Walk Report Archive for 2014

To access a specific report press the Index link.




St Leonards – Tuesday 16 December 2014

St Leonards Warrior Square railway station sits neatly between the portals of the tunnels through which one arrives and leaves.  It is a striking setting and a tribute to Victorian engineering.  The platforms are exactly eight coaches long.  From the station our group of five, led by Chris Smith, began our exploration of the town.  Having traversed Warrior Square we arrived at the sea front where we discovered the statue of Queen Victoria with a bullet hole through her dress at knee level.  The damage occurred in WWII but exactly how and when is not known.  Also on the seafront is an original Banksy, protected by the local council by a plastic sheet.  Walking west we came upon the domineering Marine Court, a Deco style block of apartments that was the tallest block of flats in England when built in 1937.  St Leonards owes its existence to one James Burton who purchased land here in 1828 and proceeded to develop the area as a watering hole for the rich folk from London who came down on the new turnpike roads.  This was an exclusive place and the buildings reflect this. Of many notable buildings, it is only possible to mention a few, including the Royal Victoria Hotel, St Leonard’s Church, the Clock House on the side of St Leonard’s Garden and the house where Alan Turing grew up in.  Not all of St Leonards is as grand as this and we were shown parts that have seen some hard times and parts that are on the up, or being “gentrified”, if you like.  After an excellent lunch at the Little Larder we found our way back to the station along the main shopping street which could definitely do with a bit of “gentrification”.  The weather was perfect with a clear blue sky and a bright warm sun.  This had been a very enjoyable, very different walk. Pictures by Graham.


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Not Amused

Not vandalism?

Clock house, looking like a church.


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Alan Turing’s boyhood home                

Marine Court, trying to look like an ocean liner




Stroll Firle to  Charleston – Wednesday 10 December 2014

It was a nice sunny day when a 3 mile stroll took place from Firle to Charleston and back.  Setting out across Firle Park towards Heighton Street the party encountered 2 recently ploughed fields, which had not been rolled out by the farmer, and a very muddy track on the approach to Charleston.  However the availability of the coffee shop and toilets at Charleston enabled the party to relax before returning on the newly signed permissive path from Charleston to the old coach road which was then followed back to Firle. These recently introduced strolls to the Footpaths Group's programme ate proving popular with some of the older members particularly when a convivial lunch can be taken in a public house at the end.



Coleman’s Hatch -  Sunday 7 December 2014

We ventured to the edge of the Ashdown Forest for our ramble.  We started from The Hatch Inn at Coleman’s Hatch and the walk took us along country lanes, across fields and through delightful woods with beds of fallen leaves underfoot.  Through one such wood we came across an old hollow tree where right at the bottom of the trunk was a tiny door complete with keyhole just the right height for the fairies!!  Shortly afterwards we found Pooh Bridge so perhaps there was a link between the two.  After we had played Pooh Sticks we continued on through the wood and then across fields until we emerged back on the lane to the Hatch Inn.  Twelve of us enjoyed the winter ramble led by Clare and Graham took these pictures.      


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Owl’s House?

What No Sticks?




Stroll Lewes Racecourse & Mount Harry – Tuesday 25 November 2014

The Group held one of their monthly strolls of about three miles walking part of the old Lewes Racecourse on to Mount Harry and returning over Offham Hill and finishing at the bottom of Highdown Road. Although the weather was dull with some slight rain, the visibility was good thus the strollers were able to enjoy the interesting landscape including a part of the South Downs, for a full view of 360 degrees.  The strolls, a fairly recent innovation, are proving to be very well supported.



Balsdean Valley – Tuesday 18 November 2014

After several days of rain, happily it remained dry for our Tuesday walk.

12 of us set off from the car park at Woodingdean up Bullock Hill and then followed the lovely path which winds gently around the contours of the downs into Standean Bottom.  We had a look at the plaque which marks the site of the old Norman church and then took our coffee break by the old farm buildings.  We continued through Balsdean Bottom and then climbed steadily up to the South Downs Way which we followed for a mile or so before taking the gentle descent down Newmarket Hill and Drove Avenue back to the car park.  This walk is featured in our publication “ Favourite Walks in and around Lewes” available at the Tourist Office.



Blackboys – Sunday 9 November 2014

This Sunday we enjoyed a very muddy walk around Blackboys.  Thankfully, it didn’t rain and it was surprisingly warm in the sun. After leaving the village via the allotments we took a path through Tickerage Wood before following the Wealdway   to the South of the village, stopping on the way for a coffee break overlooking the beautiful lake at New Place Farm . After crossing the B2192 we followed a lane which joined the Vanguard Way and followed this long distance path which took us back to Blackboys right opposite the lovely old Sussex Blackboys Inn.



Ardingly Reservoir – Sunday 26 October 2014

Ardingly Reservoir was our meeting place for a 5 mile walk on Sunday 26th October . We started from the car park and soon followed the Kingfisher Trail along the reservoir perimeter path. We followed this path for some time before leaving it to take an uphill path to Edmunds Farm and a road which led us into a beautiful woodland path carpeted with recently fallen leaves.  This downhill path led us down to a finger of water at the northern end of the reservoir and this was crossed by a quite spectacular footbridge rather reminiscent of crossing a ravine by a rope bridge although this one was wooden and quite stable.!  Leaving the bridge we were soon walking alongside  the perimeter fence of Wakehurst Place and gardens and then on to the path at the back of the South of England Showground.


After passing Ardingly Church we followed a lane which soon took us back to a downhill path back to the reservoir.  This was a lovely  Autumn walk and enjoyed by 30 of us.


Plumpton – Tuesday 21 October 2014
Clare led a different walk at Plumpton on 21st October and 13 people joined her.  In perfect walking weather she started the walk down East View Fields before crossing the railway line  and then into fields with very friendly ponies. After crossing more fields Streat Lane was reached .Before turning into a lane by the Church, Streat Place, was much admired.  This magnificent building was built by Walter Dobell in the early 17th Century.   The walk continued in the direction of the Mid-Sussex Golf course until following paths back to Plumpton.  The walk ended in Riddens Lane, a short distance from the Fountain Pub which is where we had lunch before catching the bus back to Lewes.


Arundel to Goring - Wednesday 15 October 2014
Often the Group use public transport to and from their walks and recently a party took the train to Arundel to walk from there to Goring where they caught the train back to Lewes. At Arundel the noisy and busy A 27 was soon left behind as the party made their way across numerous stiles past Broomhust Farm to Lyminster, the first of three villages with interesting buildings where the houses were mainly of an executive nature. Taking the byway to Poling a picnic lunch was eaten in the churchyard before going on along the edge of a recently ploughed and muddy field to Angmering. From here a very gradual ascent was made to Highdown Hill where excellent views were obtained both towards the sea and inland. Time did not allow a stop at the gardens or tea shop there, although at least one member said that she would come back to do so, before descending the hill, crossing the busy A 259 road and proceeding by footpath to Goring railway station. Despite a poor weather forecast the party only experienced a short shower on Highdown Hill and otherwise the day had proved very suitable for walking.


North Chailey - Tuesday 16 September 2014
Fifteen members enjoyed this Tuesday morning walk at North Chailey. We helped the environment by leaving our cars at home and taking the 121 bus from Lewes to North Chailey. Having safely crossed the A272 we entered Chailey Common and took well trodden paths in a general northerly direction to emerge near the new housing estate at New Heritage. After some lane walking we took a rough track beside Mascalls Farm, crossed fields keeping an eye on the cows lazing in the sun and heard the whistle of a train on the Bluebell Railway not far away. The footpath took us through the massive Wowo campsite on Wapsbourne Farm. It was full of tents and visitors when the leader checked out the walk earlier but now fairly quiet as the children have gone back to school. As we left Wowo we debated the age of a fine manor house deciding it must be Elizabethan and made a fuss of two friendly donkeys who were eager to talk. Being about the half way point we stopped beside a wood for drinks and a chat. After skirting the edge of several fields and negotiating a couple of very difficult styles we hit Blackbrook lane for more lane walking and several shouts of ‘car coming’. Eventually a welcome footpath took us into the woods and on to the Common. We stopped for a while to search for wildlife at a pond and further on to view the windmill at old Heritage. Back at the A272 the group split with some heading to the Kings Head for a quick drink while the others took a 15 minute final loop on the Common with most of us meeting up for the 1pm bus back to Lewes.


Fletching - Sunday 7 September 2014
It was a beautifully warm and sunny day when twenty members of the group walked a circular route from the village of Fletching through Newick via Sharpsbridge.

The route took us across fields, some of which were high with corn (on the cob!) in some places reaching about 7ft high, and could be mistaken for an African jungle. Fortunately all the paths were very well trodden so there was no risk on getting lost!

The route then took us along a high meandering path along the River Ouse eventually crossing a stile into a field, which led us up to Newick Churchyard. From there we walked into Newick Village and enjoyed a pleasant and welcome break.

Suitably refreshed we carried on back across the A272 and through a small housing estate to rejoin fields leading across a fairly new bridge then back into fields before emerging out onto a lane behind Sheffield Park and walking the half a mile back to Fletching Village.

We all especially appreciated this lovely late summer’s day.


Bishopstone to Alfriston - Tuesday 2 September 2014
Sixteen of us set out from Bishopstone Station and soon found our way to the village which is very quiet and very pretty. From there we began the first climb to the top of The Downs where six paths converge, followed by a steep descent down a slippery path where, at the bottom, we found a new vineyard and large areas of seemingly uncultivated land which were covered in wild flowers such as vetch and clover. . Above, buzzards were calling to each other. Another climb took us to Cross Dyke where we turned east and walked along the top, enjoying views in all directions, before dropping down to Alfriston where four of our group left to catch the bus back to Lewes. After suitable sustenance, the remainder of us crossed the Cuckmere River and followed its valley northward, joining the Wealdway after an unpleasant few minutes walking along the A27. At Arlington Reservoir we found our way to Berwick train station with just enough time to purchase tickets for the journey home. Blackberries were seen in abundance and many picked, as were some sloes, which “slowed” us all down. It only got too hot to walk at the end, otherwise it was pretty well perfect walking weather.


Glynde - Sunday 24 August 2014
It was a pleasant morning – bright and reasonably warm, with little wind – when a group of 20 walkers assembled at North Street car park for Sunday’s walk. No need on this occasion for details of the route to our starting point – this was it.

We set off down the hill and along Cliffe High Street to the bottom of Chapel Hill. This steep ascent soon found us at the Golf Club at the top of the hill ready to start our trail across the Downs. We took the path skirting the golf club for a short distance, then turned off onto the gently descending track to Oxteddle Bottom. We stopped to admire some rather rare and modest orchids (autumn ladies tresses), as well as the spectacular round-headed rampion, a feature of this area.

Caburn Bottom joins Oxteddle Bottom by the dew pond – and this is where we stopped for a short break, enjoying the views of the Herdwick sheep scattered across the hillside apparently in siesta mode (this early in the day? – but they’d probably started chomping grass at the crack of dawn so were due for a rest).

We then started the long gradual climb up to the track that links Ringmer to Mount Caburn. It was all downhill from here, in the best possible sense, to reach Glynde by the village post office, and after a short walk through this delightful village, our lunch destination, the Trevor Arms.

After an hour’s break, enjoying refreshments in the warm sunshine of the pub garden, we set off back to Lewes. We took a different route this time, walking back through the village and picking up the track opposite Glynde Place up to the Ringmer/Caburn track. Turning right, we walked along the ridge of the Downs with views of Lewes in the far distance, branching off left at Saxon Down to the kissing gate marking the entry to the Southerham Nature Reserve. Then it was just a matter of following the path that leads back to the Club House at the top of Chapel Hill. And then that steep descent. Those with dodgy knees are heard to utter a sigh of relief on reaching the terra firma of Cliffe High Street.

Everyone agreed that it had been a lovely walk – and that we were so fortunate to have such excellent weather, bearing in mind that bank Holiday Monday’s forecast was dire (and indeed turned out to be accurate). The walk was led by Vivien



Ditchling Stroll - Tuesday 19 August 2014
Our strolls seem to be popular with everyone and this one led by Robert Cheesman visited Ditchling on a very pleasant day. Starting from the car park by the village hall, the party first went South on footpaths towards the Nye before turning north to the recreation ground. Whilst going along part of East End Lane the various architectural styles of the buildings were noted before the party went by footpath to the north end of the village and the path that leads to Lodge Hill and Oldland windmill. In this stretch a lot of people were seen taking advantage of the blackberries.

Having looked at the windmill, where exterior painting was in progress, a short stop was taken to view the excellent panorama of the South Downs from Plumpton Plain to Woolstonbury Hill and in the far distance Chanctonbury Ring. Returning to the village more directly a brief stop was made at the excellent Ditchling Museum whilst the majority of the group then partook of a drink and snack in the Bull Inn.



Lewes to Spain (aka Saltdean) - Tuesday 19 August 2014
Fifteen intrepid LFG members set out from Lewes to walk to Spain, one of the group’s more ambitious day walks. In the process we were lost in a maize maze, passed a vineyard, climbed the high Pyrennes and descended to the Costa, with its Spanish Holywood Moderne Houses. We finished with wine and tapas by the beach.




50th Anniversary Walks - Tuesday 12 August 2014

To celebrate our 50th Anniversary we held series of 10 walks totalling 50 miles. The ten walks of varying length and difficulty were all held on the same day to arrive at about 3:30pm at Lewes Town Hall for tea and buns with the Mayor.

For reports of the individual walks please click here



Ardingly - Wednesday 6 August 2014
Fifteen of us met at Ardingly Reservoir for a lovely walk taking in the spectacular Balcombe Viaduct. The route took us up and down across a varied landscape of fields full of newly harvested bales of hay, farms, wooded copses and beautiful views before descending to pause and admire the remarkable viaduct. We then continued to follow the Sussex Ouse Valley Way along the river and back to the edge of Ardingly Reservoir. An added bonus was an abundance of big juicy blackberries at many points along the way.







Polesden Lacey - Wednesday 23 July 2014
26 members of the Group took part in an outing to the National Trust property at Polesden Lacey. Arriving by 10.30am many members took part in a guided tour of the house before having either lunch in the restaurant or their own picnic. Although the weather was very hot and sunny some 8 members came on a guided walk across the Mole valley to Tanners Hatch youth hostel where one member was able to remember her experience of staying there over 50 years ago. Others preferred to take in Polesden Lacey's beautiful gardens or simply stroll at their own pace in the extensive grounds. Although we did not leave until 4pm many would have preferred to have stayed much longer as it had been such an idyllic day. Thanks to Robert who organised this special coach trip.


Plumpton- Sunday 13 July 2014
This was a walk to the north west of Plumpton, which took us across fields and through ancient woodlands. One of the woods, Blackbrook wood is particularly beautiful at Bluebell time. This time, the fields were particularly beautiful and carpeted with wild flowers. Self Heal, Kidney Vetch, and Common Centaury were all spotted and we even saw some quite rare Ragged Robin in a marshy area. We followed ancient paths, some which still crossed garden outskirts and some which were old sunken paths through the woods which were still muddy even in July. Nineteen members enjoyed this varied walk in fine weather.


Rodmell - Sunday 9 July 2014
Last week, 15 members enjoyed a lovely Summer’s evening walk around Rodmell and Iford . The weather was perfect and the evening finished with a meal at the Abergavenney Arms pub at Rodmell which was enjoyed by all.


Burgess Hill - Sunday 29 June 2014
The day after we returned from the Group's Lancaster holiday, Wolfgang led a five and a half mile walk in the Low Weald area, just South of Burgess Hill . We started at the Friars Oak pub car park in Hassocks and headed West through the grounds of Hassocks Golf Club (beware of flying golf balls!) We followed drives , footpaths and a wide bridleway amongst trees towards the Burgess Hill by-pass. We followed the tarmacked bridle/cycle way path which runs along the Southern side of the road through parkland and out of sight of the road before crossing the A273 and then on to the Low Weald water tower. We eventually reached Oldland Windmill, a beautifully restored 18C working post mill in the heart of the glorious Sussex countryside and on the edge of the village of Keymer. After crossing the London to Brighton railway line we soon found our way back to the Friars Oak pub. Seven people enjoyed the walk, others were recovering from their exertions in Lancaster!


Ovingdean & Undercliffe - Tuesday 24 June 2014
Nine of us took part in last Tuesday’s walk as many of the group were away on the Lancaster holiday. The weather was warm and sunny and we took two buses to East Brighton where we began our walk up a gentle hill beside the golf course with lovely views across East Brighton park to the racecourse. We crossed the golf course and descended into Ovingdean. Walking through the back of the village and past St Dunstans (which has a different name now) we crossed the busy coast by way of the underpass, then went down lots of steps to reach a welcoming café where we stopped for coffee and home made cake, all with a delightful sea view. Suitably refreshed we proceeded along the undercliffe to Brighton Marina. Here we had a choice, some catching the bus back and others continuing the walk along to Brighton. The walk, which was led by Janet, was a rather different one which I think we all thoroughly enjoyed.


Stroll - Tuesday 17 June 2014
Eleven of us, plus a delightful Labrador, took part in Tuesday’s stroll which was led by Janet. We walked through the Priory and then took the service/cycle track towards Kingston then branched off through fields and a pathway cleared through a field of rape. On reaching the garden centre we had time for a cup of coffee before returning along the Cockshut stream, where the Labrador sneaked a crafty swim. We returned to the town centre via the Grange gardens which looked beautiful in the June sunshine.

The addition of Strolls to our Summer Programme has proved to be very popular and are ideal for people who want a shorter and easier walk. New walkers are always welcome to join us.


High Hurstwood - Sunday 15 June 2014
This walk was relocated from Ardingly to avoid the London to Brighton Cycle Race>

On Sunday 15th June, twenty-two members of the Footpaths Group enjoyed a six-mile scenic walk starting from the village of High Hurstwood, near Uckfield. The weather was mainly overcast but fine. We parked near the school and walked along pastures and tree-lined tracks to enter High Hurstwood Nature Reserve. We followed woodland paths and crossed a high culvert over a dramatic, deeply-sunken stream - trickling today, but known to flood after a wet spell and turn into a rushing torrent.

Walking through the green, unspoilt countryside, we stopped for coffee on a grassy slope to admire views of distant hills. Fortunately, few golfers were out whilst we followed the footpath skirting the fairways towards an enclosed path which led us out to the A26 at Poundgate, opposite the Crow and Gate pub. By now, we had gently climbed 450 feet since leaving High Hurstwood.

At one stage, we had to make a detour along the Vanguard Way because a bridge was unpassable which added a little distance - but in no way deterred from the enjoyment of the walk. At times, the footpath led us through gardens, across a field of inquisitive cattle and onto farmland where two friendly lambs made a fuss of us!

As well as the extensive woodlands and forests, what I loved about the walk were the ancient sunken trackways, with high banks of trees on either side. No doubt the heavy Wealden clay would turn to mud during the wet winter months but today they were dry and easy to walk on. We arrived back at the church and our car park by 1.30. The walk was led by Margaret.


Horsted Keynes - Tuesday 27 May 2014
The Bluebell Railway at Horsted Keynes was the starting point for this mid-week walk . The station dates back to the 1880’s and has featured in many films and TV programmes.We started by walking alongside the railway track and then crossed some fields to join the Sussex Border Path. We continued past the imposing Broadhurst Manor, the former home and animal sanctuary of Carla Lane who wrote the TV series of Bread before arriving at St.Giles Church which has provided the final resting place of the former prime minister Harold Macmillan. Lunch was excellent at The Green Man on the village green. 14 people enjoyed the walk led by Clair.


Battle of Lewes Celebration - Saturday 10 May 2014
Some of our members walked over the hill from Glynde to Lewes in appropriate costume, to join King Henry’s army on his way to the Priory as part of the Battle of Lewes celebrations.

Margaret took these photos of the leaders with the banner outside Thomas a Becket Church in Cliffe. .


Graham and Hilda

The Banner



1st Stroll Bramber - Tuesday 22 April 2014
In our new programme of walks for our Spring/Summer programme, we have introduced some strolls which are shorter and easier walks. This was the first of these walks and 10 ramblers enjoyed a 2.5 mile stroll around Bramber. They began at the castle ruins and continued walking along the banks of the River Adur, enjoying some spectacular scenery along the way. The coffee stop enabled them to visit the pretty church of St. Peter. The walk lasted one and a half hours and was enjoyed by everyone. More details of these shorter walks can be found on our website or walking programme which is always available from the Tourist Information Office.


Polegate to Berwick Station - Wednesday 16 April 2014
A dozen of us embarked on the 0944 train to Polegate and the start of the walk. The first stretch took us through the outskirts of the village and over and then under the busy A27 and A22, and it was a relief to reach the path running alongside Ogg’s Wood, full of bluebells and birdsong. After a coffee break at the intersection of the path with Robin Post Lane we continued along a bridleway through Abbot’s Wood, carefully negotiating some muddy sections churned up by riders. After leaving the wood by way of the car park, where some members availed themselves of the facilities including the ice-cream van, a short stretch of road brought us to a footpath across farmland, via some rickety stiles, in the direction of Arlington. Leaving the village on our right we briefly joined the Vanguard Way, crossed the Cuckmere on the Arlington road and then struck across the fields again to Berwick station for our return to Lewes, having enjoyed glorious sunshine and the countryside looking its springtime best.


Ringmer to Barcombe Circular - Sunday 23 March 2014
The mud that has made our walks really difficult over the last few months is gradually drying up and on this walk we avoided it to some extent by taking to the hills.

We started walking from Ringmer Churchyard and made our way across the fields to Upper Stoneham Farm where the Regency Coaches have there depot. We followed the A26 to the Earwig at Malling and then made our way to Malling Nature Reserve. Here our coffee stop was brought to an abrupt halt by a sudden sweep of hail which fortunately didn’t last too long. Climbing to the top of the Downs we enjoyed panoramic views in all directions and the walk along the ridge to Glyndebourne Lane was breathtaking and exhilarating. Crossing the Lane we passed the wind turbine which provides most of the electricity for the Opera House before descending to Ringmer via the outskirts of Gote Farm. An amazing 29 people enjoyed the walk led by Jeannette.


Uckfield to Little Horstead - Wednesday 19 March 2014
Buoyed up by a forecast of sun, which did not materialise, and the promise of spring flowers, which did, 16 members of the group burst out of Lewes on an exploration of the countryside south of Uckfield.

First up was a perambulation through Uckfield’s own Hempstead Nature Reserve, followed by a traverse of a play park, though only one member felt energetic enough to play on the equipment. No one was mown down while crossing the Uckfield to London railway line, before passing by mysterious Hemstead Wood. The pub at Framfield was persuaded to open for us and suitably fortified we walked along footpath Framfield 9, the site of the famous dispute between the landowner and the Ramblers Association. We also walked across the formally obstructed footpaths of Crockstead Manor Hotel, noting the recently installed steps and signposting.

As a finale, we traversed the grandiose edifice and grounds of the Sussex National Golf Resort and Spa where we had a lunch break in a hut before catching the bus at Little Horsted back to Lewes. A very enjoyable walk led by Chris.


Hadlow Down - Sunday 9 March 2014
This walk was the warmest and sunniest day for a walk since last Autumn and 24 people joined Sue and Penny for a ramble around Hadlow Down. We walked down through the lovely Waste Wood which was still very wet, muddy and slippery in places despite the better weather. We walked through country lanes to Hole Farm and returned to the start by following well marked footpaths through open fields and only encountered one stile. Everyone enjoyed the walk and felt better for it.


Plumpton Green - Tuesday 4 March 2014
Ten walkers enjoyed a five and a half mile walk in the Plumpton area on a recent sunny Tuesday morning. From Plumpton Station we took a path parallel with the railway line where we encountered the first of the mud. Soon the footpath took us across the railway line which we crossed with extreme care. We continued through muddy fields then onto an old track which took us past East Chiltington Church, farm buildings and isolated homes. Then we sloshed our way through fields to Novington Lane before returning to muddy fields and our coffee stop. Just before the Half Moon Public House we were entertained by three alpacas on our path. These lovely looking animals stood and stared at us while we passed by wondering what all these humans were doing in their field. At the half way point of our walk we entered the grounds of Plumpton Agricultural College. Heading north we soon returned to muddy fields and footbridges over fast flowing streams. Eventually we came to dry land on the road around Plumpton Race Track managing to clean most of the mud off our boots. A substantial footbridge took us over the railway line completing a most enjoyable muddy walk. This walk which replaced the published walk at Upper Dicker due to flooding was led by Dave


Horam - Sunday 23 February 2014
Our walk at Horam, and unsurprisingly, it started on the Cuckoo Trail, on the track bed of the old railway which once linked Eridge and Polegate. After leaving the Cuckoo Trail we made our way across fields and through woods to Marle Green. As has been the case this winter it was very muddy in places especially around stiles and gates! From Marle Green we made our way to Maynards Green and from there we joined the welcome firmer ground of the old rail track back to Horam.

It was a joy on this walk to see the beginnings of Spring and the wildflowers suddenly appearing despite all the rain and wind. We saw swathes of snowdrops, primroses and violets and the bluebell shoots, inches high, promised the usual blue carpet in the woods. The walk was led by Roy.


Ashdown Forest - Wednesday 19 February 2014
For this walk we started from the Ashdown Forest Visitors Centre and enjoyed the huge views north that take in the valley of the River Medway and the North Downs beyond, before heading east to Coleman’s Hatch through the lovely open scrubland which makes Ashdown Forest such a pleasure to visit. Every walk this year has been muddy and this one was no exception. It was constant, low-level mud which was usually easy to avoid in the forest where paths are generally unconstrained. Walkers with wellies could carry on with little to trouble them. Skirting the golf course, we briefly joined the Vanguard Way before, just outside Forest Row, we headed north for the long, steady climb back to the car park. We heard our first woodpecker drumming in the distance and the great tits were very evident on their “squeaky bikes”. Ten of us enjoyed this walk led by Hilda and Graham.


Fletching - Tuesday 4 February 2014
On Tuesday eleven of us enjoyed a brief respite in the weather for our circular walk starting at Fletching village. The route took us across wide flat fields, which were largely muddy and water-logged, but offered outstanding views of the countryside all around, and eventually we emerged to cross the A272 between Piltdown and Newick. We then followed the trail across more fields through a pretty landscape to Sharpsbridge.

A little way along the lane we turned into fields once more following a high meandering path along the River Ouse and eventually crossing a stile into a field which lead us up to Newick Churchyard. From there we walked into Newick Village and enjoyed a pleasant and welcome coffee break.

Suitably refreshed we carried on back across the A272 and through a small housing estate to rejoin fields leading across a boggy area serviced by a fairly new bridge. Eventually we came out onto a lane behind Sheffield Park and walked the half a mile back to Fletching Village.

A very enjoyable and pretty walk appreciated all the more due to the fine weather. Sally led the walk.


Chailey Common - Sunday 26 January 2014
Eleven walkers were rather hoping that the weather forecast of heavy rain and strong winds would not materialise when they met for a six mile walk around Chailey Common on our last wet Sunday walk. There was no such luck and it turned into one of our wettest walks in recent times! As the ground was already water-logged, most paths were either muddy or swampy.

We started from Pound Common car park and headed west across heathland passing Holford Manor before turning south via Wivelsfield Green to avoid the busy North Common road. The walk continued towards Grassy Wood and Lumberpits and we passed by St. Peter and St. James Hospice. By this time we were extremely wet but there was no way of shortening our walk which would have been appreciated given the conditions.

We eventually made our way back to Pound Common along flooded footpaths and finding the path, amongst the many, criss-crossing the Common, that led us back to the car park. This stimulating walk was ably led by Wolfgang.


Shortgate - Wednesday 22 January 2014
9 members took part in a walk from the Wok Inn at Shortgate recently. Although it was muddy and in places quite waterlogged underfoot no actual floods were encountered and the party were also blessed with fine and not cold weather . Starting from the Wok Inn the party went down a bridleway to Bell Farm and then eastwards to the road junction in North Laughton. The bridleway on part of this stretch had been churned up by horses making it difficult to traverse but there was evidence that chippings are about to be put down to provide a better surface. The party then went eastwards along the byway past Brickhurst Wood, noting the temporary ban of 4 wheel drive vehicles from part of it. They then went north on a path towards Laughton Park Farm, a path where much of the furniture had been installed by the Group over 15 years ago. After passing this farm a long green lane was traversed towards Halland Park Farm, near where a break for coffee took place, before taking the direct footpath to Halland. The return to the Wok Inn then passed Bog Shaw and Shortgate Manor Farm.


Pre-Prandial Stroll Stanmer - Wednesday 15 January 2014
Five walkers defied the weather forecast and enjoyed an invigorating walk on the downs above Stanmer Park before the Footpaths Group’s annual New Year’s lunch at Stanmer House. Above Lower Standean we enjoyed wide views of the inside of the low clouds we were walking in. For a few minutes the clouds disgorged some rain onto us, a paltry amount compared to the forecast, which only served to make the warmth and conviviality of the group’s lunch all the more welcome. Altogether, forty eight members sat down to a splendid lunch.


Housedean to Lewes - Tuesday 7 January 2014
The planned walk from Newick along the banks of the River Ouse was postponed because of all the rain that has fallen. Instead the eight hardy souls who met at the bus station agreed to take the Number 29 bus to Housedean Farm on the A27 and walk back to Lewes over the Downs, starting off along the South Downs Way. The wind was windy but warm and it was a pleasure to be out. In Ashcombe Bottom we enjoyed a short break out of the wind and then the rain arrived, horizontally. Then the rain turned to hail. It was less unpleasant than it might have been because the wind and rain and hail were coming from behind us. Joining the bridleway from Blackcap, we followed it back to Lewes, passing the stables on the way. The bridleway was muddy so we chose the grassy path through Landport Bottom, with its fantastic views over Lewes. When the rain began again in earnest, it was now into our faces from our right. Like the rain, in the distance, the smoke from the incinerator at Newhaven was also being blown horizontally. Arriving back at Lewes the sun came out. Hilda and Graham led the walk which was a good test of our wet weather gear.


Falmer - Wednesday 1 January 2014
Our New Year Walks usually attract more walkers than usual but, unsurprisingly, only 7 hardy souls joined Keith, the leader, for a walk around Stanmer on 1st January. It had started to rain as we left the car park at the Ditchling Road Car Park at the top of Stanmer woods. We made our way through the woods amongst a myriad of paths, some quite steep and slippery, until we reached the recreation grounds at the bottom of the park. Here the full force of the rain and wind hit us and we made our way up to Stanmer village and its welcoming café. Here we enjoyed very welcoming hot drinks before deciding to take a short cut back up to our car park.

  Tree scape at Stanmer Park                        Wet walkers in the cafe



Index of Walk Reports
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Tip: After reading the chosen report press your back button (top left hand corner) to return to the Index.




·         St Leonards – Tuesday 16 December 2014

·         Firle to  Charleston – Wednesday 10 December 2014

·         Coleman’s Hatch -  Sunday 7 December 2014

·         Lewes Racecourse & Mount Harry – Tuesday 25 November 2014

·         Balsdean Valley – Tuesday 18 November 2014

·         Blackboys – Sunday 9 November

·         Ardingly Reservoir – Sunday 26 October

·         Plumpton – Tuesday 21 October 2014

·         Arundel to Goring - Wednesday 15 October 2014

·         North Chailey - Tuesday 16 September 2014

·         Fletching - Sunday 7 September 2014

·         Bishopstone to Alfriston - Tuesday 2 September 2014

·         Glynde - Sunday 24 August 2014

·         Ditchling Stroll - Tuesday 19 August 2014

·         Lewes to Spain (aka Saltdean) - Tuesday 19 August 2014

·         50th Anniversary Walks - Tuesday 12 August 2014

·         Ardingly - Wednesday 6 August 2014

·         Polesden Lacey - Wednesday 23 July 2014

·         Plumpton - Sunday 13 July 2014

·         Rodmell - Sunday 9 July 2014

·         Burgess Hill - Sunday 29 June 2014

·         Ovingdean & Undercliffe - Tuesday 24 June 2014

·         Stroll - Tuesday 17 June 2014

·         High Hurstwood - Sunday 15 June 2014

·         Horsted Keynes - Tuesday 27 May 2014

·         Battle of Lewes Celebration - Saturday 10 May 2014

·         1st Stroll Bramber - Tuesday 22 April 2014

·         Polegate to Berwick Station - Wednesday 16 April 2014

·         Ringmer to Barcombe Circular - Sunday 23 March 2014

·         Uckfield to Little Horstead - Wednesday 19 March 2014

·         Hadlow Down - Sunday 9 March 2014

·         Plumpton Green - Tuesday 4 March 2014

·         Horam - Sunday 23 February 2014

·         Ashdown Forest - Wednesday 19 February 2014

·         Fletching - Tuesday 4 February 2014

·         Chailey Common - Sunday 26 January 2014

·         Shortgate - Wednesday 22 January 2014

·         Pre-Prandial Stroll Stanmer - Wednesday 15 January 2014

·         Housedean to Lewes - Tuesday 7 January 2014

·         Falmer - Wednesday 1 January 2014


·         A Seaford Stroll - Sunday 15 December 2013

·         Rodmell Iford South Downs Way - Sunday 1 December 2013

·         Ashurst Wood - Tuesday 26 November 2013

·         Crowlink - Sunday 17 November 2013

·         Cooksbridge to Chailey - Wednesday 13 November 2013

·         Chiddingly - Sunday 3 November 2013

·         Rushlake Green - Tuesday 29 October 2013

·         Ipswich, Suffolk - 4 to 7 October 2013

·         High Hurstwood - Tuesday 1 October 2013

·         Lewes Circular Sunday 22 September 2013

·         Woodmancote - Wednesday 18 September 2013

·         Puttenham or Shalford to Shere - Sunday 8 September 2013

·         South Chailey to Isfield or lewes - Tuesday 3 September 2013

·         Fletching - Monday 26 August 2013

·         Rushlake Green, Warbleton, Vines Cross - Tuesday 20 August 2013

·         Rottingdean - Wednesday 11 August 2013

·         East Hoathly - Wednesday 7 August 2013

·         Jevington and Lullington Heath - Sunday 28 July 2013

·         Arundel - Wednesday 24 July 2013

·         Bury Hill or Slindon Common to East Dean - Wednesday 10 July 2013

·         Hassocks - Sunday 30 June 2013

·         Patcham to Lewes - Wednesday 26 June 2013

·         Evening Walk Lewes & Kingston - Saturday 15 June 2013

·         Buxted - Monday 27 May 2013

·         Five ash Down and Little Horsted - Sunday 19 May 2013

·         Newhaven & Piddinghoe - Wednesday 1 May 2013

·         Burwash - Monday 21 April 2013

·         Blackboys - Monday 1 April 2013

·         Lewes to Glynde or Berwick Station - Sunday 24 March 2013

·         Springtime at Wakehurst - Tuesday 19 March 2013

·         Holtye - Sunday 10 March 2013

·         Cuckfield - Wednesday 6 March 2013

·         Rushlake Green - Sunday 24 February 2013

·         Cuckmere Valley - Tuesday 19 February 2013

·         Firle - Sunday 10 February 2013

·         Lewes - Wednesday 6 February 2013

·         Ashdown Forest - Sunday 27 January 2013

·         Stanmer Park - Tuesday 16 January 2013

·         Brighton-Rottingdean-Lewes - Sunday 13 January 2013

·         Withyham - Wednesday 9 January 2013


·         Malling Hill & The Combe - Wednesday 26 December 2012

·         Ardingly & Balcombe - Wednesday 12 December 2012

·         Laughton - Sunday 2 December 2012

·         Chelwood Gate - Wednesday 27 November 2012

·         Ditchling - Wednesday 18 November 2012

·         Findon and Chanctonbury Ring - Wednesday 14 November 2012

·         Hartfield & Pooh Bridge - Sunday 4 November 2012

·         Waldron - Sunday 21 October 2012

·         Alfriston & Wilmington - Sunday 7 October 2012

·         The Weald around Newick - Tuesday 2 October 2012

·         Lewes to A27, Housedean - Sunday 23 September 2012

·         Broad Oak, Heathfield - Wednesday 19 September 2012

·         Sandwich to St Margaret's Bay and Walmer Castle - Sunday 9 September 2012

·         Bishopstone - Tuesday 4 September 2012

·         Firle - Monday 27 August 2012

·         The Plumpton Path - Wednesday 22 August 2012

·         East Hoathly - Sunday 19 August 2012

·         Evening Walk Arlington Resevoir & Supper - Tuesday 7 August 2012

·         Ditchling Beacon - Sunday 29 July 2012

·         Three Oaks to Winchelsea - Wednesday 25 July 2012

·         Around Beachy Head - Sunday 14 July 2012

·         Sissinghurst Castle - Tuesday 10 July 2012

·         Figure of 8: Steyning am Bramber pm - Sunday 1 July 2012

·         Evening Walk Lewes to Mount Caburn to Lewes - Tuesday 26 June 2012

·         Eridge - Sunday 17 June 2012

·         Amberley - Wednesday 13 June 2012

·         Chailey Breakfast Walk - Saturday 2 June 2012

·         Devils Dyke - Sunday 20 May 2012

·         Gun Hill - Wednesday 16 May 2012

·         Isfield - Monday 7 May 2012

·         Pevensey Castle & Rickney - Tuesday 1 May 2012

·         Hadlow Down - Sunday 22 April 2012

·         Upper Dicker - Wednesday 18 April 2012

·         Horndean to East or West Meon - Sunday 15 April 2012

·         Wivelsfield Green - Monday 9 April 2012

·         Falmer to Rottingdean - Tuesday 3 April 2012

·         Vines Cross - Sunday 25 March 2012

·         Crowborough to Eridge Station - Wednesday 21 March 2012

·         Berwick Figure of Eight - Sunday 11 March 2012

·         Alfriston - Tuesday 6 March 2012

·         Hellingly - Sunday 26 February 2012

·         Newhaven to Peacehaven to Piddinghoe to Newhaven - Wednesday 22 February 2012

·         Horam - Sunday 12 February 2012

·         Crosspost/Bolney - Tuesday 7 February 2012

·         Balsdean (Walk 4) - Sunday 29 January 2012

·         Horstead Keynes - Sunday 15 January 2012

·         Around Ditchling Beacon - Sunday 1 January 2012


·         Plumpton - Wednesday 7 December 2011

·         Steyning - Sunday 27 November 2011

·         Berwick to Polegate (Changed to Southease) - Tuesday 22 November 2011

·         Kingston - Sunday 13 November 2011

·         Fletching - Wednesday 18 November 2011

·         Fulking - Sunday 30 October 2011

·         Wicklands, Shortgate, Roes Hill, Isfield - Tuesday 25 October 2011

·         Harvest Moon Walk - Saturday 15 October 2011

·         Christ's Hospital and Itchingfield - Wednesday 12 October 2011

·         Nutley & Sheffield Forest - Sunday 2 October 2011

·         Newhaven to Alfriston - Wednesday 28 September 2011

·         Wivelsfield - Sunday 18 September 2011

·         Groombridge - Tuesday 13 September 2011

·         Cranbrook & Iden Green to Tenterden - Sunday 4 September 2011

·         Etchingham - Monday 29 August 2011

·         Ashdown Forest - Sunday 21 August 2011

·         Pulborough to Amberley - Tuesday 16 August 2011

·         Laughton - Sunday 7 August 2011

·         Litlington - Wednesday 3 August 2011

·         Barcombe - Tuesday 19 July 2011

·         Petworth and Canal Cruise - Wednesday 13 July 2011

·         Berwick - Saturday 9 July 2011

·         West St Leonards to Crowhurst - Wednesday 6 July 2011

·         Chailey Common with Supper - Tuesday 21 June 2011

·         West Hoathly - Sunday 12 June 2011

·         Early Morning Walk Around Ditchling - Wednesday 8 June 2011

·         Magham Down and Pevensey Levels - Wednesday 25 May 2011

·         Danehill - Sunday 15 May 2011

·         Patching - Tuesday 10 May 2011

·         Clayton - Monday 2 May 2011

·         Rodmell, Northease & Southese - Sunday 22 April 2011

·         Holmbury St Mary to Winkworth - Sunday 17 April 2011

·         Barcombe Cross, South Chailey Circular - Tuesday 12 April 2011

·         Gun Hill, Chiddingly - Sunday 3 April 2011

·         Bramber & Steyning - Wednesday 30 March 2011

·         Wineham - Sunday 20 March 2011

·         Hever to Cowden - Tuesday 15 March 2011

·         Newick to Isfield Half Way House - Wednesday 2 March 2011

·         Ringmer to Lewes - Sunday 20 February 2011

·         Ouse Valley Viaduct - Tuesday 15 February 2011

·         Asdown Forest - Sunday 6 February 2011

·         Jevington - Sunday 23 January 2011

·         Plumpton - Tuesday 18 January 2011

·         Crowlink - Sunday 9 January 2011

·         Wintry Walks - Christmas to New Year



·         Lewes to Ringmer in the Snow - Tuesday 21 December 2010

·         Around Ditchling - Wednesday 8 December 2010

·         Devil's Dyke - Sunday 28 November 2010

·         South Chailey to Ditchling - Tuesday 23 November 2010

·         East of Alfriston - Sunday 14 November 2010

·         Firle Beacon - Wednesday 10 November 2010

·         Waldron Woodland Wander - Sunday 31 October 2010

·         Horsham Riverside Walk - Tuesday 26 October 2010

·         Going Cuckoo in Hailsham - Sunday 17 October 2010

·         North of Mile Oak - Wednesday 13 October 2010

·         Folkington - Tuesday 28 September 2010

·         Uckfield - Sunday 19 September 2010

·         Norman's Bay - Wednesday 15 September 2010

·         Titchfield to Swanwick and Sarisbury - Sunday 5 September 2010

·         Ripe - Wednesday 18 August 2010

·         Lancing - Sunday 8 August 2010

·         Hellingly - Tueday 3 August 2010

·         Lanes & Twittens of Lewes - Sunday 25 July 2010

·         Around Rye - Tuesday 20 July 2010

·         Ditchling Common - Saturday 10 July 2010

·         Kingston - Wednesday 27 June 2010

·         Lewes to Stanmer Park - Wednesday 23 June 2010

·         Clayton - Sunday 13 June 2010

·         Mount Harry Circular and Supper - Tueday 8 June 2010

·         Breakfast Walk - Saturday 29 May 2010

·         Fletching - Sunday 16 May 2010

·         Charleston Circular - Tuesday 11 May 2010

·         Caterham to Limpsfield Chart and Crockham Hill - Sunday 18 April 2010

·         East Hoathly - Tuesday 13 April 2010

·         Low Weald between Burgess Hill and Hassocks - Easter Monday 5 April 2010

·         Jevington to Wannock Circular - Wednesday 24 March 2010

·         Fernhurst (All Day) - Sunday 21 March 2010

·         Alfriston - Wednesday 10 March 2010

·         Weir Wood Reservoir - Sunday 7 March 2010

·         Barcombe Cross - Wednesday 24 February 2010

·         Warninglid - Sunday 21 February 2010

·         Newhaven - Tuesday 9 February 2010

·         Arlington Reservoir - Wednesday 27 January 2010

·         Shoreham - Sunday 24 January 2010

·         Lewes - Wednesday 13 January 2010


·         River & Downs North of Lewes - Saturday 26 December 2009

·         Ashdown Forest - Sunday 13 December 2009

·         Seaford to Exceat - Tuesday 8 December 2009

·         Kingston - Sunday 29 November 2009

·         Tidebrook, Mayfield - Wednesday 25 November 2009

·         Catsfield and Battle - Sunday 15 November 2009

·         East of Nutley - Wednesday 11 November 2009

·         Balcombe to Haywards Heath - Tuesday 27 October 2009

·         Crowlink and Belle Toute - Sunday 18 October 2009

·         Autumn Tints: Burwash Common - Wednesday 14 October 2009

·         Harvest Moon Walk: Housedean to Black Cap to Lewes - Sunday 3 October 2009

·         Lewes, Ashcombe, and Blackcap - Sunday 20 September 2009

·         River Thames Marlow and Maidenhead to Windsor - Sunday 6 September 2009

·         Horstead to Five Ash Down - Sunday 23 August 2009

·         Devil's Dyke to Mile Oak - Wednesday 19 August 2009

·         Ansty - Sunday 9 August 2009

·         Barcombe Walk & Supper - Tuesday 4 August 2009

·         Berwick to Glynde - Sunday 26 July 2009

·         Fairwarp - Wednesday 22 July 2009

·         Coach Outing Cartwell & Emmetts Garden - Wednesday 8 July 2009

·         Stonegate - Wednesday 24 June 2009

·         Breakfast Walk: Housedean to Lewes - Saturday 13 June 2009

·         Nutley to Sheffield Forest - Monday 25 May 2009

·         Waldron - Sunday 17 May 2009

·         Chailey to Isfield - Wednesday 13 May 2009

·         Stour Valley Walks - Sunday 3 May 2009

·         Blackboys - Sunday 19 April 2009

·         Plumpton - Sunday 5 April 2009

·         Balcombe to Haywards Heath AKA: Lewes, Southease, South Downs, Glynde - Tuesday 31 March 2009

·         Hadlow Down - Woods and Pastures - Sunday 22 March 2009

·         Pycombe - Wednesday 18 March 2009

·         High Hurstwood - Sunday 8 March 2009

·         Around Cuckfield - Sunday 22 February 2009

·         Uckfield to Newick - Wednesday 18 February 2009

·         Lewes and Kingston Circular: Walk 5 - Sunday 25 January 2009

·         Devils Dyke - Wednesday 21 January 2009

·         Ashdown Forest followed by New Year Lunch - Wednesday 14 January 2009

·         Ringmer to Mt Caburn back to Lewes - Sunday 11 January 2009


·         Around Henfield - Sunday 14 December 2008

·         Autumn Tints Woolbeding - Sunday 2 November 2008

·         Wivelsfield to Plumpton Green - Tuesday 28th October 2008

·         Horstead Keynes - Sunday 19 October 2008

·         Chiddingly - Wednesday 15 October 2008

·         Around Scaynes Hill - Wednesday 17 September 2008

·         Test Valley Coach Ounting - Sunday 7 September 2008

·         Rodmell Bank Hoiliday - Monday 25 August 2008

·         Arlington Including Reservoir - Wednesday 20 August 2008

·         Ashdown Forest - Sunday 10 August 2008

·         Balsdean Valley - Tuesday 5 August July 2008

·         Firle Evening Walk - Saturday 26 July 2008

·         Forest Row to Hartfield - Wednesday 23 July 2008

·         Wiston - Sunday 13 July 2008

·         Alfriston - Sunday 29 June 2008

·         The Breakfast Walk - Wednesday 25 June 2008

·         Bolney - Sunday 15 June 2008

·         Kings Standing and Ashdown Forest - Sunday 1 June 2008

·         Bishopstone to Lewes - Sunday 18 May 2008

·         Small Dole and Fulking - Wednesday 14 May 2008

·         Medway Valley - Sunday 4 May 2008

·         Ringmer Circular - Wednesday 30 April 2008

·         Partridge Green - Sunday 20 April 2008

·         Lewes to Falmer - Wednesday 16 April 2008

·         Greenwich Meridian Trail. - 6th to 12th April, 2008

·         Ditchling and Lower Standean - Tuesday 1 April 2008

·         West of Steyning - Monday 24 March 2008

·         Albourne Meander - Sunday 9 March 2008

·         Newick Circular - Tuesday 4 March 2008

·         Tilgate Forest - Wednesday 20 February 2008

·         Chiddingley - Wednesday 23 January 2008

·         Ditchling - wednesday 16 January 2008

WALK REPORTS for 2007 and before

·         Stanmer - Wednesday 26 December 2007

·         Rodmell - Wednesday 12 December 2007

·         Kingston - Tuesday 27 November 2007

·         Walks in 2007 and before. Individual reports are not indexed.


·         Ouse Valley in 2006.

·         Vanguard Way from Croydon to Newhaven in 2005.

·         South Downs Way from Eastbourne to Winchester in 2003 and 2004




©Lewes Footpaths Group