ORGANISERS are gearing up for the Winchcombe Walking Festival which will include some special events for 2012.

The festival, which will be held from Friday to Sunday, May 18 to 20, offers 17 guided walks for all abilities and will have a whole host of knowledgeable guides on hand.

This year the festival will be celebrating Katharine Parr’s 500th anniversary with an insight into Tudor life in and around Sudeley Castle, where she is buried.

Highlights also will include a walk along the Windrush Way from Winchcombe to Bourton passing the remains of ‘lost’ medieval villages, a walk of a section of the Cotswold Way with the National Trail Officers and the opportunity to learn about Winchcombe’s military history during the two World Wars.

Secretary Robert Talbot said: “This year bookings are beyond our expectations. With 10 weeks to go we already have some walks full or nearly full. The committee are now exploring increasing the number of walks to meet the demand.”

For details, visit winchcombewelcomeswalkers.

com/festival.