Walkers to retrace Wordsworth's steps in Cumbrian Fair Trade hike

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Walkers will retrace the steps of William Wordsworth along the daffodil-covered banks of Ullswater which inspired his most famous work.

The group will set out from Pooley Bridge to Grasmere on Easter Sunday, 215 years to the day since William's sister Dorothy wrote about the daffodils at Glencoyne, which influenced his poem I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud, commonly known as Daffodils.

The walk, led by Graham Hulme, is taking place as part of the International Festival of Fair Trade Walks, which runs until April 30 and this year takes on a literary theme.

William and Dorothy had stumbled across this host of daffodils on their way home from visiting their friend and slave trade abolitionist, Thomas Clarkson, at Eusemere, Pooley Bridge.

The route will follow parts of the Ullswater Way and then continue up to Grizedale Tarn and down to Grasmere, where the walkers will be welcomed by a reception at Wordsworth’s former home, Dove Cottage.

Bruce Crowther, founder of the worldwide Fair Trade Town initiative will be taking part in the walk.

He highlighted the connection between the Fair Trade campaign today and the slave trade abolitionists of the past.

“The slave trade abolitionist message was, ‘it is simply immoral that people should be allowed to suffer in order to provide us with luxuries such as tea, coffee and sugar at a cheap price’ and sadly that message is still true today," he said.

"There are people in Ghana growing cocoa for our chocolate that do not have access to clean drinking water and this is simply immoral. We can change this however, by buying Fair Trade products.”

The Pooley Bridge to Grasmere route will form a new branch of the Fair Trade Way, which, over the past eight years, has been extended by volunteers in Keswick to link it to Carlisle and onward along Hadrian’s Wall to Brampton.

In 2009 campaigners completed a six-day walk along the Fair Trade Way from the world's first Fair Trade town Garstang, Lancashire, to Keswick.

The aim was to kick-start a network of footpaths around the country where walkers could eat, drink and sleep Fair Trade, using products such as tea, coffee, chocolate and energy snacks and stay in Fair Trade accommodation when available.

Other walks will take place in Yorkshire, Scotland, Wales, Lebanon and India to further publicise the role that Fair Trade can play in improving our world.

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