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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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Monday, 25 May 2015

Bank Holiday Monday Walk – rock climbers and steam trains

Extra Walk 19c – Tunbridge Wells Circular (long walk, via Groombridge)
Length: 23½ km (14.6 miles), with shorter options. Toughness: 7/10

09:33 Hastings train from London Bridge (East Croydon 09:52, Redhill 10:08), arriving Tunbridge Wells at 10:39.

Late Start option: You could take the train half an hour later (10:03) and start from Frant (one stop further down the line) at 11:16. This is the original version of Walk 19, now option b. I reckon that both groups will get to the old well on Frant village green at the same time and so could do the rest of the walk together.

Trains back from Tunbridge Wells are half-hourly, at around 03 & 33 minutes past the hour.

Note that the Hastings trains are being diverted this weekend with a slightly longer journey time (but a bonus for south Londoners who can connect with them at East Croydon or Redhill).

When you head out of Tunbridge Wells station beware those walkers following the route on a gizmo, as there's a 50-50 chance they'll set off on the longer way out of town: on this option c you should be starting at §3 in the printed directions. You'll pass a nice pub in Frant village but I suggest pressing on to the Nevill Crest and Gun in Eridge Green, after about 10 km. After lunch you can switch to the shorter return route via Broadwater Warren, but the long walk will take you past one of the finest sandstone outcrops in the south-east, Harrison's Rocks. On the final stretch back to Tunbridge Wells you're never far from the Spa Valley Railway and could decide to save your legs by boarding one of their heritage trains at Groombridge (steam loco at 15:46, diesel at 17:22). There are several places where you can break for tea during the afternoon, and of course plenty of opportunities for further refreshment in Tunbridge Wells itself.

You'll need to print the directions from the Extra Walk 19 page. If you're sure which route you're taking you can minimise the amount printed by clicking on the relevant Walk Option.

1 comment:

Ian T said...

I think I can tell you how many were on this walk n=14 and I wasn’t even on it. I sort of was, but not in the same way as everyone else. I was going to start at Frant but my computer had other ideas. Someone, either me or it, accidentally selected the “main walk”, which, let me tell you, does not print out the full directions. Having realised that Frant was crossed out, I had time to switch to the TW train at East Croydon. At TW, I realised that the shorter start was also crossed out. :( So I followed the long morning, possibly even the “gizmo” route, sulking all the way, and arrived at Frant well after everyone else had left. Shortly before Frant, I was overtaken by someone who started an hour later. Tell me I’m not that slow.
My “afternoon”, was shorter than the others’. Much as I would have liked to extend the walk to God-knows-how-long, my computer had said “no” and that was that. I was going via Eridge Rocks. And Broadwater Warren, desolate but passable.
At walk’s end, I had a quick look along the Pantiles for any stragglers but saw none. I admit, though, that I was reluctant to venture far inside any of the notorious tea dens.
I can vouch for the Pantiles Tap, a tiny little establishment selling real cider and beer. A well-earned half was quaffed in seconds.
Then on to the station where I actually met three stragglers, which is how I got the numbers. I also found out that quite a few bailed out at Groombridge and got the chuff-chuff. w=cloudy_and_sunny
2 things I think I learnt today:
a) check the directions after printing
b) always a good idea to bring a map