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National TrailsRidgeway and Thames Path National Trails

These two national trails cross Oxfordshire with the Ridgeway keeping mainly to the high ridge of the Downs and the wooded slopes of the Chiltern Hills, and the Thames Path following England's best known river. Walkers can enjoy both of the Trails, cyclists and horse riders the western half of the Ridgeway and short sections in the Chilterns. The western half of the Ridgeway is also open to vehicles.
Both Trails are managed by the National Trails Office which maintains and improves them, promotes their use and works to improve its historical landscape and wildlife.

Activities and Services:

  • National Trails Volunteer Scheme - opportunities for getting involved in the two Trails including practical work and leading guided events
  • Year round guided events programme
  • Surveys of mammals and other relevant animals enlisting the help of game-keepers, and organised in collaboration with other research/conservation groups
  • Large range of information for both short and long walks or rides

Geographic coverage:

The Ridgeway travels for 136 km from Overton Hill near Avebury (Wilts) to Ivinghoe Beacon (Bucks). The Thames Path follows the river for 288 km from its source in Gloucestershire to the Thames Barrier in London.

Key contacts

National Trails Officer (part-time), National Trails Office, Signal Court, Old Station Way, Eynhsam OX29 4TL Tel: 01865 810224 Fax: 0845 6069614
Email: [email protected] Website:


For organisations that have a geographical coverage that stretches beyond Oxfordshire, the most accessible contact for Oxfordshire activities is listed. M - These groups run a membership subscription scheme, but will very often provide initial advice free of charge NL - Newsletter This Directory may not provide the total coverage of the activities of the groups listed. It concentrates on environmental and nature conservation activities. Disclaimer: ONCF  cannot accept liability for any losses due to the inaccuracy of any information in this Directory.