Welcome, About Us and Benefits


Website last updated 22nd May 2020
Stephen Wagstaff
1952 - 2020
Sadly, Stephen Wagstaff, affectionately known as ‘Waggy’, passed away on the 5th May after a long illness with throat cancer.

Hill and Mountain Walking Club would like to offer our sincerest condolences and deepest sympathies to all his family and many friends.

Waggy was one of life’s great characters and a much liked and well respected member of Hill and Mountain Walking Club and was a stalwart of the club since September 1994. He was renound for producing a barrel of beer or ‘three’ at many of the club meets and kept us entertained with his musical prowess on a variety of instruments. Give Waggy a musical instrument and he would play it very well in a matter of minutes. He was always the first to sign up on many of the club’s overseas meets and was a much valued member of any party. He was an excellent problem solver and could repair anything; boots, rucksacks, clothing, even feet!

Waggy was a ‘true’ Challenge legend completing 15 coast to coast crossings of Scotland between 1996 and 2016 on The Great Outdoors Challenge.

Before retirement, Waggy was a well respected Electronics Engineer at Airedale General Hospital, near Keighley. If it was broken he could fix it! Waggy was a member of The White Rose Morris Men and could often been seen in his ‘whites’ jingling his bells around the country and even has his own page on their website (Click HERE for 'Wagstaff Appreciation Society'). Waggy was a member of CAMRA and a keen volunteer barman at many of the beer festivals at home and abroad - Waggy did like his beer!

Waggy will be sadly missed, but his memory will still live on within the club, as many stories of his exploits will be told and retold.
Many folk would like to pay their final respects, which will not possible in the current crisis, so a 'digital' Book of Remembrance, has been set up, and can be found by 'clicking‘ HERE.

The book is open for contributions from Waggy's many friends, relatives, groups and individuals. Please send your contributions to info@hmwc.org.uk for inclusion, it will be copied and pasted into this book. Waggy's Book of Remembrance will permanently reside in 'General Interest and Links' for posterity.

Waggy's Funeral Details:
Waggy's funeral will take place at 1pm on Thursday 28th May at Oakworth Crematorium, Bingley Road, Oakworth, BD18 4BG, but unfortunately is restricted to TEN mourners ONLY.

Many close friends and those that live 'local' are going to show their support and respect by standing in the grounds of the crematorium or by the roadside at this time. It may be that some of you may also wish to join them. Social distancing will obviously be still in place!

This is not the way we would want to say farewell to one of our Club's great characters, however there will be a celebration of Waggy's life, when we can all get together once again!



The above ONLY applies to England - Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and The Netherlands have their own government policies, guidelines and laws. Understandably, if anybody crosses any borders the information for that country applies! Basically, within the guidelines, we all have to make our own judgments and assess any risk - Just because we can doesn't mean we should. Remember, every action has a consequence!

There is much information on the internet, some of it being false, but the link below is worth looking at:
  • Guidance on the pandemic from The British Government’s Medical Advisors can be found HERE.
Regarding Hill Walking and Climbing the BMC have put out a statement (12th May), which can be found HERE. However, National Parks and other bodies, Rural and Coastal communities, plus Mountain Rescue have pleaded for people to stay away. Many areas have no car parking facilities and most businesses are closed, especially accommodation. The majority of Mountain Rescue teams have small numbers of personnel, who are all volunteers, with many members employed as doctors and nurses, other occupations in The NHS and a variety of essential front line workers, who may not be available for a 'Call-Out', due to long working days! Please think before stepping out on to the hills and mountains or anywhere, which may lead to a Mountain Rescue Team being called upon!

The majority of people are adhering to the rules, but too have been venturing out during total 'lock-down'. Two interesting facts:
  • Over the 4 day Easter period Mountain Rescue Teams for England and Wales had 20 'Call-Outs'?
  • VE Day Bank Holiday - 8th May, The Coastguards had 97 'call-outs?
In no way can any of us ignore the effects of this pandemic, either at the personal level or the wider global one and the intention of this update is to advise all members of the situation regarding our meets for 2020. It is an ever changing situation, which is being monitored regularly; club meet organisers will be guided by national advice. As a responsible club we have a duty of care to all our members and the general public. According to the government’s medical advisors, this current pandemic is estimated to last for several months. Unfortunately some meets will be either cancelled or postponed to a later date. NO new meets will be scheduled into the programme until the pandemic is over.

More information can be found on the individual meets on the club website (Forthcoming Meets and Events). Further cancellations and postponements are inevitable and will be posted on the website, but in the first instance members will be notified directly.

The organiser of a specific meet will try and get a full refund of the deposit and / or balance, but they are generally dealing with small businesses who will struggle financially the longer the pandemic continues. In some instances, we may get a credit note, so we can hold the meet at a future date. Any meet organiser who is 'out of pocket' will be refunded from club funds.

Unfortunately, we will loose a few meets and some members may loose a small amount of money from cancelled / postponed meets. Personal travel insurance may cover you for some of the losses This is nothing compared to the bigger global picture!

Thank you for your patience and understanding during these difficult times and stay safe.
12th May 2020

In the wise words of Vera Lynn - "We'll meet again, Don't know where, Don't know when, But I know we'll meet again some sunny day!

Welcome to Hill and Mountain Walking Club website, formerly The Over The Hill Club, which is based in the UK. For more details about the club and how to join, please use the page links in the navigation panel on the right-hand side.

These pages are regularly updated, so drop in any time and thank you for taking the time to view the website. It's your website; your news and views are always very welcome, so if you'd like to contribute, please do not hesitate to contact us at the E-mail address below:

In November 1989 The Over the Hill Club was formed through the coming together of a group of friends with 'Challengers', those participants of the Ultimate Challenge, now The Great Outdoors Challenge, coast to coast back-packing event across Scotland. The club was set up to keep like minded people together, to spend more time in each others company, enjoying the hills, mountains, friendships and the occasional drink, which had initially brought them together. The club has since grown and is affiliated to the British Mountaineering Council.

The aims of the Club are to provide the kindredship of the hills and to promote the awareness of and conservation of wilderness areas. Members must be proficient hill people, over 18 years old, interested (some fanatical) in taking to the hills and mountains in all kinds of weather where we enjoy the beauty of the landscape and endeavor to protect it. Members live in all parts of the UK, so we are a national club or should that be an international club, as in recent years we have welcomed new members from abroad.

The club has a varied programme of about six weekend meets throughout the year in all parts of Britain and typically between 15 and 45 people attend. We tend not to organise walks, apart from at the AGM, but split into smaller informal groups. Some meander, whilst others attempt longer and more serious routes. Accommodation is normally in bunkhouses, hostels or camping, with an emphasis on low cost, so nobody is turned away on price.

We also hold international meets all over the world in places such as Morocco, Poland, The Dolomites, Corsica, Slovenia, Nepal, the Austrian, French, Italian and Swiss Alps and even Holland. In 2001 a small party reached the summit of Mont Blanc, which was no mean achievement considering the weather and avalanche risk.

Today the club has in the region of 100 members, with about half the membership having over 20 years with the club, which is a great testament to the success of the club. The members come from all 'walks of life', with quite diverse backgrounds and varying views on life. As one member puts it, the "Hill and Mountain Walking Club is a club for un-clubable people, who enjoy the hills." Within the club there is a wealth of knowledge and experience of the hills, which is all past on freely to younger, newer or less experienced members. Some members hold many formal outdoor qualifications, such as Summer / Winter Mountain Leader Awards, compleatists of all the Munros and / or the Corbetts, ex Mountain Rescue Team Members, walked and climbed in all parts of the world, including The Alps and Himalayas. The club membership, as a whole, have well over 600 coast to coast 'Challenge' crossings of Scotland.

The patron of the club is Hamish Brown, the well known mountaineer, writer and photographer and to him we owe a great deal; without him dreaming up the Ultimate Challenge, we would not have the 'Hill and Mountain Walking Club' today.

BMC third party insurance, whenever you are out on the UK hills.
Join like minded people and share The Great Outdoors.
A wealth of knowledge, which is freely available.
* Members can join any Club meet, if not full.
Receive regular Club newsletters and information.
Discounts at many retailers, due to BMC affiliation.
* The Club  is affiliated to the BMC,  therefore members are entitled
    to utilise other affiliated club’s huts and huts owned directly by the
    BMC or  MCoS ( 'Click'  HERE  for a list of all these huts ) for group
    bookings and in some  cases by individual members or small group
    bookings.  If  anyone should be interested  in visiting  any of  these
    locations  they  should,  firstly  contact  John  Donohoe  to  express
    their interest.

Click the underlined link above to see the many discounts