The Wilberforce Challenge

Join us for our fundraising walk across the Wilberforce Way

The Wilberforce Walk challenge…6 walks…1 day

Following on from last years success we are taking on the Wilberforce Way Challenge on the 24th June 2017. Last year we raised over £6,000. A target we are sure we can exceed this year.

There are six stunning routes to choose from, including a three mile accessible walk through York.

We hope you can join us.


The Wilberforce Way is a 60.5 mile linear trail devised to mark the bicentenary of the 1807 Act of Parliament abolishing British involvement in the Transatlantic Slave Trade. Wilberforce was also a passionate supporter of other charitable causes including the education of blind and partially sighted people, which is where the modern day Wilberforce Trust emerges. He himself had poor eyesight which, in the days before large print and audio, meant he had to retire early from his post as MP for Yorkshire.

The trail goes from Hull (where William Wilberforce was born), goes through Pocklington (where he went to school) to York (where he was declared M.P. for the County of Yorkshire). The walks visit some stunning Wolds landscape as well as covering locations of special importance in the struggle for human freedom and dignity.

There are six interconnected walks, including one shorter accessible walk, for you to take part in which between them cover the whole of the Wilberforce Way. Please choose and register to take part in only one of the following walks as the walks will take place at the same time on the same day:

Walk one: The Waterfront Way (10.8 miles) - The Deep (Hull) to Beverley Minster
Walk two: The Westwood Way (11.7 miles) - Beverley Minster to Goodmanham
Walk three: The Weighton Way (12.7 miles) - Pocklington to Goodmanham
Walk four: The Water Way (10.8 miles) - Sutton upon Derwent to Pocklington
Walk five: The Woods Way (11.3 miles) - Walmgate Stray (York) to Sutton upon Derwent
Accessible walk: The Walmgate Way (3.2 miles) - Walmgate Stray to York Minster – suitable for wheelchairs and pushchairs

Minimum age14 years. Under 18s must be accompanied by an adult.

Entry fee £11

Your entry fee covers the cost of organising the event. It's the money you raise that will help fund our Yorsight Dual Sensory Mobile Unit, delivering sight and hearing health to remote areas of Yorkshire, so please set a fundraising target of at least £100 (or make a reasonable personal donation in lieu of this).

Your entry includes

• Fully led walk
• Free T-shirt
• Training guidance
• Fundraising support
• Transport from parking point to the start location if required with the exception of The Woods and The Walmgate Walk
• A certificate for all finishers








Alternatively you can download our registration form

Our Sponsorship form is also available to download



Each walk will be led by an experienced volunteer leader and will start at 9.45am with the exception of The Walmgate Way (accessible walk) which will start at 2.30pm

Details of each walk -

Walk One: The Waterfront Way (10.8 miles)- The Deep (Hull) to Beverley Minster
Walk from Hull to Dunswell and on to Beverley

Walk Two: The Westwood Way (11.7 miles) - Beverley Minster to Goodmanham
Walk from the Minster in Beverley to Cherry Burton, through Etton and towards Gardham ending at Goodmanham

Walk Three: The Weighton Way (12.7 miles) - Pocklington to Goodmanham
From Pocklington through Nunburnholme, Londesborough and Market Weighton to Goodmanham

Walk Four: The Water Way (10.8 miles) - Sutton upon Derwent to Pocklington
Sutton Upon Derwent to Pocklington via the Pocklington Canal across Melbourne Ings

Walk Five: The Woods Way (11.3 miles) - Walmgate Stray (York) to Sutton upon Derwent
From Walmgate Stray (close to the University of York) through Wheldrake and Elvington to Sutton upon Derwent

Accessible Walk: The Walmgate Way (3.2 miles) - Walmgate stray to York Minster – suitable for wheelchairs and pushchairs
From Walmgate Stray (close to the University of York) down to the River Ouse, over the Blue Bridge, Ouse Bridge and Lendal Bridge and on to York Minster via the Museum Gardens.

The Wilberforce Way, a 56 page full colour commemorative guide book giving detailed maps, photographs and instructions of the route together with historical and cultural information about the surrounding area and its connection with Wilberforce is available from the trust priced £5. (Please add £1.20 if you would like the book posting out, otherwise it can be collected from our offices in Huntington.)

If you would like to order one please email Anne Parkinson








Consider the weather conditions

It's important to take into account the potential weather conditions when choosing your kit. Always pack a rain coat even if it looks like it won’t rain. And if the forecast is for hot weather, consider taking extra water with you, and wearing lightweight clothing made from wicking material.


We have listed some clothing we think is essential for your walk:

• suitable footwear (canvas or leather boots with ankle support)
• walking socks
• comfortable shorts for hot days, or longer 3/4 or full length trousers when colder
• T-shirt or light shirt
• waterproof over trousers that can be put on over your shoes and boots if it rains
• mid layer fleece of appropriate thickness
• good waterproof and windproof jacket that's roomy with easily accessible pockets, or lighter jacket for milder conditions
• cap, hat or balaclava
• spare clothing if there is likely to be rain on the day (fleece, socks, hat and gloves)
Other items
• a daypack or rucksack with waterproof cover or lining (eg a plastic bag)
• Lunch, snacks, water


Depending on the weather, you will also need to consider bringing this equipment to help you with your walk:

• base layer made from wicking material
• sunglasses with good UVA/UVB filtering
• sunscreen and lip balm








Share your story

If you have a personal reason for supporting the Wilberforce Trust and you feel you can talk about it, share your motivation with potential supporters. It brings your fundraising to life and will help them understand why it’s important they get involved.

Don’t be afraid to ask

When you are looking for sponsors, don’t be afraid to ask. You’d be amazed how many apparently unlikely people support your cause (as sightloss is common, maybe they have someone in the family with sight loss) and how generous people can be.

Have fun

Before the event, get creative with social and other media to promote your fundraising and when the big day arrives make sure you enjoy yourself! If you’re having a good time, so will everyone else and the more fun you have the more funds you’ll raise.

Thank everyone

Let your supporters know how much they helped you to raise to help keep people with sight loss safe and independent. Your efforts and their funds will help to make a difference to the 10’s of 1000’s of people affected with sight loss in York and Yorkshire.

Maximise your money

Use Virgin Money Giving to create your own secure fundraising page (click on the “start fundraising” button). That way you can mail it to your friends, family and colleagues. Make sure that the first donation is high, as this will inspire others to be equally generous!

Personalise your page
Make it your own! Tell people what you’re doing, why you’re fundraising for us and what you’re hoping to achieve.

Write your own message on the page
• Upload your own photos and videos to the page
• Remember to promote your fundraising on Facebook and Twitter to get everyone you know to sponsor you.
• Make your fundraising go further with Gift Aid

Ask your sponsors to Gift Aid their donation if they are UK tax payers. This means that we receive an extra 25p for every £1 donated and it doesn’t cost you or them anything extra.


What kit will I need?

Details on what kit you need are provided in the separate kit list. Lunch will not be provided so make sure you bring a packed lunch, snacks and water in your day pack. Please read the kit list in full and take particular note of information regarding footwear, jeans, cotton clothing, water and items marked ‘essential’.

What type of footwear should I be wearing?

The choice of walking footwear is incredibly important. The terrain is uneven so it is vital that you use a pair of strong canvas or leather boots with good ankle support for your challenge. Not only the boots but the socks that you wear are also very important and it is worth investing in some thick walking socks to keep your feet comfortable.

Will I need to walk in a group?

Yes, these events are led walks with an experienced walk leader who is familiar with the route and who will be in charge of each of the sections of the walk.

How fit do I need to be?

The Wilberforce Way sections (apart from the accessible walk) are between 11 and 12.5 miles hiking and require a moderate to good level of fitness. If you regularly walk during the week or at the weekend you may not need to do any additional training. Most training should be part of an ongoing lifestyle but if this is not the case then you should begin training 2-4 months prior to the challenge and gradually build up as suggested. Start with 3 x 10 minute steady walks weekly, increasing each month by 5 minutes.

Are there any toilet facilities en route?

No, there are no toilet facilities en route. There are toilet facilities at the point where you will start in the morning, so please make use of these.

How long does it take to complete the walk?

The Walks will take between 4.5 – 5.5 hours to complete which includes a break of around 30 minutes at the half way point to eat your packed lunch

What happens if there is an emergency?

Your walk leader will be carrying a mobile phone in case the emergency services need to be contacted. The event is not run as a race and you will never be encouraged to walk at a pace ‘beyond your ability’. There will be plenty of time for rest breaks and to admire the scenery. There will always be a wide variety in people’s walking abilities.

How will we celebrate completing the walk?

A certificate of completion will be presented to you when you finish your section.

What do you do to protect the environment?

We are committed to sustainable and responsible tourism and ensure that our challenges benefit the local environments and communities in which they take place. By keeping to small group sizes, ensuring that all rubbish is disposed of responsibly, and following local guidelines on cultural and environmental protection and respect, we aim to limit our impact on the natural environment.

Can I bring my dog on the walk?

You are welcome to bring you dog on the walk providing it is well behaved but they remain the responsibility of the owner. For the safety and comfort of all the walkers please make sure that the dog is kept on a lead at all times and that you:
  • are prepared and able to keep control of the dog at all times
  • have dog poo bags and are prepared to use them
  • keep to any regulations about dogs on the route
Please observe the countryside code:


When is my sponsorship due by?

We ask that you raise the minimum sponsorship target of £100 by the date of your challenge or are prepared to make a reasonable donation in lieu of sponsorship. People are more likely to donate the closer it gets to your trek, so really make the most of the weeks leading up to your trek to maximise donations!

Will the sponsorship I raise make a difference?

Absolutely! Last year we raised over £6000 towards the dual sensory mobile unit taking outreach services to York and North York. This year we’d like to do better. The mobile unit will take information, advice and help for people with sight and hearing loss into the remoter parts of Yorkshire where this is not currently available to them. Failing sight and hearing loss can be debilitating, leading to social isolation, lack of confidence and increasing the risk of accident and injury. With your help Wilberforce Trust can make a difference to our local community.

Can I give you my sponsorship money on the day?

Please do not bring the money you have raised with you on the day of the challenge as we are unable to accept it on site. Instead you can pay your sponsorship to The Wilberforce Trust in the following ways:

Online fundraising

If you’ve used our Virgin Money Giving page the money will be sent to us automatically.

By post

Send a cheque with your completed sponsorship forms to: The Wilberforce Trust 49 North Moor Road Huntington York YO32 9QN Please make cheques payable to the Wilberforce Trust

NB: The information provided above was correct at the time of going to print.

By registering for any part of the Wilberforce Way Walk (The Walk) you agree to abide by these rules. Please check this page from time to time, as we may occasionally amend these rules and any changes will be binding on you. By registering for The Walk you also agree to abide by any instructions or regulations displayed or given on the day.


All Wilberforce Trust events have a no smoking policy. For the benefit of those around you please refrain from smoking during The Walk. Please note that these events involve moderate exercise. Participants are responsible for making sure they are prepared for The Walk by training and bringing the required kit and equipment.


Registration fees cover the overheads of The Walk and help to guarantee participation on the day. Unfortunately, given the limited number of spaces for the event, all registration fees are non-refundable after 7 days have passed (as per Distance Selling Regulations) from the participant registering, either online, by phone or receipt of a booking form.


Wheelchair users are encouraged to enter the Walmgate section of The Walk, providing they have assistance at the event.

Participants can take part in the Walmgate section of The Walk with prams/strollers. All participants who are bringing a pram/stroller to the event should use the pram/stroller to accommodate their child and follow instructions given by the Wilberforce Trust staff on the day to include starting the event at the back of the walkers to ease congestion.

Unfortunately, mobility scooter users are not allowed take part. The health and safety of our participants is very important to us and we cannot guarantee that each type of mobility scooter will be able to manoeuvre the route.


Before registering for this event, you should be fit to participate, seeking medical advice if appropriate. Participants are responsible for ensuring that they are sufficiently fit and healthy to take part in The Walk. Any participant unsure of their physical ability to take part in The Walk must seek medical advice from their General Practitioner prior to The Walk.

We have taken all reasonable steps to eliminate the chance of injury but there is a certain minimal risk in every activity and you should withdraw from the event if you have any doubts. Participants in these activities should be aware of and accept these risks and be responsible for their own actions and involvement. By taking part in an Event, all participants acknowledge that there may be conditions or circumstances beyond our control that can lead to unforeseen risks.

The Wilberforce Trust, its employees, agents and volunteers accept no liability whatsoever to participants or spectators in respect of any loss, damage or personal injury which may be sustained in the course of this event other than personal injury (including death) caused by our negligence. Liability cannot be accepted for any damage, injury or loss arising from the negligence of participants (whether through failure to observe the rules of the event or otherwise).


With the exception of the Walmgate Way Accessible Walk you must be at least 14 years old to take part in this challenge.

Anyone under the age of 18 requires parental consent and must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Parents must decide if the event is appropriate for their child and seek additional information if necessary. We reserve the right to prohibit individuals from taking part, and will do so if participants under 18 have failed to provide evidence of parental consent.

It is strict policy for these events that 14-17 year olds must be accompanied at all times by the parent/guardian responsible for them, therefore if the parent/guardian retires from the event the young person/s would have to retire from the event too.

Kit list

We provide a kit list in participants’ welcome packs and on our website. The items on the kit list are for your safety and comfort. Our walk leaders reserve the right not to let you take part in the walk if they believe you are inadequately dressed or equipped for it.


Participation in this event is by pre-registration only. For health and safety reasons anyone not registered to walk will not be permitted to take part.

Entry places in the Event are personal to participants and you may not transfer your place to anyone else, as it may cause problems of identification in the event that medical assistance is required during the Event, for example.


All walkers must be on time for event start, and late arrivals will not be permitted to take part. All information about timings is included in participant packs.


Any decision to cancel the event, either beforehand or during the event, would be based on their expert advice. Should we be advised to cancel the event, all participants would be contacted by telephone immediately. If we cancel the event participant registration fees will be eligible for a refund.

Photography and video

Photographs may be taken of you during the event which may be used to publicise future events and the work of the charity generally including on our website. Please let the staff know if you would not want the images to be used in this way.

Sponsorship Monies and Donations

Any monies raised in connection with The Wilberforce way Walk are held on trust for The Wilberforce Trust, and therefore all participants have a legal responsibility to ensure that all sponsorship monies/donations received in connection with the Event are paid to us. We ask that you do this as soon as possible after the Event.

Changes and Last Minute Arrangements

Once you have registered you are unable to transfer to another section of The Walk without first notifying us. This is because we have strict capacity limits for most sections and for practical reasons we need to make sure that the sections do not exceed individual capacity. If you do wish to transfer please call 01904 760037 and we will endeavour to support your request. In the event that we can accommodate your request you will incur a £5 administration charge to cover the administration of the transfer.