A RAMBLER group in Hampshire is holding a festival of walks to show residents the countryside is closer than they might think.

The Eastleigh Ramblersorganised campaign involves a series of free walks and runs through August.

The walks are taking place in Eastleigh itself, as well as Botley and Bursledon.

Richard Kenchington, footpath secretary for Eastleigh Ramblers, said: “The objective is to increase awareness of the walks that can be undertaken in and around the Borough of Eastleigh.

“There is still a good network of paths despite the appearance of much development in recent years, and by organising walks in every part of the Borough we are hoping to prove that you can have a day in the countryside without going far from the front door.”

The events vary between five-and-a-half miles and eight-and-a-half miles in length. All are free and walkers do not need to be a member of the Ramblers to take part.

They will be held at 10am on August 9 in Eastleigh, August 10 in Bishopstoke, August 13 in Fair Oak, Horton Heath on August 16, Hedge End on August 17, August 23 in Bursledon and August 24 in Botley.

An event will also be held in Eastleigh at 2.15pm on August 20.

For more information visit eastleighramblers.hampshire.