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We are sorry to report the recent death of Margaret Bowdery, a long-standing member of the society who lived in Maidenhead.
Margaret was so shocked at the state of the paths around Maidenhead when she moved here in 1964 that she called a public meeting and launched the East Berkshire Ramblers’ Group. She served as footpath secretary from the group’s inception in 1970 until she retired in 2013.
During that time, she did a prodigious amount of work to secure a better deal for walkers. She ran working parties to clear obstructions and erect signposts and waymarks, she reported countless path problems to the councils and she fought development which threatened paths.
She was responsible for the lovely Temple footbridge over the River Thames in 1989; she campaigned to restore access to Sashes Island, Cookham, in 1991; she won the path beneath the A4 dual carriageway in Maidenhead town centre in 1991, the path beneath the A404 dual carriageway at Bisham in 2005, and the path under Cookham Bridge in 2007—among many other victories.
The redoubtable Margaret must have saved countless walkers from death or injury by securing safer routes, and she has certainly made walking in and around Maidenhead much more pleasant. She also worked with the Open Spaces Society to campaign for paths and common land, for instance together we fought an unlawfully locked gate on Odney Common in 1989.
We are much the poorer for Margaret’s passing, but her legacy is all around us on the paths and commons of East Berkshire, and we shall ensure that she is never forgotten.
For more information about Margaret see here.