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Summary

  1. The rambling route through the Cotswolds has been captured on Google Street View
  2. It's a glorious 102-mile (164 km) path between Bath and Chipping Campden
  3. This summer marks 10 years since it became an official National Trail
  4. We spent a day on the route meeting some of those making the most of the sunshine

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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  1. A day on the Cotswold Way: A 'real eye opener'

    David Bailey

    BBC News

    Well that's it for my short taster of what it's like walking the Cotswold Way.

    Staff I've just spoken to at a pub in Winchcombe, where walkers stay, say they're normally all checked in by 5.30pm at the latest.

    Plenty of time for them to down a couple of local beers and get a hearty meal.

    Then it'll be up early again tomorrow for their next leg of the Cotswold Way.

    Winchcombe

    Today has been an eye opener for me.

    When I became one of the first people to walk the full 102 mile length of the route after it had been made an official National Trail, I never thought I'd be retracing part of the route a decade later.

    I'm surprised about how much I remember about specific parts of the route - the steep climb up to Dover' s Hill for example.

    But also I realise there are lots of it that I'd forgotten. Were there really that many steps up to the top of Broadway Tower a decade ago?

    One thing that hasn't changed is the beautiful English countryside. I'd recommend a hike along the Cotswold Way to anyone who appreciates getting away from it all and experiencing nature at its finest.

  2. Cotswold Way: 'Just wonderful' according to US couple

    David Bailey

    BBC News

    Bob and Connie Greenlee, from the US state of Oregon, have been walking the Cotswold Way for the last two days.

    Supping a well deserved beer at the White Hart in Winchcombe, they said it had been "wonderful".

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    Video caption: A day on the Cotswold Way: "Just wonderful" according to US couple

    And Karen Charlton, who works at the pub, notices different groups of walkers who stay at the inn have different demands:

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    Video caption: A day on the Cotswold Way: "Walkers like to try the local ales"
  3. Cotswold Way: Ultramarathon runners, 5k runners and amazing views

    Ira Rainey

    Bristol author and ultramarathon runner

    Cotswold Way sign

    Ultramarathon runner and Fat Man to Green Man author Ira Rainey has run the Cotswold Way before. Here, he shares his memories of the route.

    Following the path down through to Wotton-under-Edge and on to Hawksbury Upton is a great section. The views from Wotton Hill are amazing and Hawkesbury Upton is a nice little village, where they hold a family charity 5K run each summer, running on some of the Cotswold Way itself.

    I’ve run it with my kids a couple of times and it’s great to see so many families out on the trail. I’ve also run the last section from Lansdown down into Bath many times, as it’s close to my house.

    Taking a short detour off the path to climb Kelston Roundhill is a great way to spend half an hour or so sitting beneath the iconic copse of trees. On a clear day the view looking out over Saltford, Keynsham and far beyond is breath-taking.

    Views on the Cotswold Way

    Working in Bath I also sometimes run-commute on the Cotswold Way down from Lansdown into Weston and into the centre of Bath. It’s a great way to wake yourself up in the morning and beats sitting in traffic. On a bad weather day you can even occasionally have the path to yourself for most of the way.

    The beauty of a path like the Cotswold Way is that it takes you to places you would never normally get to see. Not only is the countryside the trail passes through really is some of the best the West Country has to offer, but you also get to pass through the grounds of places like Dodington Park that were designed by Capability Brown in the 1760s.

  4. A day on the Cotswold Way: Climbing a Gothic folly

    David Bailey

    BBC News

    Broadway Tower

    Another landmark near the northern end of the Cotswold Way is Broadway Tower.

    The 18th Century folly was designed by the famous landscape designer Capability Brown.

    Broadway Tower

    From the top of the tower, the views of the Vale of Evesham are spectacular.

    Although, it's pretty windy up here today.

  5. Cotswold Way: View from Dover's Hill

    David Bailey

    BBC News

    View from Dover's Hill near Chipping Campden

    Dover's Hill near Chipping Campden is the first major viewpoint on the route - or last, depending on which way you're walking.

    It's also home to the famous Cotswold Olimpicks.

    Gary Porter and Christy Hendrix.

    Gary Porter and Christy Hendrix, who live locally, say they often come up to Dover's Hill for a walk, some fresh air and to admire the views.Gary says: "We feel lucky to live here."

  6. Reflections from the Cotswold Way

    David Bailey

    BBC News

    David Bailey
    Image caption: Ten years ago (left) and today (right) in Chipping Campden

    What struck me about the Cotswold Way was that you never have to walk far to see the next noteworthy site along the way - whether it be ancient long barrows, hill forts, Victorian follies, man-made towers, historic churches, or simply the wonderful views from the Cotswold escarpment.

    And I was so lucky with the weather ten years ago.

    It didn't rain at all during my hike, which was incredibly lucky - the following week the heavens opened and Gloucestershire saw some of the worst flooding in living memory.

    David Bailey
    Image caption: It took a week for me to walk the entire trail in July 2007 - finishing at Bath Abbey
  7. A day on the Cotswold Way: Souvenir t-shirt anyone?

    David Bailey

    BBC News

    Chipping Campden

    I'm at the start/end of the Cotswold Way - the northern end of Chipping Campden.

    I've just met Richard Fermor and Jane Glennie at the town's tourist information centre which is right opposite the trail's start.

    Richard says since the Cotswold Way became an official national trail he's definitely seen an increase in the number of people walking it, especially people from overseas.

    Richard Fermor and Jane Glennie

    He says they have people coming in asking for maps and guides to assist them with planning their walk.

    And people who finish the walk here, often pop in to buy a souvenir t-shirt.

    A Cotswold Way t-shift on sale
  8. Cotswold Way timelapse

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    Video caption: Take a trip through the 102-mile route.
  9. Enjoy part of the Cotswold Way, in timelapse form

    This is a stretch of the path between Wotton and North Nibley:

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    Video caption: We filmed a stretch of the walk between Wotton and North Nibley
  10. A personal view from the trail

    David Bailey

    BBC News

    David Bailey
    Image caption: I walked the Cotswold Way - starting in Chipping Campden, exactly a decade ago

    With Matt having finished his morning stint, and Daniel looking for his car many miles away, we turn to our third reporter of the day who has already walked the route.

    David Bailey will be joining us soon from Chipping Campden where he will trace the route south for a second time.

    I'm back walking a section of the Cotswold Way today, exactly 10 years after I spent a week trekking along the whole route.

    In July 2007 I must have been among the first people to complete the route after it was made an official national trail in the May of that year.

    And even though it's now a decade ago, I still fondly remember the seven days I spent - walking about 15 miles each day, and camping each night.

  11. Gorgeous Gloucestershire views from the Tyndale Monument

    Tyndale Monument
    Tyndale Monument
    Views of Gloucestershire
    Tyndale Monument
    Quote Message: Well I made it to the top. The views are stunning and up there there is a very welcome breeze! It's quiet and peaceful and you feel at one with the landscape. Today's journey along the Cotswold Way to reach The Tyndale Monument is one I won't forget in a hurry. It has been an archetypal hazy English summer's day, the countryside has been inspiring and the many people (and dogs!) I've met on my travels have been warm and friendly and eager to talk of their great love of this most beautiful corner of England. from Daniel Garrett
    Daniel Garrett
  12. Reaching the Tyndale Monument

    Daniel has finally reached the Tyndale Monument, and the views from the base are spectacular. From here you can see all the way back to the Severn Bridge.

    Tyndale Monument
    Tyndale Monument
    Tyndale Monument
    Quote Message: Well after a character-building steep climb, I've made it to my destination - the Tyndale Monument high on a hill overlooking North Nibley. The views are breathtaking and I can even see as far the Severn Bridge in the distance. The monument was built in 1866 in honour of William Tyndale, a bible translator. It is 111ft high and I'm about to brave the spiral staircase to the top - all 121 steps! from Daniel Garrett
    Daniel Garrett
  13. Marathon man Matt reaches his finish line

    We're not quite sure how he did it, but our first walker Matt has rambled all the way from Bath Abbey to just short of the M4. We predict sore legs tomorrow.

    Crown pub
    Quote Message: Sitting by the side of the thundering A46 it's obvious to me what's been the most precious thing about the last seven hours: the silence. Just me, the wind and the birds surfing the thermals rising up out of the West. No cars, few people and the most incredible views, one after another. I've lived in this area my whole life and never been to most of the places on this route. What a joy to be able to explore Britain like this - and oh look, the pub's open as well. Cheers. from Matthew Ford
    Matthew Ford

    Well, he's probably deserved a drink after walking solidly since 6am.

  14. The North Nibley village shopkeeper who meets Cotswold Way walkers

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    Video caption: Cheryl's shop is halfway along the Cotswold Way, a vital stopping-off point for ramblers.
  15. A vital refreshment stop before the steep climb to the Tyndale Monument

    It's getting pretty warm outside now. Thankfully our man Daniel has found a much-needed rest stop in North Nibley.

    Village shop
    Quote Message: Finding Cheryl's village shop on North Nibley after two solid hours of walking up hill and down dale on a hot summer's day - not even knowing if I was heading in the right direction - was like finding an oasis in the desert! After vital ablutions and an ice cold soft drink, I heard some of Cheryl's stories of meeting Cotswold Way walkers from all across the world. Now I was ready to continue on my journey up to the famous Tyndale Monument. from Daniel Garrett
    Daniel Garrett
    Monument sign
  16. Californian ramblers enjoying Gloucestershire

    Michael and Theresa are visiting from California to walk the Cotswold Way. They're off to Bath today, and said all the locals "are so nice”.

    Walkers
  17. Cold Ashton view is amazing

    Matt's made it to Cold Ashton in an amazing-paced walk towards the M4 motorway. He was in the centre of Bath at 6am!

    But, we're sure he's glad he's got as far as he has for the view.

    Cold Ashton view of the Cotswold Way
  18. On the Cotswold Way walk - a guitar gently weeps

    Daniel Garrett

    BBC News

    For a Tuesday I have encountered a fair number of fellow walkers.

    A mum taking her young family out at the start of the school holidays, two older gentleman - friends out for a walk "putting the world to rights"

    There was also a lone fellow strumming his guitar quietly at the Beacon above Wotton taking in the spectacular view.

    I also encountered a woman out with four of her seven dogs - among them a lurcher and my favourite - an adorable daschund.

    Sign at Wooton
    Path on Cotswold Way
  19. Rambler is walking Cotswold Way in six days ... he's nearly finished!

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    Video caption: This walker has come from Glasgow to explore the route.