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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.

Blog Archive

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Sunday Walk 2 – Lots of variety on this South Downs walk

Extra Walk 9 – Pulborough to Amberley
Length: 17.2 km (10.7 miles). Toughness: 5/10

10:02 Bognor Regis train from Victoria (Clapham Jct 10:08, East Croydon 10:18), arriving Pulborough at 11:19. Buy a day return to Amberley.

[If you just miss this train, the 10:06 Brighton train overtakes it and you'd have a sporting chance of catching it at Gatwick Airport.]

Trains back from Amberley are hourly at 20 minutes past.

There are quite a few SWC walks in the attractive area around Pulborough Brooks, and this one hasn't had a Sunday outing for nearly four years. Its relatively short morning section takes you into some gentle hills to the east of Pulborough, where there's a choice of two lunch pubs about 15 minutes apart. If neither of these are up to the task on Mother's Day, you'll definitely be able to get some refreshment half an hour later at the RSPB Nature Reserve at Pulborough Brooks. The final part of the walk takes you through woodland and up onto the South Downs ridge before dropping down into the familiar surroundings of Houghton Bridge, which offers a nice riverside tearoom and a friendly pub close to Amberley station.

You'll need to print the directions from this PDF document.


PeteB said...

n=24 on this walk (including the walk inspector), possibly a winter Sunday record? Weather w=bright-and-sunny-with-a-cool-breeze-in-the-afternoon. The going was good with only short stretches of mud. The large group gradually split up into smaller ones but most people I think continued past the first pub and a group of us stopped at the 2nd which was packed for a drink and sandwich.Here we saw a helicopter land in a nearby field (bit OTT for Mothers Day?) and we were then treated to the fine sight of four people in their Sunday best picking their way over the field to get to the pub.

We then made our way to the RSPB reserve where we stopped for refreshments which was rather spoiled by the slow service. (I joined the queue with 6 people in front of me and it took me 20 mins to be served.)

Next the long tarmac lane to the hill which we toiled up before setting the pace to catch the 16.20 train which we made easily with 15mins to spare. I wish I'd missed out the RSPB stop and enjoyed a drink at the Bridge but c'est la vie. A splendid day out and good to see "old faces" with tales of their recent foreign adventures.

Sean said...

The Rising Sun's announcement that they wouldn't be able to feed 20+ walkers came as no great surprise on Mother's Day, but the walk inspector had already prepared a cunning plan to get his Sunday lunch. His diligent research had spotted a few shortcuts and one of these got him and three companions to Nutbourne by 12.20, a good 15 minutes ahead of the pack. A tense negotiation with an initially hesitant landlady resulted in a table by the front window and four splendid lunches. Unfortunately we failed to attract the attention of the passing group but I'm sure they would have heartily congratulated us on our stratagem.

Suitably refreshed we then made a little detour to the nearby Nutbourne Manor Vineyard. However, it didn't look as if any wine tasting was on offer so we resumed our leisurely progress to Pulborough Brooks, slowed down by a few squelchy fields and muddy paths. The service in the RSPB Tea Room was no quicker at 3pm but we eventually got to enjoy tea on the veranda, speculating on which artist would have best painted the scene. The dark grey clouds which were now scudding overhead would have enlivened any landscape but they merely reinforced a joint decision to call it a day and head across the brooks to Pulborough (where we were pleased to find that a low embankment had been constructed across an often flooded field, potentially making this route practicable in all seasons). Apologies to the walk author for the numerous liberties we took with his directions, but we all greatly enjoyed our day.

Anonymous said...

Inn order to lessen numbers at the lunch time pub I did my own version of Pulborough to Amberley. I enjoyed bright sunshine and wonderful view of the Downs. i also managed to get served lunch at the White hart pub.

However the last part involved very very boggy Wild lands and will have to be re written.i was pleased I hadnt taken three unsuspecting Americans with me.


Anonymous said...

Nobody has mentioned the blocking of the path through the farmyard in paragraph 40 - just after the pub in Nutbourne. The field next to it was crisscrossed with electric fencing blocking three walking paths that go through it. Some of the fence was even attached to the footpath signs. There was also a sign warning of a bull in the field though we didn't see it. It seems that farmer doesn't like walkers. We spoke to some locals who said they would raise the issue with the village residents association. We eventually ducked under the electric fences to get back on the route.

Sean said...

In reply to the last comment, I noticed that taking the path through the farmyard (as per the directions) looked problematic and decided to take the more direct footpath going diagonally across the large field. The right of way is well marked with hand-painted "Footpath" signs and there are handles with insulation in the electric fences dividing up the field which you lift to get through. This alternative route wouldn't be quite so appealing if there had been a bull in the field, of course.