Length: 15.2km (9.4 miles) to 21.3km (13.2 miles)
Toughness: 5 out of 10 9.16
train from Victoria
(9.23 Clapham Junction
, 9.33 East Croydon
) to Lewes, arriving 10.25, changing there for the 10.47 train to Berwick, arriving 10.56.
Buy a day return to Eastbourne
, though it is possible to return from Seaford
from which a Berwick (Sussex) return
would usually be accepted
For walk directions
. For GPX
I am picking this walk in response to a request for something to coincide with the Jevington Village Fete
, a village passed 6.1 miles into this walk. Even if you are not interested in that, this is a fine walk for this time of year, starting on the flat, passing through the pretty village of Wilmington, whose churchyard has an extremely ancient yew, and then up past the chalk cut figure of the Long Man of Wilmington
. After this you walk over the South Downs to Jevington.
An early lunch is possible at the Giant's Rest
in Wilmington, though it has to be said that this favourite SWC pub was under new management last time we visited and disappointed us considerably compared to former days. Whether the Eight Bells
in Jevington will be busier than usual due to the fete, I do not know, but presumably the fete itself will have some food options.
After Jevington the walk climbs up onto the downs again and then follows a level route to Friston,
9.4 miles into the walk, from where you can take very regular (every ten minutes or so) number 12 buses
(slightly nearer) or Seaford.
If you want a tea stop, it is a very short walk down the hill to East Dean
, which has both the Hiker's Rest
cafe and the popular Tiger Inn
Alternatively you can extend the walk down onto the chalk cliffs of the Seven Sisters
. Here there are two options
, both making walks of 21km (13 miles)
, ie just under four miles further on from Friston:
- You can walk to Birling Gap
, but we are sadly just one week too early for the (in any case very limited) summer bus service, so if you do this you will then need to walk back up to East Dean to get a number 12 bus to Eastbourne or Seaford.
- Or you can turn right along the Seven Sisters
(walking over half of them) and end up at Exceat
, also getting the number 12 bus to Seaford.
- SEA SWIMMING
: We are getting to that time of year when a dip in the sea becomes possible (albeit that the water is still rather chilly), but tides at Birling Gap
are a bit awkward today, with low tide at 8pm. These means concealed underwater rocks could make it tricky to swim. Eastbourne
(near the pier) or Seaford
can be swum at any state of the tide, however, and the east side of Cuckmere Haven
(on the Exceat ending) can usually be swum after picking one's way across stones a bit... Trains back from Eastbourne
are at 00
past until 22.00 (ie trains are now half hourly all evening, whereas before they were hourly after 7pm).
Trains back from Seaford
are at 25
past until 21.53,
changing at Lewes (once again, the requirement to change at Brighton on two of the evening trains has now gone and all trains now have Lewes connections).