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back to Book Reviews

Coast to Coast with Wainwright
by Alfred Wainwright with photographs by Derry Brabbs.
Published by Frances Lincoln. ISBN: 9780711229341.

Coast to Coast with WainwrightIn 1973, following many months of research, AW compiled his book of the walk he had devised from St. Bees on the Cumberland coast to Robin Hood’s Bay on the Yorkshire coast. This was entitled A Coast to Coast Walk and in the intervening thirty-five years it has become the most popular walk in the UK, and is ranked the second most popular walk in the world after Milford Track in New Zealand.

In 1987, after working together on two previous books, AW and Derry Brabbs collaborated together on a coffee-table version of Wainwright’s Coast-to-Coast Walk, which became another mega bestseller for the pair.

Now, twenty-one years later, Derry has retaken photographs of the entire route and has included several new scenes that were not in the previous edition. He has also added some minor changes to the text where rights of way have altered. Comparing this new edition with the original, I noticed several of the new pictures are magnificent double- page spreads, there are 30% more pages in the book and there is an overall increase in its size. The result is the transformation of an already fine book into something spectacular. This now makes it not merely the most beautiful but also the most authoritative book on the much-loved Coast-to-Coast walk. This book is for armchair reading and the original Pictorial Guide is the one to be carried on the walk, the new revision of which is being worked on by Chris Jesty this year and is expected to be published in 2010.

Even if, like me, you bought the original twenty-one years ago, it is still worth investing in this new spectacular edition.

reviewed by John Burland - Member No. 2