Ringwood & Fordingbridge Footpath Society

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Welcome to the website of the Ringwood and Fordingbridge Footpath Society. Newcomers to the area, prospective new members and visitors are very welcome to join us for walks in these delightfully varied parts of Hampshire, Dorset and Wiltshire. Our walks normally take place in an area of wonderfully contrasting scenery , from the New Forest to the rolling chalk downlands and coastline of Dorset and the rural landscapes of southern Wiltshire.



The Ringwood and Fordingbridge Footpath Society was formed in 1974 to protect the interests of users of public paths by ensuring (a) their reasonable maintenance and freedom from obstruction  and (b) their adequate signposting and waymarking. It aims to urge local authorities to discharge their responsibilities with regard to public paths and seeks to foster and maintain friendly cooperation between path users, landowners, local authorities and the community generally.

The Society's area is made up of thirteen parishes and covers about 160 square kilometres of greatly varied countryside ranging from quiet water meadows to high wind-blown common, from the edge of the New Forest to the borders of Cranborne Chase. A variety of flora and fauna including deer may be seen and within the new forest, grazing ponies, cattle, donkeys, sheep and pigs may be met.

Although we are essentially a footpath protection organisation, we believe that the best way of maintaining the network in good order is to make good and regular use of it.

During the months of April and October, our walks take place on the rights of way in our 13 parishes. For the other 10 months of the year, our walks are also held in an area of wonderfully contrasting scenery, from the New Forest to the rolling chalk downlands and onwards to the coastline of Dorset and the rural landscapes of Southern Wiltshire.



Note to all members





Countryside code







The Society provides a comprehensive programme of guided walks and social events throughout the year. The walks are a mixture of short walks of about 4 miles duration and longer walks which are normally between 8-10 miles in length. These are held both midweek and at weekends although it is usual for the longer walks to take place at a weekend. A programme of the walks can be seen by clicking on the box on the left.

Because of the lack of light in the evenings, the winter programme runs from the 1st September until mid April. During this time, all walks are held during the daytime with no evening walks taking place.

The summer walk period runs from mid April to 31st August. The walks are often held in the evenings and they usually commence at 6.30pm but the actual start time will be decided by the walk leader.

Regular social events are arranged in both the winter and summer months.

Because of the requirements laid down by the Society's insurers, dogs, while often welcome on our walks,do have to be kept under control at all times. Walk leaders  may request  that they are kept on a lead.


Members shall take every reasonable precaution to ensure their own safety and the safety of other members and of members of the public during all Society events of whatever nature.

No member shall engage in any Society activity in any way which might endanger his/her own safety or that of any other person.

When engaged in any Society activity of whatever nature, members shall at all times behave in accordance with the dictates of common sense and take all reasonable care for the safety of themselves and others.

The Society, its officers and walk leaders accept no responsibility or liability for any incident or mishap affecting any member while engaged in any activity organised by the Society. All such incidents are the sole responsibility of the individual concerned.

Members shall adhere to the Counryside Code:

Respect other people
1. Consider the local commuity and other people enjoying the outdoors.
2  Leave gates and property as you find them and follow paths unless wider access  is  available.

Protect the natural environment
1. Leave no trace of your visit and take your litter home
2. Keep dogs under effective control and comply with any directions for the walk leader

Enjoy the outdoors
1. Plan ahead and be prepared.
2. Follow advice and local signs










"Waymark" is the quarterly newsletter of the RFFS. It is published in March, June, September and December. The latest newsletter can be viewed by clicking on the "Waymark" link.

A regular copy of this newsletter can be obtained by becoming a member of the Society and an application form is available online by clicking the box labelled "RFFS Application Form" which can be found at the bottom of this page. It should be printed off and posted to the Membership Secretary. (Membership fees are very reasonable - £4 for a single member or £6 for a family membership)

Please refer to this page for items such as urgent notices, changes, amendment or additions to the programme.

RFFS has joined the Walking Partnership with the Ramblers. For details of what this
means please clicke box on the left.


News and details of the Parishes within our area.

Minutes of the AGM held on 16th March 2015 and date of the next AGM








Photos of group holdays organised and run by our Chairman





Click on the"Web Links" button for other websites worth visiting.These include the

New Forest National Park Authority Healthy Walks at:
Ringwood & Poulner
Fordingbridge and Blashford Lakes






Click in the box on the left for a printable version of the application form

Click on the box on the left to send an email to RFFS.(rffs4@btinternet.com)

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