Phoenix Walking Club

New Member Information

All members should be familiar with the Constitution and the Rules & Guidelines but they only tell part of the story. This section aims to fill out the picture of how the club operates on a week to week basis.

The Booking System

Phoenix has a computerised booking system that is pivotal in the operation of the club. It is operated by the Bookings Secretary but everyone has to play their part in helping it to run smoothly.

  • All members have a membership number. Please remember your number as you will need it when making a booking.
  • Every one has a preferred bus pickup point stored in the system. Make sure this is correct or you could get booked on the "wrong" bus.
  • If your personal details such as address, phone, etc. change make sure that the booking secretary and membership secretary are informed.

Making a Booking

On Friday mornings between 10:00 and 11:00 at Chirnside House (except on those Fridays when we have or walk or are public holidays) each member can make bookings for themselves and one other member. Before or after those times bookings will only be taken at the discretion of the booking sectretary who has other housekeeping tasks to perform. .
Walk Booking Status shows the status at the end of the previous booking day. Check here to ensure that the walks you want still have space available. It could save you a wasted journey.

To make a booking you will need to fill out a booking form. You will a supply of forms with your new programme, or get some at Chirnside, or print some off from the documents section of this site.

Note that

  1. Only one member per form. If you are booking for a partner you will have to fill out a second form even if the walks being requested are the same.
  2. List the walk numbers of all the walks you want on the one form. Just the walk number - no need for dates or destination
  3. When making a booking you are accepting that you are participating at your own risk.
Once your bookings have been made and paid for, you will receive a receipt that highlights the bookings made today but also shows all previous bookings made for walks that have not yet taken place.
Check this receipt carefully. Human error do occur (wrong numbers on forms, typing errors etc.) so please ensure that
  • The right name appears at the top.
  • The desired walks have been booked.
  • The Bus and Pickup points are correct.

Non-Members Booking

At 11:00, members can book for guests but only for any walks that will take place between then and the next Friday when we be taking bookings. This will normally be just the next walk but on those weeks when we walk the following day, i.e. on Saturday, then the walks on the following Friday and the Thursday in the week after that will all be available.
The Saturday walks do not usually get filled and so present themselves as the best opportunity for non-members to walk with us.

Cancelling a Booking

If you find that for some reason that you can't go on a walk that you have already booked then please let the booking secretary know (if there is bookings day before the event) so that your seat can be sold to another member.
  1. No refunds are issued except in special circumstance such as funerals and hospital appointments
  2. Walks can not be transfered to other members.
  3. If you change you mind later, e.g. your visitors can't come, then you can be reinstated on the walk if there is space.
  4. If for any reason the club cancels a walk then all booking fees will be refunded.
If on the day you decide not to come out then sending a message to the bus steward via another member would be useful but not essential.

Bus Pick-up Points

There are two buses for each walk, except on a Saturday when there is only one bus. The pick-up points and times are

One bus goes from Four Lane Ends to North Shield via and the other starts at Wallsend then goes to Monkseaton and to North Shields where co-ordination of the days activities takes place.
You should arrive at the pick-up point aat least 5 minutes before the departure time otherwise your seat on the bus can not be guarenteed (see the next section).

Walking Without a Booking

For one reason or another, around 10% of the booked seats are not taken up on the day. If you are not booked you can come to Monkseaton or North Shields Pool on spec in the hope of getting one of these seats. Turning anybody away is an extremely rare event.

When viewed from the road the queue to get on the bus is formed to the left of the bus stop sign. If you are comming on spec then queue to the right of the sign and let the bus steward know you are there. Seats are allocated on the following basis (first come first served within the individual categories).

  1. Memebers who previously booked then cancelled this walk, i.e. have already paid for it
  2. Walk leaders who would be leading a walk that day
  3. Other members
  4. Non-memebers and guests
Please, if possible, have a booking slip made out and the correct fee for the walk ready.

Selecting Your Walk

Once the buses depart fron North Shields, descriptions of the walks will be circulated around the bus. e.g.

  • The style used and amount of information provided by each lead does vary.
  • If want to compare exactly where each walk is going then you'll need the relevant OS to decipher the description.
  • If you are not an expierenced fell walker then start choose a walk that is less demanding than you think you are capible of and build up your level on subsequent walks. Walking on the hills and fells is far more demanding than walking on man made surfaces.
  • Don't just look at the distances involved. Shorter walks with more assent can far more difficult, especially in the Lake District.
  • If in doubt ask for advice from others.
  • Individual walks are refered to by the name of the leader, e.g. "Jo's Walk", so remember whose walk want to go on.

Once the walks have circulated the leader of the day will announce the sequence of the walks getting off the bus, the pub that we will gather in after the walk and the departure time. Make a note of the pub name.
Just before each time the bus stops it is announce which leader is about to get off. Get off at the same time as your leader!

Enjoy Your Walk

This is what it is all about so being properly prepared will aid your enjoyment
  • Where proper walking footwear.
  • Wear suitable clothing for the weather. Avoid cotton because it absorbes moisture such as sweat and rain and is slow to dry out. Jeans are especially inappropriate for the fells.
  • Have waterproofs available.
  • Carry sufficent food and drink for the day.
  • Carry a torch in the Winter months
  • Carry contact names and numbers, medical information etc. in case you are taken ill or have an accident
  • Know the Countryside Code
Once the walk is under way introduce yourself to the walk leader