This walk, originally planned for Dec 14, has been swapped with the original Dec 28 posting due to strike action. It will be postponed further if the strike action continues. SWC Walk 236a – Ashurst to Eridge (w/o Burrswood)
Length: 18.3 km (11.3 mi)
Net Walking Time: ca. 4 ¼ hours
Toughness: 4 out of 10
Ashurst to Eridge (Full Walk)
Length: 21.0 km (13.0 mi)
Ascent/Descent: 290 m; Net Walking Time: ca. 5 hours
Toughness: 5 out of 10
Take the 10.08 Uckfield train from London Bridge (EC 10.23), arrives Ashurst 10.58.
Return trains: 15.50, 16.50, 17.20, 17.48, 18.20, 18.49… (from 65 minutes journey time).
Buy an Eridge return ticket.
The High Weald can be very muddy in winter, let’s hope for a dry-ish period preceding this outing…
Decision time for whether or not to walk the full walk (head torch recommended if you do) is mid-afternoon.
From a remote station this walk climbs up the low hills between the River Medway and Tunbridge Wells, soon with some attractive views across a steep-sided open hillside reminiscent of wilder parts of Britain. A gently undulating route along field edges, country lanes and wooded valleys takes you to the village of Speldhurst
, where the parish church of St Mary the Virgin
contains a set of notable pre-Raphaelite stained glass windows.
After a lunch stop in the village's 16th
C inn the walk loops back towards the Burrswood
estate, situated in a wooded valley passed near the beginning of the walk. Its 19th
C manor house (omitted on the shorter walk) is now a small NHS hospital, with walkers being encouraged to use the permissive paths through its grounds (and visit its tearoom). Its long driveway leads to the hamlet of Old Groombridge and the remainder of the walk is the same as the shorter ending to Extra Walk 120 (Eridge Circular). This goes past Groombridge Place
, a beautiful Jacobean manor house surrounded by a medieval moat, then follows the course of the heritage Spa Valley Railway
's extension from Groombridge to Eridge. Along the way you can often see climbers practising their skills on an impressive outcrop of Ardingly sandstone, Harrison's Rocks
An early lunch
is possible at the Chafford Arms
but the recommended stop is the highly-rated George & Dragon
(7.2 km/4.5 mi, food to 14.30).
in Eridge, The Huntsman
right by the station
seems to be the only choice and it is open all afternoon these days.
, walk directions
, height profile
files click here
Next Week: Book 1 Walk 5 (in reverse) Amersham to Great Missenden, 16.8 km, 4/10