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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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Wednesday, 20 September 2017

"Jack and Jill" - and Panoramic Views from the Ridge of the South Downs

Book 1, Walk 29: Hassocks to Lewes

Length: 18 km (11.2 miles)
Toughness: 5 out of 10

London Blackfriars:  09-52 hrs    Brighton service from Bedford.   East Croydon 10-19 hrs
Arrive Hassocks: 10-58 hrs

London Victoria: 09-54 hrs   East Grinstead service
Arrive East Croydon: 10-10 hrs
Leave East Croydon: 10-19 hrs   Brighton service from Bedford (as above)
Arrive Hassocks: 10-58 hrs

Return: Lewes to Victoria:  16-14, 16-54, 17-14, 17-52, 18-16 and 18-50 hrs,  plus 07 and 22 mins past hour via Brighton

Rail ticket: buy a day return to Lewes. Younger walkers- head for East Croydon and use your railcards from there.

This lovely walk starts on the flat from Hassocks, going past Butchers Wood. On reaching Clayton, you should visit the Saxon church of St John the Baptist, before beginning your ascent of the South Downs - nothing too demanding. You pass the two Clayton Windmills on your way up - Jack and Jill - and once on the ridge of the Downs you are on the South Downs Way, from which you have wonderful 360 degree views as you pass Keymer Post then Ditchling Beacon. Further along the ridge, it's decision time: if you want a pub lunch, you drop down off the ridge and head for the pub - the Half Moon -in Plumpton. Sandwich eaters who do not want a drink at the pub can stay on the ridge, and save themselves the climb back onto the Downs.
Down in Plumpton you can shorten the walk by heading north to Plumpton railway station via Plumpton racecourse, some 3 km from the half Moon pub.  Otherwise, you have another not-too-demanding ascent back onto the ridge of the Downs to continue along the South Downs Way on pleasant grassy ways. Eventually, you leave the ridge and drop down to the village of Offham, from where you start your homeward leg by walking beside the River Ouse all the way into Lewes for tea in the town or at the railway station's excellent cafe, the Runaway.
If you enjoy ridge walks you should enjoy today's walk.
Walk Directions here:  L=1.29


Marcus said...

I'm away this week so I hope all mid-week regulars plus those attending for the first time enjoy this lovely South Downs walk.

Anonymous said...

Anyone going on this walk?jfk

Frankie said...


6 off the train in Hassocks who soon overtook 1 who had taken an earlier train so 7 altogether.

2 minutes into the walk those who had rain gear decided that the irritating drizzle would turn into heavy rain and covered up. And rain it did - all morning. It was a Wednesday after all.

The church of St. John the Baptist offered no temporary shelter since it was closed for building works. With very limited visibility there was no need to stop to admire the views so we pressed on to the Half Moon pub in Plumpton arriving just before a funeral party. All but one, who had to be back in London early, had an average, cheap and hearty lunch and tried to dry off and warm up in front of a wood burner that managed to produce remarkably little heat.

The group then split up with 2 taking a taxi to visit the Wood exhibition at the Ditchling Museum of Art and Craft while the other 4 warmed up on the steep ascent back to the South Downs Way. The rain had stopped and at 16.00 the sun came out.
All 4 then took the 16.54 train back to London.

A day of two halves but an enjoyable one.

Frankie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Thomas G said...

n=7 w=wet-in-the-morning