heathlands and waterways and along some of the Blackwater Valley path. Children are welcome, if accompanied by adults.

Entry fee

There is an entry fee of £10 per walker over 16 years of age, under 16s go free. Your entry fee will support the Trust and its work and we thank you for taking part.


You may also wish be sponsored to participate in this event - this is optional.  Money collected through sponsorship will support the Yelabus Service.  Sponsorship forms are available from Yateley Town Council.


Please book by clicking on the event which matches your preferred start time. Before you click on the Booking icon you will need:

  • Contact name and details for all walkers
  • Mobile phone numbers for use on the day
  • Emergency contact numbers for all walkers
  • A Credit / Debit card for payment.


Parking will be available at the start of the walk at the Darby Green Centre.  Please share cars or use public transport where possible, as parking may be limited.


Dogs may be brought on the walk but must be kept on leads and dealt with in a responsible manner. This is especially important on Yateley Common because of the protection of rare ground nesting birds.

Refreshments and Toilets

Toilets will be available at the start of the walk at the Darby Green Centre. There will be opportunities on the route to have a drink and a snack and to use toilet facilities at the Monteagle Community Hall, Wyndham’s Pond and the Darby Green Centre.


You will simply have to follow the Big Valley Ramble (BVR) signs.  At junctions, if you are uncertain, use the free BVR map we will provide. There is no obligation to remain with your starting group and you are welcome to walk on your own or at your own pace.  If you get to a point where you are not sure where to go it is best to wait, there will always be someone behind to help; alternatively, if you are lost, ring the emergency contact number we’ll give you on the day.

Walking Safely and Check Point

Every walker will be allocated a unique walk number at the start and will be required to report in at the Refreshment Stops so we know that everyone is accounted for. If any walker wishes to leave the walk for any reason, please advise a walk marshal or, if unavoidable, give your name to another walker and ask them to tell a marshal.

The route includes a few short sections of road walking and a few road crossings and most will be manned by road marshals. Care must be taken as some roads may be busy. The walk passes through some ecologically sensitive areas where ground nesting birds will be nesting; and some fields where livestock may be grazing. Please keep to the paths and keep dogs on leads.

Walk marshals and check points will have first aid kits and mobile phones; anyone experiencing difficulties or feeling unwell must tell one of the walk marshals or ring the emergency contact number given on the day. Please note, some of the walk is well away from the road, so help may not be instant.

What Walkers Need

  • Comfortable footwear, suitable for country paths which can be muddy in parts.
  • Suitable clothing for the weather - either a waterproof jacket or sun hat and sun screen.
  • Bottle of drink and a packed lunch.
  • Mobile 'phone, if you have one. It is always a good safety device, although there will be walk marshals with 'phones if there is a problem.

In summary….

The walk will be well organised and supported as you have come to expect from a Blackwater Valley Countryside Trust event, so you will enjoy: 

  • a guided circular walk round the parish of Yateley which revives an ancient tradition;
  • meeting other walkers from the Blackwater Valley and Yateley who come together in the healthy and sociable pursuit of walking;
  • raising money for 2 local good causes; and
  • just having fun!

 With all those reasons, what are you waiting for?