Health and wellbeing

Funding level: £1,001 to £5,000


THE WHITE HART LINK is an exciting and wide-ranging project which has been set up to create a 50 mile circular walking route linking the five towns of North Dorset.
• uses existing rights of way and quiet lanes
• has the support of the Dorset County Council Countryside Rangers
• will promote this route as a uniting and sustainable focus for the enjoyment, enhancement and protection of the area
• will involve local communities, landowners and enterprises along the route in creating and promoting it
The first link between Stalbridge and Gillingham was “opened” in September 2017. It has been route-marked and is walkable and further improvements are being planned. Work has also started on the next link between Sturmnster Newton and Stourpaine which will be “opened” in November 2017. It is intended that the full 50 mile route, linking Stalbridge, Sturminster Newton, Blandford, Shaftesbury and Gillingham will be completed to a high standard by September 2019.
Over the next two years,
• the White Hart Link will be fully route-marked
• route improvements will be undertaken
• a website and social media presence are being developed.
• the project will engage with local communities and businesses
• the project will encourage projects involved with health, education, heritage, art and tourism associated with the route
The project is a Community Group, led by a committee of volunteers and supported by The Three Rivers Community Partnership which is Charitable Company Limited by Guarantee.

What would funding be used for?
One key aspect of developing the route is to provide top quality signs and information. Placing route-markers is just the first step. Now we need to provide walkers with good information to encourage them to use a part or all of the route and to add to their enjoyment.
1. People are encouraged to use an unfamiliar path when they know something about it. Showing the next place on the route and how far away it is acts as an invitation. For the first link volunteers will erect twelve fingerposts at key points along the route. These will show the White Hart Link logo and the name and distance to next town or village or to a place of interest off the route.
2. We want to encourage walkers on the route to explore and enjoy the area through which they are passing. At each town and village we will erect an illustrative map board showing points of interest and local information. These will be A1 Lectern style. Four are needed on the first link. We have an outline design which will be used for all of these. The detailed designs will be developed from information collected by local groups and drawn up by a local volunteer artist.
12 fingerposts@ £160 each is £1920
4 information boards @ £750 each is £3000
Total £4920

Who would benefit?
Anyone living in or visiting North Dorset and the Blackmore Vale. The White Hart Link will encourage people to become and stay active.
According to The Lancet, about two thirds of adults in the UK are not doing enough physical activity. Walking is easy, free and accessible to nearly everyone, providing there are safe routes.
North Dorset has some delightful countryside. The project aims to make this more accessible to more people. By improving the route and making it easy to follow, our project will encourage less active people to walk or to walk further. This will improve health and well-being for both local people and visitors.

Why vote for this project?
A team of talented and enthusiastic volunteers is ready and waiting to complete the detailed design of information boards and to erect both them and the fingerposts. This will help to make the first link a top notch path and set a high standard for the rest of the project.

Three Rivers Community Partnership - The White Hart Link

Moment of Pride

A dedicated team of walking enthusiasts are working incredibly hard to realise this unique project which is bringing together many community groups to participate in making their dream a reality - a major new opportunity for improving health and well-being through walking in North Dorset.

Location: North Dorset District, United Kingdom