Technology

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Walking and Technology

Nowadays, most of us have a “smartphone” and at least one “app” that allegedly tells us the distance we have walked. Why all the different apps can’t agree on this distance is beyond me and the scope of this article. Here, I want to introduce you to some useful apps that you may not be aware of.

/// what3words

what3words is the easiest way to talk about any precise location in the world. Every 3m square has been given a unique combination of three words. 

The pictures above are ones I took on recent walks with the three words attached. Those of you who were on the walks will know where they were taken. Just pop the three words, including the fullstops, into the app and you will see for sure.

what3words is more precise than a street address, and easier to remember, use and say than GPS coordinates, grid references or latitude and longitude and is a really simple way to talk about a location. For example ///tortoises.zones.probable marks the entrance to the Scout Hut Car Park in Fleckney..

You can find a 3 word address using the free what3words app or online map at what3words.com. It works offline and is available in 37 languages

3 word addresses are easy to say and share, and are as accurate as GPS coordinates.

51.520847,  -0.19552100 ←→ /// filled.count.soap

The developer’s vision is for what3words to become a global standard for communicating location. People can use what3words to find their tents at festivals, navigate to B&Bs, and to direct emergency services to the right place.

Discover the what3words app

Open Canal Map

Walking around Fleckney, canals and rivers play a prominent role in our walks. While I was writing the text for Deb’s walk from Marston Trussell, I searched the internet for something to tell me about canal bridge names and numbers. What I found was the Open Canal Map.

I am quite impressed with this app as not only does it show bridge names and numbers, it displays them as what3words locations as well.

Unfortunately, the app doesn’t seem to have been updated recently and some folk criticise the accuracy of some of the data. But, as you can see from the image above, the data for Foxton Locks is certainly correct.

There is hope on the horizon though as a similar and much more functional app is being developed by the UK Waterways Guide.

St. Nicholas Church at Mowsley - also dating back to the 13th century.

Marston to Lubenham

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Marston Trussell to Lubenham

Sunday, 22nd March, 2020

Marston Trussell > Foxton Locks > Lubenham > Marston Trussell

Map

Map of Marston Trussell walk

Elevation

Elevation profile of Marston to Lubenham walk

The Walk

Walk Leader: Deborah Martin

This walk is about 7.5 miles long.

Park near St. Nicholas’ Church in Marston Trussell – there is a bit of a car park there but bear in mind that Holy Communion will be held at the Church at 9:30am.

Head into and through the village along Main Street, past The Sun Inn on to Theddingworth Road, past the Hall and continue until you reach Scoborough Road on your right. Follow Scoborough Road, over the new bridge, until you reach the main, A4304, road. Take the footpath opposite by crossing the road with care.

This footpath takes you over (or under?) the dismantled railway and onto Bunker’s Hill. This, almost straight, roadway takes you to a bridge over the canal. This is Bridge 56 (no beer here!). Leave the road and join the towpath – after the obligatory viewing of the canal in both directions from the bridge!

If you don’t get to Bridge 57 (///atomic.shimmered.foresight) within a few minutes, you’ve gone the wrong way! Hang on. Atomic.shimmered.foresight? Explain!?!

There is an app you can get for your mobile phone called What3words. It will pinpoint your location within a 3 metre square simply by using three words. Many police forces and ambulance services are already using the system. As are the RNLI and other rescue services. It removes the possibility of getting latitude and longitude figures wrong when you are trying to explain your position should anything untoward happen and you need rescuing. For instance, if you put in “tortoises.zones.probable” you will get the Scout Hut Car Park!!

Back to the plot … or at least the footpath. You should now be heading past Lubenham Lodge, and under Bridge 58 (///impulsive.blazing.panting). The canal then curves to the left before Bridge 59 and the longish stretch before the famous flight of locks at Foxton. Perhaps Bridge 61 would be a nice place to stop for a coffee – they do an excellent bacon cob!

The walk now goes past, yes past, The Foxton Lock Inn and along the road by the Lower Car Park. Take the footpath at the end of the car park that will take you towards Foxton. The path will bring you out onto Main Road where you turn right, away from Foxton, and then turn left onto Gallow Field Road. Head along Gallow Field Road until the junction with Foxton Road. Here you will see a footpath sign in opposite you on the junction.

It’s over fields now as you head towards the prison and then sharply away from it. More fields and generally downhill with lots of places to get mislaid until dropping down into Lubenham at The Green. Turn left and head to the junction, carefully cross the road to The Coach and Horses opposite. Here, the ales, beers, and coffees at the pub will refresh your tired bodies.

After a cup/mug or two, or the landlord dismisseth us, it’s left out of the pub and left again onto Rushes Lane. Keep to this lane heading south past the church and then over one bridge and under another. Pick up the footpath heading southwest for a “short amble” across more fields until reaching Marston Road. Bear left and the road turns into Lubenham Road and leads you back into Marston Trussell – hopefully without falling into the river Welland!

Interactive Map

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Marston Trussell

The Pictures