"Health & Heritage"


Three Walks around East Cowes

If you were interested in the Health Walks project run by the NHS Trust, but would like to look out for points of interest en route, the “Friends” have come up with a pamphlet. In partnership with the IWNHS Health Walks team we have successfully bid for some funding from the Big Lottery “Awards for All” to turn our plans into reality. The pamphlet shows three walks of varying length around the town with information about historical features and is now available from the Heritage Centre, the Library, and from Bridge House, Ferry Road. We have also erected several special bronze plaques along the routes in honour of important local people and places.
On Sunday 7th March we took a party of invited guests around the short Town Centre route. During the walk Brian Charlesworth of the Classic Boat Museum unveiled a plaque to yacht designer Uffa Fox, and High Sheriff Gay Edwards unveiled one to Georgian architect John Nash.
On Wednesday 17th March 2010 there was a special sociable “Healthy Heritage” walk in association with the IW NHS Trust Health Walks team. It started at the Pavilion, Vectis Road and covered the pamphlet’s “Park” walk along Victoria Grove, York Avenue and Adelaide Grove. Along the way a plaque commemorating the life of Sir Christopher Cockerell, inventor of the hovercraft, was unveiled by his friend and colleague Ray Wheeler.
In May 2011 the “East Cowes Park” walk was part of the Isle of Wight Walking Festival programme. The walk was led by Friends Sarah and Peter.
On 4th June 2011 Glyn Roberts’ sculpture depicting the first speeding fine on the Isle of Wight was unveiled by the new High Sheriff Suzie Sheldon (see photo). The accompanying plaque tells the story of the event, which took place in 1899. Two policemen, one standing at the junction of York Avenue and New Barn Road (where the sculpture now stands) and one at the bottom of the hill, timed Henry House, an American inventor and owner of the Liquid Fuel Engineering Company in the Town, as he travelled down in his vehicle. A “furious” speed of 18mph was recorded.

If you would like to join in with the IW NHS Health Walks in East Cowes, they start from the Pavilion in Vectis Road at 10am on Wednesdays.

Subsequently, in 2012, friend Peter Lloyd,devised a “Blitz Walk” leaflet to be used during the 70th commemorations of the Cowes/East Cowes Blitz. Interested locals and visitors were taken on a route showing some of the sites which had received bomb damage in May 1942 before reaching the Town Hall for refreshments.