Walk­ers are now wel­come to use their smart phones to find their way

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS -

WALK­ERS will soon be able to use their smart phone or de­vice to en­joy a range of new routes in Che­sham.

Che­sham Walk­ers are Wel­come is de­vel­op­ing a se­ries of four walks around the town, us­ing a free, in­ter­ac­tive app for smart phones, tablets and Ap­ple watches.

The walks are based on routes orig­i­nally cre­ated by Che­sham Mu­seum for some of its guided walks.

The app will al­low res­i­dents and vis­i­tors to fol­low a route on their phones, with high­lighted stops at points of in­ter­est where in­for­ma­tion screens can be ac­cessed, giv­ing de­tails of the his­tory and sig­nif­i­cance of the sites.

There are walks in the Old Town, the High Street and Water­side, plus one in the foot­steps of Thomas Hard­ing, the lo­cal mar­tyr.

The walks will be il­lus­trated with pho­tographs, and it is an­tic­i­pated that they will all be avail­able by the end of the year.

The app is the brain­child of a lo­cal com­pany, Hand­held Tours, which spe­cialises in de­vel­op­ing app-based ex­pe­ri­ences for mu­se­ums, out­door at­trac­tions, his­toric homes, her­itage sites and coun­try­side through­out the UK.

The com­pany has worked with or­gan­i­sa­tions in a num­ber of towns, no­tably Chip­ping Nor­ton and Guild­ford, and bod­ies such as the Chilterns Con­ser­va­tion Board.

It has also pub­lished themed walks, in­clud­ing one for Lon­don The­atres.

Che­sham Walk­ers are Wel­come com­mit­tee mem­ber Ken Austin said: “We hope the app will en­cour­age many vis­i­tors into Che­sham to dis­cover its fas­ci­nat­ing and in­trigu­ing his­tory. But for those who pre­fer a more tra­di­tional ap­proach, there will also be down­load­able leaflets de­scrib­ing the walks.”

Arthur LaCour of Hand­held Tours said: “The app makes down­load­ing walks ef­fort­less, and once it’s down­loaded you don’t even need a data con­nec­tion to nav­i­gate or ac­cess in­for­ma­tion, set­ting you free to ex­plore with only a GPS sig­nal.”

The project is be­ing funded by grants from the Her­itage Lot­tery, the Chilterns Con­ser­va­tion Board, Chiltern Dis­trict Coun­cil and Che­sham Town Coun­cil.

Che­sham Walk­ers are Wel­come was launched in 2010, and is part of a na­tion­wide net­work of sim­i­lar or­gan­i­sa­tions.

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