Escarpment view

Sevenoaks Circular walk

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Sevenoaks Circular walk

History

This is a list of previous times this walk has been done by the club (since Jan 2010). For more recent events (since April 2015), full details are shown.

Updated: Sun, 12-Jul-20

Date # Post
Wed, 19-Feb-20 15

Wednesday Walk Sevenoaks Circular

Sevenoaks Circular T=swc.21

Length: 16.3km (10.1 miles) with extension to Shipbourne: 18.5km (11.5 miles). 3 out of 10.

"This walk goes through a lovely slice of Kentish countryside, starting by passing through the deer park of Knole House and then carrying on into a gentle area of fields and woods.

You then descend through newly coppiced woodland to Ightham Mote (pronounced "I-tam"), a rare moated manor house. Then a wonderful stretch of the Greensand Way which slowly climbs the escarpment of the Kent Downs with superb views over the Weald to the south. Finally the walk finishes by passing through Knole Park once again."

Trains: Get the 1000 Tunbridge Wells train from Charing Cross (London Bridge 1009) arriving Sevenoaks 1035. There are frequent return trains to Charing Cross or Blackfriars , but some take around 35 mins & others nearer an hour.

Lunch: Lunch is at Ightham Mote (8.4km/5.2 miles into the walk), National Trust with cafe & picnic area (the house is closed). You can also go on from here to do an extra loop to the excellent Chaser Inn in Shipbourne (01732 810360), 9.7km (6 miles) into the walk, which serves food all afternoon. There is a churchyard nearby for picnics.

Tea: the Brewhouse Cafe at Knole House is open till 5pm, or plenty of choice in Sevenoaks.
Hullo. Could it be a novel walk that does not include the overtrodden Knole Park, please?
As far as I know, all the sevenoaks walks go through the park......
Knowle Park is the highlight I always thought !
Anyone with an aversion to Knole Park should note that the main route of Hurst Green to Sevenoaks (SWC149) does not go through Knole Park, though a couple of alternative endings are suggested that do enter the park.
I did this walk about three weeks ago and to Shipham (aka Shipbourne), and for about two thirds of the walk it was dreadful mud. So, Knole park is the best bit as far as that is concerned. welly boots are the best option.
Sorry might be criticised for putting people off, although there is not that much not covered in mud in any case. I have no intention of doing this.
It's pronounced "Shibburn." I'm hoping to make it what's a bit of mud?
I agree. I enjoyed the mud. However was trying to add to the conversation on the planned route. Shibburn, yes sorry.
First, 'dreadful mud', then you 'enjoyed the mud'. Where is the best mud?
Just to note that The Brewhouse Cafe in Knowle is only open until 4pm at present (It's open until 5pm from March).

I'm hoping to come along too.
The NT website says 5pm,however rain may speed us to the train!
14 got off the train and we met 1 more at lunch, so 15 in total. We all ate or picnicked at Ightham Mote, which with the poor weather forecast wasn't too busy for half term week. Remarkably we all set off as a group, and even more so, all had tea at Knole Park. This couldn't continue, so we diverged on the route back to the station. cloud with some slight drizzle.
14. overcast with some light rain in the afternoon. Despite prior prophecies of doom and gloom, Knole Park was delightful and while there was some mud on the afternoon section, it was no more than one gets on any other walk at this time of year. Perhaps the most astonishing feature of the walk was that such a large group stuck together virtually throughout (which dare I say was nothing to do with mud). We all lunched at Ightam Mote, the designated lunch stop, and all left together. All 14 stopped for tea at Knole House and again left together Only on leaving the park did we split with 7 following the morning route back to Sevenoaks station, while the other 7 walked via the town (and presumably the pub). My group of 7 took the 3.59 train back to the big smoke. Thanks to Pete G for posting.
Sat, 29-Jun-19 9

Sevenoaks circular with a National Trust medieval moated manor house and a lavender farm

Here's a walk within easy reach of London with some woodland cover and great views over the Weald during the afternoon section.


Length 10 miles (16 km)
Toughness 3 out of 10

Getting there

Catch the 10:00 am Dover Priory train from London Charing Cross (10:03 from Waterloo East and 10:09 from London Bridge) to arrive at Sevenoaks station at 10:35 am.

Getting back

There are six fast trains an hour from Sevenoaks back to London, so your arrival at the station is not time critical.

Plan your journey here.

Tickets

Buy a cheap day return to Sevenoaks.


Maps

OS Landranger Map 188, Explorer Map 147.

Overview

This is a fairly easy walk starting through a pleasant part of Sevenoaks before entering Knole park through a a tiny gate set in a tall stone wall. There's an interesting feature about a mile before lunch where the walk passes a lavender farm (the lavender should be flowering and quite colourful about now).
The afternoon section is a little hilly along the Greensand way but there are a number of places to sit and relax to take in the vistas across the Weald. The Brewhouse Café at Knole house makes for a pleasant break before the final leg back into Sevenoaks.

Lunch

There are two options for a purchased lunch, the National Trust Café at Ightham Mote or to extend the walk slightly (mile and a half) to visit the The Chaser Inn at Shipbourne


More details about this walk may be found on the link below
L=3.21
T=swc.21


My local train gets me into Sevenoaks at 10.45 so I’ll walk fast and hope to catchup with the group in them morning.
9 walkers in hot and humid conditions. The shady stretches in the woods were very welcome,
Thu, 27-Dec-18 12

Sevenoaks Circular - an easy post-Christmas walk

Length: 16.3km (10.1 miles) - or 18.5km (11.5 miles) with a pub lunch
Toughness: 3 out of 10

10.15 train from Charing Cross (10.18 Waterloo East, 10.24 London Bridge) to Sevenoaks, arriving 10.49.

Remember today is a working day (even if it doesn't feel like one), so buy your ticket - a day return to Sevenoaks - after 10am or from the ticket office to get Network Card discounts.

For walk directions click here. For GPX click here.

Ease yourself back into an upright position with this gentle walk in the Greensand Hills. A firm SWC favourite, it includes the deer park of Knole House, the pretty moated National Trust-owned Ightham Mote and fine views from the Greensand Ridge.

The easiest refreshment stops are the National Trust tea rooms at Ightham Mote and Knole House (towards the end of the walk), both open until 4pm. Ightham Mote does hot food of a sort, but if you want more substantial meal the walk directions include an extra diversionary loop to the Chaser Inn in Shipbourne (devised last year but not yet done by the SWC). This is a lovely large pub but also popular, so you might be advised to phone to check they have a table before doing this option. Sevenoaks has later tea possibilities.

Trains back from Sevenoaks are very frequent - every ten minutes or so. T=3.21
I am at Sevenoaks station. Have you all left?
2 missed the train at London Bridge due to long queues for tickets. Caught the next train 15 minutes later. A lovely sunny day, very enjoyable and mainly easy walking with 200m of ascent after about 5 miles. Surprisingly managed to miss the entire group on the walk as well as the initial planned train. Caught the 14.56 back to London, giving plenty of time to play with our Christmas presents.
Most of us did catch the train as posted, and several more joined us as we made our way to Knole Park, going through that delightful secret gate, so with the two as posted below it makes a total of 12 . It was a brilliant day out, sunny and bright, and in the dusk coming back through Knole Park the temperature dropped and brought with it an atmospheric ground mist. The deer made it a beautiful wintry scene. Two went to Ightam Mote for lunch, the rest of us including two sandwich eaters did the diversion to The Chaser at Shipbourne which was very busy but jolly and the food was pretty good, the wine even more so. Not sure how we all missed Graham, and also we unfortunately left one person behind in the Park, lost in the gloom, very sorry about that. Nice tea at Soprano's in Sevenoaks, personally recommended by one who has enjoyed tapas there.
Sunny
Sat, 21-Jul-18 30

Saturday walk - Sevenoaks Circular - A quiet rural walk close to London

Length: 16.3km (10.1 miles) or 18.5km (11.5 miles) T=3.21
Toughness: 3 out of 10: gentle gradients
10.00 train from Charing Cross (10.03 Waterloo East, 10.09 London Bridge) to Sevenoaks, arriving 10.35.
For walk directions click here. For GPX click here.
You have to go back to the late Middle Ages (OK, September 2010) to find a time when this walk had a Saturday posting in anything approximating to summer. The midweek walkers - no slouches, they - did it in August 2016, however, and described it as a fine summer outing.
To anyone left in SWC-land who does not know it, the walk offers a charming mix of "Garden of England" scenery, including one area just after Stone Street where lavender fields were in evidence earlier in the year: they may now have been harvested, however. You also pass through the Knole Park estate out and back, and in the early afternoon have fine views southwards. There is a reasonable amount of shade - maybe 40-50% of the walk.
The moated manor house of Ightham Mote is at the heart of the main walk: at this time of year, you could even take time out to visit it, knowing you have infinities of daylight in which to finish the walk. Otherwise, its tea room is the most convenient lunch stop.
For a pub lunch a very early option, 2.4 miles into the walk, is the Bucks Head in Godden Green.
Otherwise, since the Padwell Arms is no no more, an optional new loop to the Chaser Inn in Shipbourne was added to the walk directions in February but has never actually had an outing with the SWC: this is the 18.5km (11.5 mile) version of the walk. Despite (or perhaps because of) a menu groaning in red meat (generous portions too - but vegetarian options so small you need a microscope to see them), this is a very popular pub, so you might want to phone and check they have a table before diverting to it. It does, however, have quite a large (and non-bookable) garden - very pretty, by the church - and serves food all afternoon.
For tea, Knole Park's Brewhouse Cafe closes at 5pm, the Malabar Cafe in Sevenoaks at 6pm, and Caffe Nero in Sevenoaks (if things get that desperate) at 6.30pm.
Trains back to London are very frequent - every ten minutes or so.
Reference the lavender fields near Stone Street, as of Wednesday 18 July when I was out book checking our Borough Green to Sevenoaks walk, the lavender was in full bloom and not yet harvested, but I expect it will be very soon. Hopefully on Saturday you will be lucky.
Someone on the walk suggested I do a walk report so I agreed to. You have to enter into the spirit as all these people do all this for free.
So here goes my walk report is as follows
Number of walkers not sure as I didn't count them but say 30
Good weather
I don't do pub reports
I dont do vegans
I don't do flowers
I don't do muddiness
I don't do dogs
I don't do birds
I don't do rabbits and other wild animals
I don't do cows sheep what ever
My report is finished
I trust that you will not ask me to do one again
Thank you for a good day.

MY BAD
30
marvelous sunny
Thanks for the walk report. Knowing people enjoyed the walk so much makes all the effort of posting worthwhile. Just one detail: was the lavender still out, just out of curiosity?
To add to Anon's walk report below, only the odd lavender bush remained after harvesting but the few remaining were enough to attract butterflies and bees and the scent of lavender was still in the air. The group split for lunch with about half stopping at the Ightham Mote cafe, which wasn't too busy, despite the large number of cars in the car park, and the group easily found tables and were served quickly. The other half of the group were well accommodated in the garden of the Chaser Inn at Shipbourne. Most of us met up again either en route in the afternoon or at Knowle Park's revamped courtyard tea room, from where we drifted in smaller groups to the station. Some took the route through the park to avoid going through town and a few stopped to watch the local cricket match at The Vines pitch before the final leg to the station.
Sun, 17-Dec-17

Sunday walk: Sevenoaks Circular

Sevenoaks Circular SWC Walk 21
9.6 miles 15.4 km.
Difficulty 4/10
An old favourite taking in the Greensand Way, the Kent Downs, Knole Park with its deer, and Ightham Mote.
Trains: Get the 10.10 Ramsgate train from Charing Cross arriving 10:46
There are frequent trains back from Sevenoaks, the fastest being from platform 1.
Directions here
Lunch: A really-wheely early stop is the Bucks Head in Godden Green 01732 761330. Otherwise, later on, you have a choice between the Padwell 01732 761532 (phoning advised) or the National Trust Restaurant at Ightham Mote (open till 15:30).
Tea: Numerous tea places (eg Caffe Nero on the High Street) and pubs (eg the Black Boy) in Sevenoaks.
The (recently refurbished) Brewhouse tea-room at Knole House closes at 4 in winter.The (recently recommended) Malabar Coffee House, 81 the High Street 01732 743 055 is open till 6.
T=swc.21
Sun, 01-Jan-17 8

New Year's Day Walk - South

Extra Walk 21 – Sevenoaks Circular
Length: 15.4km (9.6 miles) Toughness: 3/10

10:12 Ramsgate train from Victoria (Bromley South 10:30, Orpington 10:37) arriving at Sevenoaks at 10:46. [NB the usual service from Charing Cross to Sevenoaks is not operating today due to engineering works]

You have three options for the return journey: a fast service (33 mins) to Victoria at xx:18 and xx:48; a slower service (56 mins) to Victoria at xx:27 and xx:57, stopping at several additional stations; and a slow Thameslink service (64 mins) to Blackfriars at xx:00 and xx:30, calling at numerous stations in south-east London.

This is a repeat of the walk that was done last New Year’s Day and has four points to recommend it: the short train journey allows a latish start after your midnight celebrations; a National Trust café is available if the lunch pubs are very busy; it avoids strike-hit Southern rail services; and it’s a delightful walk that is deservedly popular at any time of the year.

The walk starts and finishes through Knole Park (NT) and follows leafy tracks and fields to Ightham Mote (NT) before retuning along the Greensand Way with fine views out to the south. If lunching at The Padwell, there’s a nice alternative route afterwards along a ridge, rejoining the main route close to Ightham Mote. The directions for this variant are no longer included in the main walk directions, but copies will be available for anyone intending to lunch at The Padwell.

On the outward leg of the walk we’ll probably stop briefly to toast the New Year with a traditional glass of bubbly.

The recommended lunch pubs are the The Padwell (01732 761532) or the more upmarket The Snail (01732 810233), both at Stone Street about 4 miles into the walk. Since both involve a detour and are likely to be very busy, it’s essential to phone them when setting out from Sevenoaks in case they’re fully booked. In that eventuality you can resort to the large self-service café at Ightham Mote, about 5 miles into the walk.

At teatime you’ll find that the renovated and expanded Brewhouse Café at Knole has finally reopened and has a unique display of eighteenth century servants portraits. It closes at 4:00pm, after which you’ll need to go to one of the cafés in the centre of Sevenoaks

You will need to download the Walk Directions.
Note the usual Charing Cross train is not running on Sunday morning but there are fast trains from Victoria and also trains from Blackfriars
Thanks to C & L for the Prosecco and pringles which 6 walkers enjoyed in Knowle Park. mixed. A mild day, the morning was mainly dry, then drizzle after lunch and heavier rain from about 15.30. We booked the Padwell where very nice home made food was served in enormous portions. A good day out in nice company, despite the damp afternoon.
2 SE London walkers were surprised to be the only ones on this walk, and even more surprised to see the previous note of six other walkers. Turns out we caught a train that arrived a few minutes earlier but failed to realise this (it seemed unlikely that two people would make the same mistake). Lunched at Ightham Mote and returned to Sevenoaks in time to catch the 14:57 and miss the worst of the rain.
Historical duplicate/misleading attendance numbers cleanup project: 8
Wed, 10-Aug-16 12

Midweek Day Walk - Sevenoaks circular

Sevenoaks Circular

Out via the National Trust's Knole Park, House, and Igtham Mote. Back by the Greensand Way along the escarpment of the Kent Downs.

Book 3* Walk 21 *online only

Length : 15½ km or 9½ miles

Toughness : 4 out of 10

Getting there : Catch the 10:33 am Tunbridge Wells train from London Cannon Street to alight at Sevenoaks.
Calling stations

  1. London Bridge (departs 10:37)
  2. New Cross (departs 10:43)
  3. Orpington (departs 10:56)

Meeting point : Sevenoaks Station at 11:05

Tickets : Buy a cheap day return to Sevenoaks

Brief Description

This is a fairly leasurely stroll not so far from London with great views from the escarpment during the afternoon section.
You may find full details of the walk here

Suggested Lunch stops

The Padwell Arms Stone Street Sevenoaks Kent TN15 0LQ t: 01732 761532
The Snail Stone St Rd, Seal, Sevenoaks TN15 0LT t: 01732 810233
Ightham Mote Mote Rd, Ivy Hatch, Sevenoaks TN15 0NT t: 01732 810378

The Snail is a more upmarket "foodie" establishment and Ightham Mote is a typical NT restaurant

Suggested Tea stops

It may be worth checking out how construction of the new NT restaurant at Knole park is progressing, but Walkers have found ...

The Malabar Coffee Bar open until 5:00 pm and just behind Lloyds bank at 81 High Street, Sevenoaks TN13 1LE t: 01732 74305

... to have a friendly service, excellent teas and yummy cakes.

Maps

OS Explorer : 147

Return train times

Frequent trains return from Sevenoaks to London.
Intend going
The new tea room at Knole is now open 10 5 after refurb and an extension and the bookshop inside Knole house (on the right past the entrance) does coffee. Various pubs including the Wetherspoons will also do non alcoholic drinks.
12 on this walk which has established itself as an autumn or winter favourite but also makes a fine summer outing particularly the superb post lunch stretch along undulating woodland paths with expansive views. The weather was fine and sunny with some cloud.
Four of us tried lunch at the Padwell Arms and the food was excellent with the vegan friendly vegetable curry particularly appreciated. The service was slow and a bit disorganised on a day when there were not many customers. A busy weekend visit may be frustrating! The pub interior is is a bit of a throwback with lots of knick knacks and a style perhaps best described as 1970s shabby chic?
Most people ate at Ightham Mote and we all met up again at the new NT cafe at Knole Park which has the usual range of delicious cakes and snacks. Also a new balcony seating area is near completion opening later this month and this is bound to prove very popular.
We all set off on the final leg to the station where we caught different trains depending on the destination station. An excellent day out with a good Wednesday turnout. Finally thanks to "Arthur" for the post; sorry you could not make it and get well soon.
Mon, 28-Mar-16 1

Easter Monday - Your choice of walks

Since none of the usual walk posters have put up an Easter Monday walk, I thought it might be nice to open the slot to suggestions. These were the ones received


--------------------------------------------------
SWC Walk 21 - Sevenoaks Circular
Length: 15.4km (9.6 miles)
"Near London, cheap rail fare, nice walk. No engineering works. No mud."
Lunch at Nat Trust or not useless pub: early start will get ahead of the crush
Train: Cannon Street 10.03 (London Bridge 10.06, New Cross 10.12, Orpington 10.25), arriving Sevenoaks 10.35
Fast trains also depart frequently from Charing Cross
Frequent return trains from Sevenoaks
For walk directions click here.


------------------------------------------------
Book 1 walk 2 - Wanborough to Godalming
Length: 12km, (7.5 miles)
9:45 train from Waterloo (9.52 Clapham Junction), changing at Guildford (arrive 10.23, depart 10.30), arriving at Wanborough at 10:36.

Buy a day return to Wanborough. On the return leg you should technically buy a single from Godalming to Guildford.

For walk directions click here.
"This walk incorporates fields, forests, and some lovely buildings along the way. It goes past the Watts Gallery, which is an interesting place to stop, and is open this Bank Monday. For those interested in Victorian paintings, especially the Pre-Raphaelites (of which I am a fan), this is an interesting little diversion in the middle of a lovely walk near the North Downs."
The lunch pub, the Withies Inn, appears to be open on Easter Monday: the Watts Gallery cafe is also open, so it is a backup.
Trains back from Godalming at are twice an hour, at xx:25 and xx:53 with no changes.

Wanborough Godalming.

At Point 2 in the directions, the path is often so muddy as to be impassable. However, there is a parallel footpath which is drier and which rejoins the route. It is about 200m further along Flexford Rd, just after the stream.
Not sure about the "no mud" description. There are some muddy stretches.
Roll call at Sevenoaks of one.No probs getting there is the car from Hastings. The reasons for delays and cancellations at the station included tunnel problems, line fires and trees. Take your pick. Someone was just pressing buttons I think. The sun shone and the puddles glistened. Much muddier than expected. NT cafe at Igtham Mote coped with SWC party of one. Knole House closed due to weather but park was open. Cafe is shut for refurbishment ready for the summer season. Good walk and company!
Wanborough to godalming. 1. Not surprising though as the trains were all messed up and the howling rain and wind during the night. Pretty muddy throughout and I was marching through a small stream at one point. The weather was mostly sunny with two short and light rain showers, but the wind was obnoxious all day. Thanks to the first commenter with the tip about the alternative footpath option. I had to use it, so I really appreciate it. The walk was otherwise lovely, especially the watts gallery and chapel, what a treat! I brought a sandwich so did not stop in at the pub but it was open. However, because godalming apparently doesn't have anything other than a Costa or Nero (not true btw, it had lovely cafes), I chose to have an early tea and cake at the watts gallery which was fantastic. Best Victoria sponge cake I have ever had
Wanborough to Godalming I was at Waterloo, but couldn't find you as trains were cancelled! (despite accosting several suspects). So effectively the roll call was 2, but I ended up going home and taking a walk up the river Lea to Broxbourne instead.
Nick

Fri, 01-Jan-16 20

New Year's Day Walk - A Gentle Walk on the Greensand Ridge


Sevenoaks Circular

Length: 15.4km (9.6 miles)
Toughness: 4 out of 10 t=swc.21 L=swc.21

10.07 Ramsgate train from London Victoria, arriving 10.45
or
10.07 Hastings train from Blackfriars, arriving at Sevenoaks at 10.49.

For walk directions, maps, gps files etc... click on the SWC walk 21 webpage.

This is an easy, pleasant walk a short train journey south of London. For many walkers it will need no introduction. It offers a nice mix of woodland and fields, fine views in the afternoon, and two National Trust properties.

As pubs are usually extremely busy on New year's Day, the self-service restaurant at Ightham Mote is the recommended lunch stop - it is open today but expect a queue - and there is also picnic area outside. Otherwise, the Padwell Arms pub is nearby. However, you'd need to ring them ahead of New Year's Day and see if you can book a table, if you want to eat at the pub.

For tea, Knole House has a kiosk (and a very small tea shop inside the main entrance) but the recommendation today is to continue into Sevenoaks, which has various tea/coffee shops and pubs to choose from.

Trains back from Sevenoaks station are very frequent with several services an hour.
Great choice for southerners!
20 or so walkers, some of whom diverted from the Henley walk due to trains being cancelled at Paddington. Thanks to Sean and Richard for bringing the bottles of champagne which were enjoyed in Knowle Park and to those who brought the snacks to go with them. There were nice views, no shortage of mud and the weather was dry and still (minor drizzle at one point for a short time). Being New Year's Day, there were the inevitable queues for food at Ightam Mote but plenty of free tables outside for those that ate there.






Apologies, that should have read thanks to Sean and Richard and Oona for bringing the bottles of champagne
Mon, 06-Apr-15 Sevenoaks Circular
Tue, 30-Dec-14 Sevenoaks Circular
Wed, 29-Oct-14 Sevenoaks Circular
Sat, 08-Mar-14 31 Sevenoaks Circular
Sat, 16-Nov-13 20 Sevenoaks Circular
Wed, 11-Sep-13 Sevenoaks Circular
Sun, 23-Dec-12 Sevenoaks Circular
Sat, 13-Oct-12 Sevenoaks Circular
Sat, 17-Dec-11 Sevenoaks Circular
Sun, 14-Aug-11 Sevenoaks Circular
Sat, 11-Sep-10 Sevenoaks Circular
Sun, 13-Jun-10 Sevenoaks Circular
Wed, 17-Feb-10 Sevenoaks Circular
Sun, 25-Oct-09 Sevenoaks Circular
Sun, 19-Apr-09 Sevenoaks Circular
Sun, 02-Nov-08 Sevenoaks Circular
Sat, 13-Sep-08 Sevenoaks Circular
Sun, 04-Nov-07 Sevenoaks Circular
Sat, 13-Oct-07 Sevenoaks Circular
Sun, 22-Apr-07 Sevenoaks Circular