'Peaks of Colour' is an informal Peak District walking club by and for people of colour based in Sheffield (and surrounding areas). Our walks run once a month, across classic Peak District locations such as Kinder Scout, Lady Bower and Derwent Reservoir, The Monsal Trail and more.
Our monthly adventures vary between difficulties, to appeal to adventurers of a range of abilities and accessibility needs. We are child-friendly, and pet friendly, and our only ask of members is that they commit to ensuring the group remains a safe space for all people of colour. We are an intersectional, inclusive space and welcome those of all cultures, faiths, ethnicities, ages, abilities, sexualities, and gender identities. Our only rules are to have fun, make friends, uphold a zero-tolerance policy on bigotry of any kind, and ensure that we remain a place of safety and solidarity – the outside world tries to tear us down enough.
We announce each expedition via our closed Facebook group - this is the only way we share these details in order to ensure a private space.
This project was inspired by groups such as Black Girls Hike and Black Men Walking, and the growing research on the underrepresentation of people of colour in natural spaces which state that:
Only 1% of visitors to UK national parks come from “BAME” backgrounds (Campaign to Protect Rural England - 2019)
Just 26.2% of Black people spend time in the countryside, compared with 44.2% of white people (Natural England, 2017)
People from Asian communities are least likely to visit the natural environment (Campaign to Protect Rural England - 2017)
Peaks of Colour aims to break down some of the barriers to people of colour which in turn exclude us from the widely documented mental health benefits of being in natural spaces. Founded on the Black Feminist concept of Radical Self Care, we believe that as people of colour, we can not look after others (be that at an individual or community level) if we do not prioritise our own wellbeing. We therefore strive to offer a reprieve from an ongoing socio-political climate which continues to perpetrate racial trauma, stress, and harm on minoritized, racialised groups.
Whilst this is a group for people of colour only, we also invite and encourage allies who recognise their privilege to engage with our project. You can donate to our 'POC Fund', a pay it forward scheme where allies who have the capacity and resources, can donate and offer mutual aid and reparations. These donations will be used to remove the financial barriers to accessing the Peaks that some people might face, such as transportation costs, equipment costs or lunch money.