5,000 years. 2,500 miles. One woman.
(And her two feet.)
Watch the video Walking the Timeline of Britain
What am I doing?
Walking the Timeline of Britain (something which has never been done before).
And what’s that exactly?
Covering 2,500 miles on foot, I’ll be weaving my way through Britain, taking in the history of the isles in chronological order. Starting in the Shetland Islands, I’ll be catapulted back in time to the Stone Age, from where I’ll gradually progress through epochs and areas to learn about Britain’s past.
During the hike, I’ll discover the Bronze Age in West Scotland; the Roman obsession with straight roads in northern England; the 8th century hipsters in East Yorkshire (the Vikings curled their moustaches and dyed their beards, you know); Owain Glyndwr’s fight against the English in North and Mid Wales; witches in Devon and war on the south coast. (Among other pieces of history, too.) My journey will end in modern-day London.
Who am I?
Jane Batchelor. (I’m an ex-girl scout.)
What’s the difference between me and other long-distance hikers?
A fair bit, I imagine.
While the adventurous Levison Wood is an ex-army officer, I’m an ex-English teacher. I haven’t undergone gruelling survival techniques in war zones (classrooms aside), or had to catch and eat rats. But apart from my Snickers bar being snatched by a gust of wind, I doubt I’ll be needing to chase my own dinner on this hike.
And unlike the fabulous Julia Bradbury, I won’t have a film or support crew. I’ll be carrying my backpack the entire way, sending Osprey telepathic messages to invent attachable legs for it.
So just what are my credentials?
I’m certainly not adverse to adventure or risks. I spent most of my 20s and early 30s travelling through three continents, undertaking challenging hikes in various countries, including New Zealand’s Southern Alps, high up and unaccompanied in the Andes, the Nepalese Himalayas as well as several long-distance hikes in Britain.
I share my wanderlust tales on my own travel blogs, Yes Jane Can and South America Journeys and I’ve had travel articles published overseas. Although I’m not a historian, I’ll be meeting with guides and locals to hear Britain’s story from the past to the present and writing and vlogging as I go.
Why am I doing this?
After gallivanting far and wide, it’s about time I explored this fascinating country and looked at what has shaped it to become the Great Britain of today. I’d like to learn more about our nation’s history and see the stunning landscape that I have so often taken for granted. And what better way to do that than walking along many routes only accessible on foot?
In addition, any money raised above my costs will be given to help the villagers in Thulo Shafru, Nepal, who are still struggling to get back on their feet after the devastating earthquake two years ago. My guide’s village was razed to the ground and it still isn’t back to pre-earthquake status.
My journey started on May 8th 2017 and while I haven’t set myself a deadline to complete it, I anticipate it could take up to 10 months, as the mileage may easily increase to 3,000 miles.
How can you help?
Short of carrying my backpack (although if anyone wants to…), I’m looking for manufacturers who’d like to sponsor me with kit, or to back me financially. I’ll be aiming for regional publicity throughout the UK and will blog and vlog about my journey. I have also set up a GoFundMe page for donations towards the trip, with anything above my costs going to my friends, the villagers in Thulo Shafru.