Above the Shoreham Cross

30-Nov-16 • Sean O'Neill

swcwalk289, swcwalk59, swcwalks


Along Cockermouth Road

30-Nov-16 • Sean O'Neill

swcwalk289, swcwalk59, swcwalks


Friendly donkey

30-Nov-16 • Sean O'Neill

swcwalk289, swcwalk59, swcwalks


Ancient hornbeams, Lullingstone Park

30-Nov-16 • Sean O'Neill

swcwalk289, swcwalk59, swcwalks


Late autumn sunshine, Lullingstone Park

30-Nov-16 • Sean O'Neill

swcwalk289, swcwalk59, swcwalks


Late autumn sunshine, Lullingstone Park

30-Nov-16 • Sean O'Neill

swcwalk289, swcwalk59, swcwalks


Late autumn sunshine, Lullingstone Park

30-Nov-16 • Sean O'Neill

swcwalk289, swcwalk59, swcwalks

Shoreham Circular (Figure-of-8) walk


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: Tue, 19-Jan-21

Date # Post
Thu, 09-Jul-20 3

Evening Walk: Lovely Lullingstone Lavender near Shoreham

SWC 289: Shoreham Circular (Short North Loop)

Distance: Approximately 5.5 miles or 9 km for those more metrically minded

Difficulty: 3 out of 10

Meet: Shoreham Rail Station 19:00 (on public transport the 18:24 Hasting train from London Bridge with change in Sevenoaks 18:48 arrival/18:52 departure should work)

Return: 21:32; 21:45; 22:02; 22:15; 22:32 and 22:45 (to a variety of London-bound destinations)

Something a bit different and a little further afield for our evening repertoire…..I have been interested in posting this short country walk as an evening lavender outing for a couple of years – but the walk usually gets snatched up for a full outing at this time of year – so here is our chance….

The walk route passes by a usually very impressive lavender field at Castle Farm which should be in good bloom now…

Unfortunately, most of the pubs in Shoreham stop serving evening food rather early (usually about 8:30pm) – but we should be able to at least find a drink and some crisps or nuts at the end of the walk in one of the 4 pubs in the village….

More information about the route can be found here.

Enjoy the walk!


Lavender, even
Just 3 familiar faces on this evening outing....making covid compliance a breeze...Notwithstanding the heavy slightly muggy evening air, it was a very colorful outing with vistas of green trees, golden barely fields and of course the crop of honor, purple lavender....with various fields in different stages of development some quite bright and others either pre or past peak...

A very pleasant evening out, with ample time for a post walk bevie in the outdoor space at the Kings Arms (the only one of the 4 pubs open this evening but the Crown is apparently also functioning and the George is being renovated).
Sun, 21-Jul-19 20

Sunday Walk – Lavender fields on the Shoreham Figure-of-8

Extra Walk 289a – Shoreham Figure-of-8
Length: 15½ km (9.6 miles). Toughness: 5/10

10:12 Sevenoaks train from Blackfriars, calling at lots of stations in south London and arriving Shoreham (Kent) at 11:09. Or take the 10:25 Canterbury West train from Victoria and change at Swanley (arr 10:51, dep 11:00) for the Sevenoaks train. Make sure you buy a ticket to Shoreham (Kent), not S-by-Sea.

Trains back from Shoreham to Blackfriars are half-hourly, at xx:08 & xx:38. You could change at Bromley South for Victoria, but you wouldn't get back much quicker.

This is a figure-of-8 walk in the familiar surroundings of the Darent valley: a southern loop via Otford followed by a northern loop via Lullingstone, where the extensive lavender fields of Castle Farm should be in full bloom. As the village at its centre has four lunch pubs and two or three tea places as well, you shouldn't have a problem getting fed and watered en route.

Note that I'm suggesting the shorter version of this figure-of-8 walk, described in the text as the Alternative Walk. Contrarians who do the longer Main Walk instead (by accident or design) might not encounter the others for the rest of the day – a blessing or a curse, depending on your mood.

You'll need to bring the walk directions from the Shoreham Figure-of-8 walk page. Clicking 'Alternative Walk' under Walk Options will save two or three sheets of paper and hopefully make them easier to follow. T=swc.289.a
Hi. Is there an admission charge for the farm? Thank you.
There's no charge to visit the farm shop. Access to the lavender fields is by a 1¼ hour guided tour only, but the footpath passes quite close to them. I've put a link to the farm's website in the walk post. Sean
Thank you.
A warm mostly cloudy muggy day. 12 off the Blackfriars train, 6 off the Victoria train (which was delayed just enough to miss the connection at Swanley. So 4 went on to Otford and picked up the walk there and 2 changed at Swanley for a later connection). 2 drove. How’s your maths? I make that 20 It’s worth mentioning that Blackfriars is an abysmal place to get a ticket early Sunday. No windows open and a massive queue for the one (ONE!!) working ticket machine. The walk itself was fine. Very scenic. There were coos and purrs of praisefor the author. Even grumpy old Mr Tiger managed to remain vaguely positive, even on the final ascent up to the Shoreham Cross.
Most ate at the Crown, one or two at the Kings Arms. Tea for some was at the Battle of Britain Museum, for others, at the Honeypot which has reopened. There was lavender and some was brought back.

Sun, 14-Apr-19

Explore the Darent Valley

Shoreham Figure-of-Eight
Length: 19.8km (12.3 miles), 15.1km (9.4 miles), or 10.5km (6.5 miles)
Toughness: from 6/10 to 3/10

09:42 Sevenoaks train from Blackfriars, calling at numerous south London stations, including Bromley South (10:18) and arriving at Shoreham (Kent) at 10:39.
Or 09:55 Ashford International train from Victoria, changing at Bromley South (arr. 10:11; dep. 10:18).

Return trains from Otford to Blackfriars are at xx:05 and xx:35 (journey time 59 minutes), calling at Shoreham at xx:08 and xx:38. Change at Bromley South for Victoria. Return trains from Otford direct to Victoria are at xx:31 (journey time 42 minutes).
Buy a return to Shoreham (Kent) (or to Otford if you intend to finish there).

There are many interlinking walks in the Darent Valley, and this figure-of-8 walk provides a range of shorter or longer options, while allowing everyone to stay together until lunchtime or later. The morning loop follows a route through Lullingstone Park to Lullingstone Castle and back along the Darent Valley Way to Shoreham for lunch. The afternoon loop then goes through hillside nature reserves southwards to Otford, and back along more wooded hills to Shoreham once more. Those wanting only a short walk can finish at lunchtime, those wanting a slightly longer one can finish mid-afternoon in Otford, while the rest can complete the full figure-of-8 back to Shoreham.

There are four lunch pubs in Shoreham, details of which are on the walk’s introduction page.

The walk directions can be downloaded here.

Sat, 07-Jul-18 24

Saturday Walk – A lavender farm in the Darent valley (Shoreham Circular)

Extra Walk 289 – Shoreham Figure-of-8
Length: 19¾ km (12.3 miles), with shorter options. Toughness: 6/10

09:46 Sevenoaks train from Blackfriars, calling at lots of stations in south London and arriving Shoreham at 10:45. Or take the 09:55 Ashford train from Victoria and change at Bromley South (arr 10:11, dep 10:23) for the above train.

A return to Otford (the next station down the line) instead of Shoreham (Kent) would allow you to duck out there in the afternoon; whatever you do, don't buy a ticket to Shoreham-by-Sea

Trains back from Shoreham to Blackfriars are half-hourly, at xx:02 & xx:32. Change at Bromley South if you want to return to Victoria.

We had a Saturday walk in the Darent valley at the end of May but it should be a good time of year for another outing as this walk goes past some extensive lavender fields at Castle Farm. It hasn't yet had a Saturday posting and although there's some overlap with the Otford-Eynsford walk, there should be enough new stretches to keep your interest.

The walk is a true figure-of-8 in that it does a loop to the north of Shoreham before lunch, and one to the south afterwards. You can shorten it by diverting to Otford station in mid-afternoon, or simply by heading straight back to Shoreham station after lunch.

There are four pubs in the village so you should be able to find one which appeals for lunch. It also has a couple of tea rooms for refreshment at the end of the walk, now that the Honeypot Tea Rooms have reopened; the other is at the Aircraft Museum. And there's always the four pubs…

You'll need to bring the walk directions from the Shoreham Figure-of-8 walk page. Clicking 'Main Walk' under Walk Options will hide a lot of unnecessary directions for an alternative walk which does a shorter version of the two loops the other way round. T=swc.289
I was out on a different lavender walk yesterday and it's in full bloom at the moment and the scent is wonderful.
The clicking main or any other version to hide non relevant sections doesn't work in my browser even though I've given permission for features to be displayed. It would be very helpful to have a list of which sections go with each of the walk variants.
MG: This sounds like a 'permissions' thing. In Internet Explorer's Options (Security tab) I've listed the SWC site as a 'Trusted site' with a 'Medium low' level, and that seems to work.

Some time ago our webmaster silently changed the site's name from to and I had to add the new site name (starting https). Have you checked that?

I'm not very familiar with browsers other than IE but if you say what you're using someone else might be able to help.

For tomorrow's walk we're simply doing §1 10, plus the final instructions back to the station (if you need them) in §17. If you want to call it a day after lunch and watch the football, skip §5 10. Unless you want to be creative and mix'n'match, you won't need §11 16 which are for the Alternative walk. Hope that helps.
Clarification appreciated!
24 people turned up for this alternative to the various sports on offer on this hot hot hot day. Why else would the lofty peaks of the Kentish Serenghetti hold such an allure? The starting pistol sounded and they were off, along the river and up the first of several hills, as if a lion was after them. One seasoned walker took up the rear, stolidly plodding along at a measured pace, never complaining, always cheerful, with a smile for everyone.
The advance party kept up their pace past the flowering lavender fields, pausing only to devour the lavender flavoured ice cream available at The Hop Shop, (”can’t taste the lavender” one said later). Then they were off again, the imaginary lion only inches behind them. I came across several of the front runners in the Crown. I never saw the others again (doo doo doo). They presumably distributed themselves amongst the other refreshment establishments in Shoreham. How many completed the course? I don’t know. I myself only managed a figure of 6 finishing at Otford and I know of at least two others only managed a figure of 0. Could I have made it back to Shoreham? “No way, Jose “– as they say in this part of the Serenghetti. As it was, it took copious amounts of fermented apple juice to bring my core temperature down to something still capable of sustaining life.
Nice walk though, with plenty wild chalkland flowers and plenty butterflies and one particularly colourful big one that wouldn’t stay still long enough to be identified. Possibly the one Val Doonican sang about. The “far corner” in the field atop Fackendon Down was a bit hard to find but I located it eventually by retracing my steps back from the far corner.

Wed, 26-Jul-17 9

Wednesday Walk - Shoreham (Kent) Figure of 8 [New Walk]

Length: 19.8 km (12.3 mi)
Ascent/Descent: approx. 360m; Net Walking Time: 5 hours
Toughness: 6 out of 10
Take the 10.00 Sevenoaks train from St. Pancras I’nal (10.05 Farringdon, 10.12 Blackfriars, 10.16 Elephant & Castle and all stations via Bromley South), arrives Shoreham (Kent) 11.04.
From Victoria: take the 10.22 Canterbury West train and change at Bromley South (10.38/10.44).
Return trains are on xx.10 and on xx.40.
New walk covering the familiar area of the Darent Valley between Eynsford and Otford: two loops centred on Shoreham, with plenty of options to shorten the walk, and even one to lengthen it (a wee bit).
“The northern loop initially follows the route of Book 1 Walk 23 (Otford to Eynsford) and takes a similar route through Lullingstone Park, an attractive landscape of chalk grassland and ancient woodland with an internationally important collection of veteran trees. It comes out by Lullingstone Castle, a historic manor house with limited opening hours, but its grounds contain an unusual parish church (open to the public at all times) and a World Garden. The route back to Shoreham is along the Darent Valley Path and passes extensive lavender fields at Castle Farm, while in Shoreham itself The Mount Vineyard is sometimes open for tastings.
The southern loop goes through a couple of small nature reserves on the hillside to the south-east of Shoreham and joins the route of Extra Walk 59 (Eynsford Circular) into and through the village of Otford, passing its scale model of the Solar System. The village has many interesting old buildings and the full route takes you past the ruins of Otford Palace, a rival to Hampton Court in Tudor times. The remainder of this loop follows the ‘longer afternoon’ route of Walk 59 along the wooded hills on the western side of the valley.”
Lunch: There are four pubs in Shoreham, passed after 9–10 km: the Crown and the Two Brewers on the High Street, followed by the Kings Arms and Ye Olde George Inn on Church Street.
Tea: Pubs as above plus - en route back to Shoreham - the Otford Tea Rooms at the back of the Hospices of Hope (open to 17.00) and the Pond View Café (open to 16.30). There are also two pubs on the High Street in Otford.
For summary, map, height profile, walk directions and gpx/kml files click here.
T=swc.289 Next Week: A Brockenhurst walk
Weather fore cast doe not look promising tomorrow. Will anyone do the walk even it is raining?
Yes. People will turn up. There may well be some rain fir a while, which will make us appreciate the sun more when it emerges, and emerge it will. Often. Take a mack.
I ll be doing it
8 walkers off the train, and 1 other an hour behind due to some problems with a connecting train, i.e. 9 in drizzle to lunch then overcast and gloomy conditions.
Nearly having struggled to get out of the station, never mind the proverbial car park, a good pace was had, spurred on by the annoying drizzle. This restricted views from the many ridges and viewpoints en route, but the morning loop through Shoreham and up through Lullingstone and Preston Hill Country Park was full of delights nevertheless: varied woods, large wildflower meadows throughout the Country Park, Lullingstone Castle and parish church, the Darent River Path, several lavender fields and a hop one as well.
The group somehow lost their leader early on, who in the drizzle wasn't in the mood for waiting, so arrived much earlier at lunch in Shoreham. The Crown provided steady quality (although we later thought that maybe the Two Brewers would've been the better choice).
The afternoon is somewhat less interesting, with Fackenham Down, Otford Palace and Polhill Bank the highlights. Drinks at The Kings Arms for some, 17.10 train for the majority (so they thought, but the train was cancelled).
Sun, 05-Mar-17 3

Sunday Walk – New Walk in the Darent Valley

New Walk – Shoreham Figure-of-8
Length: 15½ km (9.6 miles). Toughness: 5/10

09:42 Sevenoaks train from Blackfriars, calling at lots of stations in south London and arriving Shoreham at 10:34. Make sure that you buy a ticket to Shoreham (Kent), not the much more expensive Shoreham-by-Sea.

Trains back are half-hourly, at 09 & 39 minutes past. Note that there are no Southeastern services to/from Victoria this Sunday, but you might be able to change at Bromley South for a fast train to Cannon Street.

With the long-running disruption to Southern train services the Darent valley (in Southeastern's territory) has become a popular area for walk posters, so my apologies for inflicting yet another one on Sunday walkers. This misleadingly-named “New Walk” is really a few new bits tacked onto some more familiar stretches, so I hope it won't seem too stale.

On Sunday I suggest doing the Alternative Walk (option a) and saving the longer Main Walk for a summer outing, but of course everyone can choose for themselves. However, the two halves are done in a different order so a splinter group might not meet up with the main group again (especially as Shoreham offers a choice of four pubs for lunch). If you have a favourite hostelry you might want to book a table there when you set off, but I'd be surprised if you couldn't squeeze in somewhere. As it's the first Sunday of the month the Honeypot Tea Rooms should be open (you can check this on your first loop through the village), but if not the same pubs should be able to refresh you for the journey home.

You'll need to print the walk directions from this temporary New Walk page. Clicking 'a. Alternative Walk' under Walk Options will hide a lot of unnecessary directions as well as ensuring that you set off in the right direction. T=swc.289.a
Thank you, very nice walk, enjoyed it this weekend. Just a little correction, the start of the paragraph 1 (quoted below)leads towards Otford rather than to Shoreham high street. I think it stayed from the original walk.
"From the station forecourt go down a flight of steps near the footbridge and turn right onto Station Road, passing under the railway bridge. Shortly after passing the entrance to Darenth Valley Golf Club you join the Darent Valley Path1 (DVP), which comes in from a footpath on the left."
This comment is for doing the full walk from instruction #1. The alternative walk start from #6. I think the above comment does not apply.
3, sunshine all day. Three walkers ignored heavy rain forecast and were reawarded with sunshine all day (except a brief downpour while we were in the pub for lunch). Waterproof were off, sunglasses and sun creams were on. Lunch at George Inn with Sunday roast, a visit to the Hob farm, tea in RAF tearoom in Shoreham. A great day out in good company. Does the weatherman ever lose his job when he gets the forecast wrong?....