Meet the Team - Walks Around Britain

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Meet the Team

The Walks Around Britain team is a small team of dedicated professionals – all of whom love walking and the outdoors.

Some have their own projects and join with us for a walk or two, whilst others are based at WAB HQ in Yorkshire working on the tv series, the website, social media, live streaming, DVDs and podcasts.

Andrew White  - Presenter, Writer, Senior Editor & Producer

As well as being our lead presenter and producer, Andrew is an in-demand freelance writer, for magazines such as BBC Countryfile, Coast, Discover Britain, Britain, County Life, RAIL, Your Dog, Camping, Lakeland Walker and Walk - the magazine of The Ramblers.  

In addition to magazines, Andrew is currently writing the first of a new series of National Trail guidebooks for Vertibrate Publishing, and has just written the first Walks Around Britain book - which will be available soon.  He's written all three editions of the best-selling AA Guide to Yorkshire, and this year updated the AA's 50 Walks in the Yorkshire Dales walking guide book.

Andrew is one of the Ordnance Survey's #GetOutside Champions for 2021/2, with the aim of inspiring more people to discover the Great British countryside.

Andrew is often called upon to speak at exhibitions, shows and festivals - including the Caravan, Camping and Motorhome Show, the British Tourism & Travel Show and the Manx LitFest.  In 2016 and 2017 he was the main speaker on the Explore Britain stage at BBC Countryfile Live.

And you'll probably hear and see Andrew on BBC Local Radio and Television talking about walking, the great outdoors, dogs and - his other major passion - railways.

Visit Andrew's own website here, follow him on Twitter here and here on Facebook.

Leah Hather  - Presenter

Growing up on a farm in South Yorkshire gave Leah a taste of the outdoor life from an early age - being a tomboy climbing the trees and walking the fields.  In 2009, she graduated from the University of Salford with a BA Hons in Performing Arts.  Leah's interests and hobbies include dancing, especially in Ballroom and Latin, choreographing and reviewing films.

Leah has visited many places in Europe with one of her favourite countries being Malta but Leah's biggest aspiration is to tour around the United States as she has always wanted to visit LA, go to a ranch in Texas and walk down Broadway.  At the moment, though, she is walking around Britain and loving every minute.

Visit Leah's movie review website here and her Twitter feed here

Alan Hinkes  - Presenter

For many in the outdoor world, Alan will need no introduction.  Indeed, many viewers of morning television will recognise Alan, as he is BBC Breakfast's "go to" man for anything to do with climbing.  

And for good reason.

Alan is the first and only Briton to have climbed all 14 of the world’s mountains over 8000m high.

He's going to be joining the Walks Around Britain team for a variety of walks around the country - and is also presenting our Falkland Islands special.

Follow Alan on Twitter here

Claire Maxted  - Presenter

Claire is a journalist and presenter who started on Trail magazine and ended up becoming the co-founder and former editor of Trail Running magazine, the UK's only bi-monthly dedicated to the exciting, adventurous and muddy world of off-road running.

She now has a YouTube channel, Wild Ginger Films, providing off-road running advice, athlete interviews, gear tests and race recces and is also a keen running leader & warm up coach at her local running club, Stamford Striders.

She says, "Running is great, but it isn't for everyone, and the mental & physical health benefits of a good brisk walk in your local countryside shouldn't be underestimated. Walking is the best way to start your journey to fitness.

Follow Claire on Twitter here

Eli Bishop  - Presenter

Eli is a Mountain Leader, Outdoor Instructor, Mental Health Advocate, Writer and Public Speaker.  Following a breakdown and diagnosis of Anxiety, Depression and PTSD, managing her mental health on a daily basis is a huge challenge with the pressures life brings.

Accessing the outdoors and walking every day has changed her life.  An Ambassador for Ordnance Survey, Merrell and the charity Mind she works to encourage others to access the outdoors for both physical and mental health.

Eli has travelled all over the UK an Europe and walked many paths but is continually seeking out walks that are accessible for many, not the few, believing that ’everyone has their own mountain to climb and every step towards that is an achievement’.

Follow Eli on Facebook here

Vikkie Lee  - Presenter

Vikkie graduated with a Journalism degree in 2004.  But after a change in career as a retail manager, it wasn't until a decade later when she returned back to her writing roots and created her food blog and YouTube channel, Tastefully Vikkie.

When she's not cooking, you'll usually find Vikkie with her husband and Border Collie, Hans in their 3rd campervan and exploring areas by foot.

But by 2016, she started documenting her own camper van conversion, adventures and DIY jobs on her now multi awarding winning YouTube channel and blog, The Carpenter’s Daughter.  

Vikkie has been featured on BBC One's Right on the Money along with many BBC radio stations across the UK.

Alannah White  - Presenter & Researcher

Andrew's eldest daughter started to be one of his walking companions before the TV series started - appearing on the walks filmed for our YouTube channel.  Now, after many walks is a walking companion she is a presenter in her own right, having filmed a walk on her own for season six with our dog Mac.

She is a member of the Doncaster Youth Council representing Hayfield School and is one of two Members of the Youth Parliament (MYPs) for Doncaster - for which she spoke at the dispatch box at the House of Commons in 2018.

Having being diagnosed with high-functioning autism in 2019, Alannah is a passionate campaigner for a greater understanding of the condition - especially in girls, where the differences in autism between the genders often stops young females getting that all-important early intervention.

Visit Alannah's MYP Twitter feed here

Olivia White  - Presenter

Andrew's youngest daughter started co-presenting walks with her Dad in season four of the television series and is now one of the most common faces on Walks Around Britain.

He passion is dogs - all dogs, but in particular our four Walks Around Britain dogs - Merlin, Mac, Mysti and Mocha.  Youngest dog Mocha is her dog, and she's been training him in agility.  It's been a challenging year - especially seeing as though she's the youngest in the class and she's had to learn what to do as a handler at the same time as training Mocha (most young handlers run an already-trained dog).  However, the hard work paid off, with Olivia and Mocha getting a massive third place in the very first competition she entered - alongside the other adult entrants!

Louise White  - Presenter

Louise is the newest team member - and despite her last name, she's not related to the rest of the of Walks Around Britain family!  She’s worked within the publishing industry for over 18 years and currently produces fantastic content for White Media, working as a celebrity journalist and interviewing some of the most established actors in film and television.

She has also worked as a TV presenter for LB24  presenting her talk show Play It Out to an online audience of over 80k. Louise’s career in publishing started at Time Warner working as an editor for some of the most well-known magazines such as Marie Claire, Wedding and Now.

Her new adventure is now working as a producer on a TV series called Three Blind Mice alongside Warrick Davis and  Simon Dyer.

Colin & Shaun Dobson-Fox  - Presenters

Who better to present their favourite canal walks than Colin and Shaun, who have enjoyed the sailing the rivers and canals and walking the towpaths of the UK for over twenty years.

Colin is an experienced radio presenter and personal trainer, who also writes for canal magazines and enjoys photographing the beauty of canal side landscapes, wildlife, and architecture. He also blogs about mental health issues and living with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

After travelling the world, Colin and Shaun bought their first narrowboat in 2004 and explored the canal network before mooring at Stanley Ferry in Wakefield.  They are now having a brand new narrowboat built and plan to move aboard full-time in the near future.

‘The Foxes’ as they have become known run the popular YouTube channel, Foxes Afloat where they post video blogs documenting their adventures on the canal on their soon to completed new narrowboat ‘Silver Fox’.
Zoë Dawes - Presenter

Having lived and worked around the world for many years, Zoë decided to share some of her adventures on her award-winning blog The Quirky Traveller.  With a quirky take on life and travel, she regularly contributes articles and blog posts for tourism organisations in the UK and around the world - and she won the title ‘Britain’s Best Travel Blogger’ in 2011.

Zoë divides her time between the beautiful countryside in North West England and travel abroad working with a collective of bloggers called Travelator Media.  She delivers Travel Writing, Blogging & Social Media seminars and workshops and also coaches individuals in online marketing.  

Visit Zoë's website The Quirky Traveller.

Fiona Russell  - Presenter

Fiona is a highly qualified journalist of some 30 years, and has worked in newspapers & magazines - but today she is one of the UK’s leading outdoors journalists and the powerhouse behind the multi award-winning blog Fiona Outdoors.

On her blog, she writes extensively about the great outdoors - especially Scotland - and she's also a well-known chatterbox on Facebook and Twitter.  In fact she's so well-known and respected for her blog that few people know her as Fiona Russell but refer to her as Fiona Outdoors.

Visit Fiona's blog Fiona Outdoors and follow her on Twitter here.

Beth Krysta Wilson  - Presenter

Beth is a TV presenter and journalist from Leeds. She graduated with a First Class degree in journalism in 2014, and started working soon after as a presenter at Made in Leeds TV - one of the Walks Around Britain broadcasters.  She now freelances for a number of companies, including William Hill and Arsenal Fan TV.

She loves walking with her puppy Lupo, and thinks the best hike she's ever been on was in the Santa Monica Mountains in LA.  Just wait until she sees the great walks we've got for her on Walks Around Britain...

Visit Beth's Twitter feed here

Our backroom behind the camera team are an important part of the team too...

Dave Thorp - Director of Photography

Dave is one of the UKs leading Directors of Photography and cameramen - and is an established film-maker in his own right.  Having first picked up the film-making bug at a young age, Dave has made the industry his life, and he has now been making films for more years than he will admit to!

Dave's films have have won many awards - both here in Britain and across the world.  In fact, at the last count 22 National and International awards for film and video, direction, editing and cinematography.  He is currently editing a short anti-fracking horror drama he's filmed - which is causing a stir...

As Walks Around Britain's Director of Photography, Dave is responsible for the TV series' visual look and style - which has won plaudits for its cinematic quality.

Follow Dave's own Twitter feed here

Rebecca Clark - Sound Recordist

Rebecca's job is to make the sound recorded on location during the filming of the walks for television as clear and free from unwanted noise as possible.  Sometimes even she can't get the sound perfect whilst on the walks, so she is also responsible for the occasions where we have to re-record the audio for pieces to camera - called in the trade as ADR - and for adding spot effects like footsteps - called in the trade as folleying.

She comes originally from Middlesborough and has a life long love of the countryside.  Rebecca now lives in Barnsley and has three poodles.

Vanessa Clayton - Researcher

Vanessa originally comes from Huddersfield, but now lives in Wakefield.  As with most of the Walks Around Britain team, she's an outdoor person, loving fell-running, trailbike riding and gyhill scrambling.  Her favourite place is out on the Pennines, where you might find her most weekends...

She is responsible - along with Andrew and Alannah - for the detailed information you see and hear throughout each of the Walks Around Britain walks on our television series.  She's also involved in planning and checking the route of the walks too, and also works on the Walks Around Britain radio series and podcast.

Robert Black - Online Editor

One of the original Nova Productions’ backroom boys,
Robert has edited a whole range of productions, from trains and tram documentaries to lingerie presentations!  

An avid walker, Robert is firmly part of the Walks Around Britain team, and uses his vast knowledge of the countryside to edit our TV series with a flair and style all of his own.

Catriona Russo - Sales & Marketing Manager

Catriona originally hails from just outside Rotherham, but fell in love with an Italian walker - and has loved the countryside of both Italy and Britain every since.  

Now, she's leading Walks Around Britain's sales and marketing department, overseeing our commercial opportunities and relationships with our business partners.

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