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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, 3 August 2019

Saturday Walk – The Ouse valley and the South Downs (Uckfield-Lewes)

Extra Walk 272 – Uckfield to Lewes
Length: 21 km (13 miles). Toughness: 4/10

10:07 Uckfield train from London Bridge (East Croydon 10:22) arriving Uckfield at 11:22. Buy a return to Lewes, which in practice is accepted by Southern staff on the Uckfield line.

There are two trains an hour back from Lewes, at xx:21 & xx:48.

This walk has had regular bank holiday outings since its début in 2012 but only one weekend posting, and that on a Sunday five years ago. It can't be hidden any longer from Saturday walkers so here's a rare chance to try it out. It's described as a gentle walk along river valleys through fields and woods, although in this remote corner of East Sussex reports suggest that you might have to hack your way through undergrowth on some of the early stages. You can reward yourself for your exertions with lunch in the large garden of the Anchor Inn, a popular riverside pub.

There's a choice of two afternoon routes into Lewes, with the more spectacular being a climb over the South Downs where you can peer down onto Glyndebourne Opera House. The shorter and easier alternative stays in the Ouse valley, with the final section along the riverbank being familiar from the Hassocks to Lewes walk. There are plenty of refreshment opportunities at the end of the walk.

You'll need to bring the directions from the Uckfield to Lewes walk page.


Anonymous said...

Last time we did this walk, there was a stretch on the morning section which was thick with shoulder high overgrowth and deep mud underfoot. There was discussion about re-writing the morning section to start from Lewes, forming a new Lewes Circular but I don't think that's been done yet. It's possible the morning path has improved but you might want to avoid shorts and short sleeves just in case. Alternatively, you could take a map and make your own way from Lewes to meet the group at the lunchtime pub. Talking of which, the pub's idyllic spot on the river means it's very popular in summer and last time they were unable to serve us so it would be worth packing a snack just in case.

Chris L said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chris L said...

The potentially overgrown path starts in para 13: "Just after the lane bends left ... turn right on a grass track
and in 30m ... bear left on to a narrow path.

If this path appears difficult to negotiate, return to the lane to continue for 400m before turning right on a footpath to pass Lower Barn Farm, and then right again for 250m to meet the end of the overgrown path at a left-hand bend, continuing at the second sentence of para 14.

This diversion is now shown as the main route on the walk map, but the text has not yet been updated.

Gabriella said...

10 started at the station. One dropped out after lunch having been badly scratched by brambles.
A quite delightful walk apart from the first hour, which, let alone being overgrown, was dull and uninspiring with nothing to recommend it.
Lunch at the Anchor was delicious, and although busy was manageable in terms of waiting time.
Some of us missed having a proper tea because the cafe in Ringmer closes at 4, and we thought it would be the same in Lewes, so we took some sustenance in another Anchor pub nearby.
Suggestions :
The group I was with felt that this walk could be greatly improved by modifying it into another Lewes Circular. Forget the Uckfield section entirely. Walk west from Lewes on what is outlined here as the alternative route, then after lunch quickly double back along the water meadows ( which would only be 20 minutes or so retracing ones steps ) before heading for Glyndebourne and the Downs, ending the hike on a high.
Oh, and also I reckon it could have commenced an hour earlier.

Anonymous said...