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Walking with Offa Co-operation Project

September 30, 2015 • Rural Innovation

Walking with Offa Co-operation Project

The “Walking with Offa” RDP Axis 4 Cooperation project was a cross border partnership project between English and Welsh LEADER Local Action Groups, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs), a National Park and local authorities whose territories include the border area along the Offa’s Dyke Path National Trail. There were eleven partners involved with a budget of almost £1 million across England and Wales.

irresistable-offaThe project aimed to improve the quality of the sustainable tourism across the Wales/ England borderland with improved access, information, interpretation, outdoor activity opportunities and good quality facilities. 

The project aimed to capitalise on the natural and cultural assets of Offa’s Dyke region and encourage more and extended visits throughout the year.  Particular attention was given to supporting local products, services and rural businesses.  The desire for sustainable tourism led to encouraging public or sustainable transport.

The successful project helped to improve the walking offer; support the Walkers are Welcome community-led scheme, produce interpretation material, train volunteers and promotional events, as well as a sustainable walking guide.  Plans for communication, marketing, interpretation and media development were also funded and the whole Offa region was represented in the same way.

Sustainable transport development was promoted with tours and literature.  Buses were branded “Offa Hoppas” to improve access to walking trails in the area and less well–known attractions in the border region were also promoted with buses promoted via social media and local and national press.

This Co-operation project exceeded outputs and results targets and had a positive impact on local individuals and communities, socially, environmentally and economically.