By Joshua Robinson –
Huddersfield-based walking group, We In Front, is set to be the subject of an upcoming BBC Radio 4 programme.
A fixture of the Radio 4 schedule, “Ramblings” stars presenter Clare Balding joining notable and interesting people for a walk through the countryside.
The 30-minute show, featuring a walk to the top of Huddersfield’s Castle Hill, will be broadcast at 3 pm on Thursday 15th February.
Eighteen members of the group joined Clare for the 3 hour trek along muddy tracks and bridleways, on one of the few dry days of this Winter. They were rewarded at the top of the hill with panoramic views of West Yorkshire. They finished off with a West Indian-style picnic and a calypso sing-song by some of the many musicians who make up We In Front.
We In Front began in 2020 during the COVID lockdowns. Lowerhouses resident Errol Hamlet (69) was bored and frustrated but was inspired to see a neighbour taking advantage of her 60 minutes outdoors with vigorous walking.
Errol Hamlet had never seen the point of walking for its own sake before, but once he started he felt like he didn’t want to stop.
Soon he was attracting the attention of fellow West Indian friends and, as lockdown eased, Errol found he had a group of hiking converts around him.
Want the latest news in Kirklees sent directly to your phone? Join the KLTV WhatsApp Community today!
Since then they’ve grown to have over thirty members and walk 4 times a week, catering to people of all abilities from flat rambles to scaling the most rugged terrain in the Pennines.
We In Front reckon they are probably the most active group of West Indian pensioners walking anywhere in the UK. Whilst still drawing most of its membership from the Windrush Generation, the group includes walkers of diverse ethnic backgrounds.
Errol Hamlet said: “I used to have severe joint problems and could barely get down the street. I was feeling pretty sorry for myself, but since I took up regular walking in this atmosphere of laughter and music, I’ve felt like I’m born again. It was lovely to host Clare Balding, and a great endorsement of what we’ve achieved.”
Group Secretary Cynthia Matheson added: “I’ve lived in Huddersfield all my life but it’s only since I joined We In Front that I’ve realised what a lovely area we live in. It’s given me the confidence to explore the countryside around us, and now every time we go out it’s like a new adventure.”
Before leaving Clare Balding said to Errol: “I loved being part of your group. I’m quite jealous because you go out walking so much. But next
time I’m in the area I’ll know you’ll be out there, so I’ll come and find you.”
If the Ramblings episode inspires any listener to take up hiking, We In Front welcomes newcomers of all backgrounds and abilities. To join the group, email firstname.lastname@example.org