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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, 16 May 2015

A new section of the Greensand Way

SWC walk 151 - Sutton Valence to Pluckley
Length: 18km (11.2 miles)
Toughness: 3 out of 10

9.40 train from Charing Cross (9.42 Waterloo East) to Headcorn, arriving 10.43.

Then catch the 10.49 number 12 bus (ultimate destination Maidstone: not the Tenterden bus which arrives at a similar time) from Headcorn station forecourt to Sutton Valence, arriving 10.59. For details of the bus journey and when to get off, see Transport on page two of the walk directions.

Buy a day return to Pluckley, from where trains return at 11 and 41 past the hour till late.

For walk directions click here.

This is a brand new section of the Greensand Way, never before done by the SWC. It almost entirely follows a fine ridge with extensive views, ending in familiar territory around Pluckley. Previously a map walk, this walk now has full directions, which are getting their first outing today.

This is gentle territory, with plenty of pretty features, including several remote and interesting churches, apple orchards (probably no longer in blossom, but you never know), and a country mansion that is in fact an open prison.

Lunch is after 7.4 miles at the George Inn in Egerton. I have never actually lunched here so don't know how busy or otherwise it is, but it has often proved a friendly place for tea on the extension to the Pluckley walk and it is open for food all afternoon apparently. An alternative just 3.5 miles into the walk is the very pleasant Pepper Box Inn: this is a popular pub and somewhat restauranty, and so might not react well to a large group turning up, but if the weather is fine it does have an extensive area of outside tables.

For tea/drinks towards the end of the walk there is the Black Horse in Pluckley and (after 6pm) the Dering Arms by the station. The latter is also a posh gourmet restaurant, but has a cosy old-fashioned bar and is happy enough to do tea etc if not busy.

If anyone wants to try it, there is an alternative start to this walk, 1.7km/1.1 miles shorter, though less attractive than the Sutton Valence start. For this get the 10.22 train from Victoria to Harrietsham arriving 11.32. Train tickets for this option are a bit trickier. Harrietsham and Pluckley are on entirely different lines though both operated by Southeastern, so you might get away with a Harrietsham return, but a safer bet would be as return to Ashford International, which is on both routes.

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