Visit unique historic buildings, see beautiful countryside, get some exercise and have fun with the family! Ride+Stride is a sponsored bike ride or walk in which people all over England walk or cycle between churches, exploring and enjoying the countryside from Cornwall to Northumberland. The money they raise helps to save historic churches, chapels and meeting houses for future generations by helping to fund urgent repairs and the installation of modern facilities. Below are the areas where a Ride+Stride event is taking place in 2017.

Bedfordshire & Hertfordshire

The Ride+Stride in Bedfordshire started in 1992 and is now bringing over 600 churches into the event each year throughout Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire and raising over £100,000 from some 1,000 cyclists and walkers and their generous sponsors.

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Berkshire

Participants are free to devise their own routes but this year we have suggested walks and cycle rides. There is a an interesting walk around the Reading Churches, and an enjoyable and mainly rural, circular cycle route taking in Twyford, Hurst, Binfield, the Walthams, Shottesbrook and Ruscombe.

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Buckinghamshire

Walkers, horse riders, cyclists and users of mobility scooters, wheelchairs and pushchairs are all welcome to visit the many churches that will be open this year. Many churches will have a welcome party and offer refreshments to participants. Participants can plan their own route or join an organised route or event.

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Cambridgeshire

We want as many people as possible to enjoy the county’s churches and see for themselves why these wonderful buildings need to be supported. Ride+Stride coincides with Heritage Open Days, so there will be other events and places to visit alongside the churches and chapels especially in Cambridge, Peterborough and other towns.

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Cheshire

We are encouraging people to raise money for Cheshire churches by walking, cycling or riding between as many churches as you can, or by welcoming Riders+Striders to your church. Many churches now also run events on the day.

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Cornwall

There are lots of ways to help raise funds so that we can help look after these irreplaceable buildings. Have-A-Go at bell ringing. Climb The Tower. Children’s I-Spy. Quiz The Vicar. A coffee morning or a Teddy Bear’s picnic. Worm charming in the churchyard! Or, organise a sponsored bike ride and visit churches.

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Devon

In Devon, every year Ride+Stride is a very important part of the Devon Historic Churches Day. Devon is an amazing place to live, how lucky we are to have such wonderful countryside and coastline. This makes the Ride+Stride event one of the most enjoyable activities imaginable in which to raise funds.

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Dorset

Visiting Dorset’s beautiful churches on foot, by bicycle or on horseback, R+S provides a fun focus for community fund-raising, suitable for children, families and friends. Many of our riders and striders take part year after year. In 2016 they raised almost £81,000.

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Essex & East London

Essex and East London are fortunate to have so many wonderful and diverse churches. Ride+Stride Day is the one when they show off their richness by opening as many as possible for visitors. Our churches interpret Ride+Stride in lots of different ways. At one church all the Psalms were sung on Ride+Stride Day 2016.

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Gloucestershire

Dust off your bike, horse or walking boots or even take the car if you need to and get ready to enjoy a fun Ride+Stride day out exploring Gloucestershire and North Bristol. There is no organised set of routes through the region so participants are invited to make up their own, taking in as many or as few churches as they wish.

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Hampshire & the Islands

Cycle, walk, run, ride, drive or even use your bus pass to visit participating churches; invite family, friends, and colleagues to sponsor you (or your dog!). Be a ‘meeter and greeter’ in your church for part of the day or provide cakes and refreshments for the Riders and Striders. Or simply sponsor friends or family taking part.

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Herefordshire

Ride+Stride is open to all participants, young and old. Although it is called Ride+Stride, there is no requirement ‘to get on your bike’. You can also walk or even get sponsorship by sitting in your church. Some churches also organise coffee mornings.

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Humberside

Ride+Stride in Humberside is run by Yorkshire Historic Churches Trust, and helps to raise funds to help preserve some of our county’s best loved churches, chapels and meeting houses. You may want to plan your own route, or follow one of our planned routes featuring interesting and unusual churches and chapels which will be open and welcoming visitors.

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Kent

There are usually some 750 of these places of worship open, scattered right across this big county, and wherever you go you’ll be assured of a warm welcome. Don’t worry about carrying lots of food of drink as plenty is available at the churches or lots of pubs en route!

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Leicestershire

Around 400 sponsored cyclists, walkers, runners, joggers, horse riders, motor scooter drivers and welcomers providing hospitality in churches join in to follow routes they choose around the 400 or so churches which register to open for the event. Some churches devise a communal route and enjoy the fellowship and fun of a day out.

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Lincolnshire

Around 170 sponsored cyclists, walkers, runners and horse riders take part in the day and with over 90 churches benefiting directly from taking part. Nearly 700 churches are open on the day with either welcomers providing hospitality or cold drinks left out in many churches. Participants devise their own route and can visit as many or few churches as they like.

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Norfolk

In Norfolk, Ride+Stride has raised around £2,600,000 over the last 30 years. Please take part and walk, ride or drive around Norfolk’s churches to raise money. Even if you are not a cyclist or even a walker then you can still take part by either being sponsored to drive around churches or act as a steward on the day.

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Northamptonshire

Northamptonshire can boast splendid examples of Saxon, Medieval, Georgian, Victorian and Modern church architecture. And it is not just the buildings, but also their furnishings, stained glass, wall paintings and carved stonework. These churches are important, not just as places of worship, but also as the focus for the local community.

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Nottinghamshire

Plenty of churches will be open for visitors throughout the day, some with refreshments available for weary riders! Other activities might be on offer too, so why not drop in and see? There’s no list of set routes to follow, and those taking part are free to visit as few or as many churches as they wish and do whatever takes their fancy.

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Oxfordshire

Never let the British weather put you off! The second Saturday in September usually fairs well for the weather, 2012 had a very hot Ride+Stride. The previous significantly wet Ride+Stride was 2005 when someone reported being ankle deep in a raging torrent! This year the Tour of Britain cycling race will be passing through Oxfordshire on the same day.

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Rutland

Have a fun day out visiting some very special church buildings in Rutland, and raise a lot of money for a very worthy cause. Whilst many of our participants choose to walk or cycle we welcome anyone who is willing to take on a personal challenge. All participants receive a certificate, and cyclists who visit over 45 churches receive a special certificate.

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Shropshire

Last year 217 churches opened their doors in Shropshire and they raised £28,396. Money raised by cyclists and walkers is shared equally between the Shropshire Historic Churches Trust and the place of worship chosen by the participant. It is a real community effort and great fun to be part of.

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Somerset

'Our churches are literally our historic and cultural touchstones in our landscapes, built environment, family histories and our communities. They embody faith, beauty, craftsmanship and collective memory. So we should cherish them.' Kevin McCloud

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Staffordshire

Staffordshire has many different faces: hills of the Peak District; gently rolling farmland; quieter valleys of the Mease, Churnet, Blithe and Penk; wonderful flora and fauna of Cannock Chase; ancient towns of Tamworth, Stafford, Lichfield and Wolverhampton; and The Potteries and The Black Country. In our churches we have great variety too.

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Suffolk

The idea for Ride+Stride started in Suffolk, and Suffolk has consistently headed the table of funds raised. Last year, the Suffolk Historic Churches Trust Sponsored Bike Ride raised over £137,500, with 3,000 people of all ages cycling around the churches of Suffolk, 728 of which were open and manned.

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Surrey

Ride+Stride is a fun way to spend time on a pleasant afternoon in September while at the same time supporting a very worthy cause. Why not make up a group and join in this year? There are suggested routes to follow, including one around churches in the centre of Guildford, another around Wonersh, and a third covering 43 churches in mid Surrey.

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Sussex

The event is fairly unique in that there is no fixed route, encouraging people to explore parts of Sussex that they may not normally see. In Sussex there are over 600 churches involved, some of them almost a thousand years old. A large number of the churches provide refreshments which are freely available to those who take part.

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Warwickshire

If you would like a suggested route, the WHCT have developed several that have been researched to provide scenic enjoyment and the avoidance of major roads. These are spread out all over the county so you should find one near you. For the more adventurous it is possible to link up one or more rides together.

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Wiltshire

Wiltshire is an ideal county for Riding or Striding. In the big towns like Salisbury, Swindon, Chippenham or Trowbridge you can visit several churches in a short space of time; or you can opt for tranquil side roads that take you through beautiful countryside to picturesque villages with the church standing proudly at the centre.

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Worcestershire & Dudley

A new Towers and Spires cycling and walking guide can help you make the most of Ride+Stride in Worcestershire. If cycling doesn’t appeal to you, other forms of transport are equally acceptable; walkers, runners, horse riders, and those using public transport can also join in.

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Yorkshire

Many of the region’s best loved churches, chapels and meeting houses will be opening up their doors to visitors on Saturday 9th September 2017. Why not plan a route and visit churches you have never been to before, getting sponsored to do so, and help us raise much needed funds along the way.

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Ride+Stride

The idea behind Ride+Stride is to visit as many places of worship as possible open near you and also get sponsored for visiting them. In 2015 Ride+Stride raised almost £1.5 million for churches. The sponsorship money you raise is shared 50/50 between a county church trust that helps historic churches and the individual church of your choice. To get involved contact your local church or county church trust, or visit the Ride +Stride website.

Ride+Stride

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