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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

Saturday, 11 June 2016

Saturday Second Walk - A walk around Chichester Harbour

Book 1 Walk 37 Southbourne to Chichester
Length: 18.5km (11.5 miles)
Toughness: officially 3 out of 10: actually 1 out of 10 (entirely flat)

9.30 (Portsmouth-bound) train from Waterloo to Havant, arriving 10.49, changing there (crossing to the other side, I think) for the 10.56 (London Victoria-bound) train to Southbourne, arriving 11.03.


9.36 train from Victoria (9.42 Clapham Junction, 9.53 East Croydon) to Southbourne, arriving 11.12 (But see Note on train choice below)

Buy a day return to Southbourne: if you are going via Havant, this must be "Any Permitted" (£22.40 with a Network Card). If you are going from Victoria it can be "Southern Only" (£19.20 with a Network Card)

Note on train choice: I have picked the Havant option as the "official" train for this walk to minimise the possibility of disruption from the ongoing "staff sickness" industrial action by RMT members, which has led to train cancellations on Southern routes (the Waterloo-Havant train is South West Trains, so not affected). Though the Havant-Southbourne connection is a Southern service, if it is cancelled the next train is only 20 minutes later, arriving 11.23. If 9.36 from Victoria (a Southern service) is cancelled, you have to get the 10.06 to Barnham and change there (arrive 11.27, depart 11.42), getting to Southbourne 11.57.

For walk directions click here.

This walk was once a firm SWC favourite but seems to have become neglected in recent years. So I though it time to give it a revival.

It takes you along the edge of Chichester Harbour - a once marshy, low-lying coast which has a fascination all of its own. To begin with today the tide will be about half way in, with extensive mudflats (and interesting bird life - bring binoculars!) but as the day goes on the tide will rise, peaking at 6pm. (You will notice the long gap between low and high tide: this is due to the curiosities of water flows in Chichester Harbour.)

The walk starts with a short section along the harbour, then is inland for a while, and then there is a long loop around the harbour to Bosham (which appears deceptively close early in the loop).

Bosham itself is a charming, ancient port village, with a characterful (though popular) harbourfront pub and also a couple of cafes/tea rooms for lunch. After another inland section across fields, the walk then returns for a third stint along the harbour, before you come to Fishbourne, which has remains of a Roman palace (you will be challenged to do the walk and also have time to see this, however, as it shuts at 5pm.

The last section is along roads into the attractive ancient city of Chichester, with tea possible in the cathedral cafe.

Trains back from Chichester: are at 17.10. 17.41, 18.10, 18.37, 19.07, 20.07 and 21.07, taking 1hr 40 minutes approximately)


1 comment:

Walker said...

N=10 on this walk, 8 travelling via Havant, 2 on the direct train from Victoria. Ironically it was the Havanters who were hit by a Southern cancellation of their connecting train, while the direct service operated as planned. But there was another Havant connection 20 minutes later so we only started ten minutes behind the others and soon caught them up.

Low tide (lower than I expected, to be honest) meant a lot of green slime in view on the coastal bits of the walk. It was also w=cloudy-and-very-humid accompanied by a steady drip of raindrops which were a bit like adding water to the coals in a sauna. Despite this an enjoyable walk. Nice flowers, a painted lady butterfly or two, and terrain that was different from the usual. Nice to see former SWC stalwart Catherine B back on a three week visit from her native Australia. Lunch in Bosham outside the Anchor Bleu pub was also very pleasant and enlivened by a bride and her maids of honour walking past in full regalia. On the last stretch of coastal route to Fishbourne we at last saw some sea as the tide came in and Fishbourne Meadows had lots of (relatively) rare Southern Marsh Orchids. A few visited Chichester Cathedral.

The "recommended tea place" in Chichester is long gone - no trace of it remains. But six of us found a pub and five of us had dinner and we all got the 8pm train home. I made a note on current tea options and a few minor direction changes and will update the online version soonish.