The word "ramblers" has come up in UK news reports regarding to the property in the UK owned by Madonna and her husband. CNN uses the word "walkers".
Is this the same as "hikers" or would it refer to a wider range of pedestrian perambulatory pursuits?
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Spehro Pefhany

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The word "ramblers" has come up in UK news reports regarding to the property in the UK owned by Madonna ... word "walkers". Is this the same as "hikers" or would it refer to a wider range of pedestrian perambulatory pursuits?

Inn the UK, serious walkers (those wearing proper boots, and haversacks US "backpacks" containing a cagoule and sandwiches) are likely to belong to the Ramblers' Association (not sure about that apostrophe if inappropriate, going free to a needy greengrocer) which takes walking and hiking very seriously and, among other activities, campaigns to keep open any footpaths which might be in danger of closure by unsympathetic new landowners or for other reasons.
"Hiking" generally involves rough terrain, hills, rocks, careful reading of a map, the use of a compass, and some eschewing of footpaths; "walking" is a less hazardous and more, indeed, pedestrian pursuit, and at a pinch can be done in shoes and occasionally even sandals.

Katy Jennison
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The word "ramblers" has come up in UK news reports regarding to the property in the UK owned by Madonna ... word "walkers". Is this the same as "hikers" or would it refer to a wider range of pedestrian perambulatory pursuits?

See:
http://www.ramblers.org.uk/info/ramblers/aboutus.html

GC
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The word "ramblers" has come up in UK news reports ... it refer to a wider range of pedestrian perambulatory pursuits?

See: http://www.ramblers.org.uk/info/ramblers/aboutus.html

Yet another coinage of the advertising industry in its struggle against the English class system . . . Walking for pleasure was traditionally a recreation only of men of the wealthy and leisured classes.
In 1918-39, in order to increase weekend traffic,
British railways promoted "rambling excursions"
to get townsmen to travel out for a day-long walk
in the country including their families i.e. for the first time women and children too. The
word "rambler" was probably chosen in order to
differentiate this from "walker," who was either
trudging to work or a gilded youth out to win a bet.

Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs (Ottawa, Canada)
The word "ramblers" has come up in UK news reports ... it refer to a wider range of pedestrian perambulatory pursuits?

Inn the UK, serious walkers (those wearing proper boots, and haversacks US "backpacks" containing a cagoule and sandwiches) ... less hazardous and more, indeed, pedestrian pursuit, and at a pinch can be done in shoes and occasionally even sandals.

As Katy hints, "rambler" is an apposite label in the case of this Madonna stuff, because the latter is attempting to do something which the Ramblers' Association was explicitly formed to combat restricting access to the countryside. British walkers don't usually describe themselves as ramblers unless it's this campaigning side which they have in mind. In fact, many serious walkers find the activities of the Ramblers' Association a bit counter-productive, and its membership has suffered in recent years.
"Hiker" isn't used much nowadays; the kind of thing Katy describes above is, in my experience, usually described as "hill-walking" here. I wouldn't say that we hill-walkers eschew footpaths particularly, but then the majority of the routes in hilly districts are "tracks" rather than "footpaths", so technically she's right. "Walking" is a very wide-ranging term, covering the sedate stuff Katy describes at one extreme and at the other the long-distance footpaths and tracks (US = trails) which have grown in popularity over the last forty years.

Mike Barnes is your man on this stuff, and will be along shortly to contradict me.
Matti
Inn the UK, serious walkers (those wearing proper boots, and haversacks US "backpacks" containing a cagoule and sandwiches) ... to keep open any footpaths which might be in danger of closure by unsympathetic new landowners or for other reasons.

You translate "haversack," but leave us to figure out for ourselves what a "cagoule" is? Fine. I'm guessing it's a melon, spiked with vodka.

SML
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The word "ramblers" has come up in UK news reports regarding to the property in the UK owned by Madonna ... word "walkers". Is this the same as "hikers" or would it refer to a wider range of pedestrian perambulatory pursuits?

Probably an explicit reference to the Ramblers' Association, or to those involved in campaigning activities similar to theirs. From :
The Ramblers' Association is Britain's biggest organisation working for walkers, a registered charity with 139,000 members across England, Scotland and Wales. We've been looking after Britain's footpaths and defending its beautiful countryside for more than 65 years by
* protecting Britain's unique network of public paths all too often, they are illegally blocked, obstructed and overgrown. We work with local authorities to make them a pleasure to walk on. * providing information to help you plan your walk and enjoy it in safety and comfort.
* increasing access for walkers our work is helping to establish statutory rights of access to our countryside.
* safeguarding the countryside from unsightly and polluting developments so that walkers can enjoy its tranquillity and beauty.
* educating the public about their rights and responsibilities and the health and environmental benefits of walking so that everyone can enjoy our wonderful
The word "rambling", to me, indicates walking of a more leisurely nature than "hiking". The average age of RA members is probably well over 50 (NTTAWWT), and while many probably complete long-distance paths or ascend mountains, most don't. I used to be member.

Mike Barnes
Cheshire, England
Spehro:
The word "ramblers" has come up in UK news reports regarding to the property in the UK owned by Madonna and her husband.

Well, since it's Madonna we're talking about, "rambler" must mean dildos.
Sara Lorimer typed thus:
Inn the UK, serious walkers (those wearing proper boots, and ... of closure by unsympathetic new landowners or for other reasons.

You translate "haversack," but leave us to figure out for ourselves what a "cagoule" is? Fine. I'm guessing it's a melon, spiked with vodka.

It's a lightweight rain-proof outer garment with a hood, which you don by pulling over the head. Rather like a hooded sweatshirt with no zip, but usually made of thin nylon or rayon or something similar. They can be rolled up tight and stowed into the hood or a separate bag and are suitable for carrying in case of rain as they are not too heavy and don't take up much space.

David
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