I’m an Ordnance Survey #GetOutside Champion!

I’m an Ordnance Survey #GetOutside Champion!

I’m still in a state of shock! Every year Ordnance Survey nominates a selection of people to be #GetOutside Champions; ambassadors for the outdoors tasked with inspiring people to get out and have some fun. I applied last year, but when I saw the 2016 champions, it was obvious that I was out of my league. Similarly, this year I applied again, with little hope of getting any further. Among the 2016 champions are people who I look up to and I never thought for one second that I could ever be among them.

It just goes to show, you should never do yourself down, or think that you’re not good enough.

After reading the email from OS I was completely overwhelmed and quite emotional. I never thought for one second that it would happen. I’ll be glad to see the back of 2016, but my god, 2017 is looking pretty damn good!

A selfie of a mother and father out walking in the countryside, the mum has their baby on her back in a carrier

Local family adventures rank highly on my agenda for this year

I already had lots of ideas and plans to kickstart the new year, including the relaunch of my blog (what do you think?), a charity walking challenge and an adventure in Poland just for starters. But now there is so much more to get excited about.

After the initial shock died down, I was overcome with sudden doubt. This is massive. What if I’m not up to it? Being a #GetOutside champion is a big responsibility.

But rest assured, after a little pep talk to myself, I’m very much up to the challenge. Afterall, being an OS #GetOutside Champion is a natural continuation of what The Helpful Hiker is already doing. I’ve decided to just keep doing what I know and love.

There’ll still be plenty of accessible and affordable outdoor adventures that anyone can do. I have a few big ideas for this year, but in between there’ll be plenty of family strolls and mini adventures. I’m as focused as ever on inspiring people to explore their local area and find new places to enjoy the outdoors.

What are your outdoor plans for this year? I’d love to hear about the adventures you have lined up.



  • Mark (hillexplorer) Mark (hillexplorer) January 13, at 08:27

    Well done to you! Although there’s a part of me that’s thinking ‘s’not fair, I wanna be an outdoor champion too!’ πŸ™‚

    • The Helpful Hiker The Helpful Hiker January 13, at 13:58

      That’s how I felt last year! Your blog is very inspiring though so don’t feel too bad πŸ™‚

  • Zoe at Splodz Blogz Zoe at Splodz Blogz January 13, at 09:23

    Well done! I’m with you… I wonder what on earth OS are thinking in actually picking me when I look at the list of other Champions, but there must be a reason. I’m hoping that the fact we are everyday outdoors people (and not super super professional adventurers – I love reading their stories but they are way out of my league) means we are seen as being accessible ambassadors who can prove it’s possible for everyone to get outdoors more. See you at OS at the end of month!

    • The Helpful Hiker The Helpful Hiker January 13, at 13:49

      Exactly! I’m all about accessible. Can’t wait to finally meet you and all the others πŸ™‚

  • Clare Clare January 13, at 11:29

    Yay! Well done. A fabulous opportunity, I hope you enjoy every minute.

    • The Helpful Hiker The Helpful Hiker January 13, at 13:48

      Thanks, I haven’t been this excited or motivated in a long time. I will make the most of every second πŸ™‚

  • Sarah - Craft Invaders Sarah - Craft Invaders January 13, at 12:09

    I am so pleased that you are one of the #GetOutside Champions this year Lauren – I also feel that I am fighting in the ‘ordinary people’s’ corner but that is why I feel so proud to be part of it too, Here’s to 2017!

    • The Helpful Hiker The Helpful Hiker January 13, at 13:47

      Ah thanks, can’t wait to get together with all the other champions. I was genuinely daunted to begin with as I am definitely one of the ‘ordinary people’, but then I thought that must be what they liked. So going to stick with what I know! Looking forward to meeting you on the 26th πŸ™‚

  • MrsJonesWalks MrsJonesWalks January 13, at 21:02

    Congratulations, and I’m loving the new look.

  • Jonathan Jonathan January 13, at 21:40

    Well done – that’s so exciting! πŸ™‚

  • Lucy Lucy January 14, at 14:43

    That’s awesome- good for you! Look forward to following your outdoor adventures this year πŸ™‚

  • You’re going to be amazing as a Get Outside ambassador, Lauren! Well done for getting through too (I’m hoping another year of my newbie blog will help me to get through next year! Fingers crossed!)

    Your new blog design is lovely, I really love the layout, style and colours πŸ™‚

    As for outdoor plans for this year, I’m hoping that I will be able to hit around the 4000 miles this year as well as keeping up with my morning and evening miles. We are in the process of planning our other adventure (making sure we have care for the cats!) but I’m sure I’ll post about them when we know what we’re up to πŸ™‚

    Where in Poland are you visiting? That sounds exciting!

    • The Helpful Hiker The Helpful Hiker January 19, at 08:30

      Thanks so much, and thanks for your kind words about my website-it was a massive leap into the unknown for me so I’m glad it worked out so well! As for Poland, we’re going to Zakopane in the south for a few days and then getting overnight train up to the north for a family wedding. Just need to get it all booked now! Can’t wait to read more about your outdoor adventures this year.

  • Meandering Wild Meandering Wild January 16, at 16:18

    Well done! Such a great opportunity for 2017! Enjoy all your adventures this year!

  • Maria Maria January 16, at 16:29

    Congrats! The site looks great and I look forward to visiting again!

  • Elizabeth Elizabeth January 17, at 07:32

    Congratulations, and well deserved! This year I hope to do a lot more camping and outdoor adventuring. I’d like my primarily food based blog to feature more outdoor recipes.

  • Mary Mary January 19, at 00:44

    Congratulations! Yes, it might be a bit daunting but I’m sure it will be fun πŸ™‚


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