General guidelines for walkers

Manx Footpaths Conservation Group (MFCG) takes the safety of all participants on it walks as a priority but does not wish to remove the enjoyment of sociable group walking around our beautiful island. Here are a few general guidelines for members/potential members and visitors to achieve maximum enjoyment for your MFCG walk.

  • All walks have distance and terrain guidelines. Hopefully there is a walk for everyone so please choose a walk that you feel best suits your fitness level. If in doubt, your coordinator will be happy to assist or advise in any way possible
  • All walks are risk assessed for the general safety but all walkers walk at their own risk
  • All walks will have a Walk Leader who will inform you of the walk route and any safety concerns at a short briefing before commencement
  • Please wear appropriate clothing and footwear. The weather can change rapidly on the island so layers and waterproofs are advised at all times of year
  • If you have medication that you could potentially require on the walk, it is your responsibility to carry and administer it if necessary. If you feel the Walk Leader should be aware of a particular medical condition, please advise them of this before the walk commences
  • Please do not walk in front of the Walk Leader or behind the Back Marker. If you require a comfort break, please inform the Back Marker
  • When walking on roads, please adhere to the Highway Code unless the Walk Leader provides alternative instructions
  • If you have any concerns during a walk, please speak to the Walk Leader.
  • Where snacks, lunch and water are advised, please bring sufficient supplies for your individual requirement. Many of the walks are located in more remote areas of the island where provisions cannot be purchased
  • When walking on roads, please walk in single file and on the right hand side, unless advised otherwise by the Walk Leader
  • If you decide to leave a walk early, please advise the Walk Leader
  • No dogs are allowed on MFCG walks
General guidelines for walk leaders

All members of Manx Footpaths Conservation Group (MFCG) are actively encouraged to lead walks, however there is no requirement to do so. Please read the following guidelines when planning a walk:

  • Only fully subscribed members are allowed to lead walks
  • Walk Leaders are encouraged to attend one of the First Aid courses organised by the club and to carry a First Aid kit when walking
  • All Walk Leaders are advised to carry their own mobile phone in case of emergency. Please consider downloading a location app such as the ‘What3words’ app if possible so that the emergency services can accurately identify a location if required
  • All walk days have guidelines for distance and duration and the walk should be based around these guidelines
  • Walk Leaders should design a walk that they feel comfortable to lead in terms of the distance and terrain. Stiles, gates and the crossing of busy roads can extend the duration of a walk. Consideration should be given to the suitability of places for rests and lunch stops and ‘escape / alternative’ routes in case of an incident
  • Walk Leaders must undertake a reconnaissance (recce) walk to check the route for any unexpected alterations or diversions. Ideally this should take place as close to the walk date as possible but as a maximum, four weeks before the walk date
  • A Risk Assessment (RA) form must be filled out following the recce either using the interactive form on the website or manually. Please follow the guidelines for completing this form. The completion of a RA is a mandatory requirement. Non-compliance will invalidate the club’s insurance policy
  • Walk Leaders should take into account the weather forecast and consider alternative routes if necessary. The safety of the Walk Leader and walkers must take priority and the Walk Leader should cancel the walk if they feel it is not appropriate to undertake the walk. Please contact the Walk Coordinator for advice if necessary. The Walk Leader or a representative should attend the start point of a cancelled walk to inform those members who have not been notified of the change in circumstances
  • The Walk Leader should designate a Back Marker at the beginning of a walk. Both should agree the number of walkers taking part and complete checks at appropriate intervals during the walk. The Walk Leader and Back Marker should liaise regularly to ensure a comfortable and achievable pace is established for all participants
  • Walkers should not walk ahead of the Walk Leader or behind the Back Marker
  • When walking on roads the Walk Leader should adhere to the Highway Code unless it is not safe to do so
  • Walk Leaders and Back Markers are advised to wear hi-visibility clothing whilst walking on long sections of road. Walk Coordinators have a supply of hi-visibility jackets for use on walks
  • In the unlikely event of an accident or incident Walk Leaders must complete an Incident Form in a timely manner – ideally within 24 hours. This can be completed via the website or manually and sent to the Safety Officer and Chair
  • No Dogs are allowed on MFCG walks

At the start of every walk the leader should conduct a short briefing to:

  • Introduce themselves and any new members/visitors
  • Outline of the route and any potential hazards
  • Remind all participants that they walk at their own risk
  • Identify a designated Back Marker
  • Highlight any concerns about the weather which might impact on the walk

Leading a walk is fun and many members find it rewarding, especially if it’s a route they enjoy. Keep aware at all time of the group members but most importantly enjoy leading your walk.

Our Risk Assessment and Incident Forms can now be completed online. If you would prefer to handwrite these and post them please download the forms below. Please note that online completion is preferable

Risk Assessment

The Risk Assessment form must be completed by all members leading a walk. Please fill in all the relevant details as required

Incident Form

For any incidents that occur on a walk organised by the Manx Footpaths Conservation Group the following incident form must be completed