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This Week's Walks - Archive

Please see the Saturday Walker's Club This Week's Walks page.

This is an archive of walks done by the Saturday Walker's Club. You should only need to use this page if the SWC website is down.

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Saturday, 30 April 2016

Saturday Third Walk - Bluebells and beautiful views

SWC Walk 20 - Sevenoaks to Westerham
Length: 18.8km (11.7 miles)
Toughness: 6 out of 10

9.40 train from Charing Cross (9.43 Waterloo East) to Sevenoaks, arriving 10.11

You can also get the 9.33 from Cannon Street (9.37 London Bridge, 9.43 New Cross, 9.56 Orpington) to Sevenoaks, arriving 10.05 - in which case you are on your word of honour to wait for the 10.11 train to arrive before starting your walk.

Buy a day return to Sevenoaks.

For walk directions, click here.

This walk starts with a walk across Knole Park - very familiar terrain to many of you - and then plunges below the Greensand escarpment into pretty hilly territory with some nice views. There are a series of excellent bluebell woods in the middle section of the walk. The last section is a wooded walk to Westerham.

For lunch there is a choice between a very nice but rather small Windmill pub in Sevenoaks Weald just off the walk route 7.9km/4.9 miles into the walk. I would definitely give them a tinkle to make sure they have space before making the diversion. The alternative, a hefty 13.9km (8.6 miles) into the walk is the Cock Inn in Ide Hill. Service here can be rather gruff but it serves decent food. Last time I looked this was until 3pm but don't quote me.

Your emergency lunch alternatives are the very nice Community Shop in Ide Hill which does soups and sandwiches and the National Trust-run tea room in Emmetts Garden, 14.7km (9.1 miles) into the walk, which otherwise is the recommended tea stop - open till 5pm. Last but not least, Westerham is bristling with pubs, tea rooms, and a Costa Coffee open till 6pm last time I looked.

To get back from Westerham you need to get a bus and there are two choices:

- You can get the 401 at 13 past (last bus 18.13) from Westerham Green to Sevenoaks station, which takes 22 minutes. There are fast and frequent trains to London from here, taking 20 minutes.

- Alternatively the 246 goes at 22 and 52 past from Westerham Green to Bromley South station until 18.22, then 19.22, 20.22, 21.12, 22.12, 23.12, taking 43 minutes (also calls at Hayes station 13 minutes earlier). This bus used to be a London Transport service and so Oyster could be used and the bus fare was the standard Oyster bus fare (also zone four to six travelcards), but I am not sure if that is still true. Your Sevenoaks return IS valid for return from Bromley South to Victoria, however (very frequent trains, 20 minutes), as the station is on the route to Sevenoaks via Otford.


3 comments:

Bill S said...

And to complete the hat-trick there were also n=14 on this walk. W=Good- sunny-spells, with a few drops of rain on a couple of occasions, so light and short lived that we hardly had time to decide whether it was worth digging out our waterproofs before it stopped.

All of us, I think, decided to press on to the second pub, the Cock Inn at Ide Hill, two thirds of the way into the walk. Arriving unannounced at 1.00 we found all of the tables inside were taken, and that the pub was not taking any further orders for food served at the outside tables for half an hour until the kitchen dealt with it's backlog. Most of us made do with a drink and packet of crisps outside before pressing on to the NT café at Emmetts Gardens for a late lunch there, but four lucky members of our group, who had chosen to have there drinks inside, managed to grab a table that was being vacated and were able to order food.

Most of us who had eaten at Emmett's were not ready for tea and cake at Westerham, a mere two miles further on, and chose instead to go directly to either Bromley South or Sevenoaks.

Plenty of bluebells in evidence, though mostly seen at a distance, and just past there prime. A few wood anenomes in flower, and likewise some wild garlic.

A fine, if at times strenuous, walk with little in the way of mud, but plenty of good company.

Bill S said...

And to complete the hat-trick there were also n=14 on this walk. W=Good- sunny-spells, with a few drops of rain on a couple of occasions, so light and short lived that we hardly had time to decide whether it was worth digging out our waterproofs before it stopped.

All of us, I think, decided to press on to the second pub, the Cock Inn at Ide Hill, two thirds of the way into the walk. Arriving unannounced at 1.00 we found all of the tables inside were taken, and that the pub was not taking any further orders for food served at the outside tables for half an hour until the kitchen dealt with it's backlog. Most of us made do with a drink and packet of crisps outside before pressing on to the NT café at Emmetts Gardens for a late lunch there, but four lucky members of our group, who had chosen to have there drinks inside, managed to grab a table that was being vacated and were able to order food.

Most of us who had eaten at Emmett's were not ready for tea and cake at Westerham, a mere two miles further on, and chose instead to go directly to either Bromley South or Sevenoaks.

Plenty of bluebells in evidence, though mostly seen at a distance, and just past there prime. A few wood anenomes in flower, and likewise some wild garlic.

A fine, if at times strenuous, walk with little in the way of mud, but plenty of good company.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure I followed the directions correctly and I went straight through a few woods with carpets of bluebells which were at their best, especially in the Ide Hill area.