|Length||13.7km (8.5 miles), or 16.4km (10.2 miles) using morning of Stonegate walk from Time Out Country Walks Volume Two|
|Toughness||4 out of 10: some hills, but relatively gentle gradients|
OS Landranger 199 covers the whole route from Stonegate to Robertsbridge
OS Explorer 136 covers all but the last mile into Robertsbridge
OS Explorer 124 covers Burwash to Robertsbridge
This is a hilly – but relatively gentle – walk through the High Weald, which is particular beautiful in April and late October or early November. In the spring month, it offers plenty of wild flowers and a rich array of hornbeam trees, which become a mass of catkins at this time, and during leaf fall it has plenty of fine autumn colour.
The walk shares a very short section of the start of walk 19, Stonegate Circular in Time Out Country Walks Volume Two, and like that walk visits the pretty ridgetop village of Burwash for lunch and Batemans, the former home of the writer Rudyard Kipling, now owned by the National Trust. But its route is otherwise quite different.
The morning is borrowed from the Stonegate Variations document on this website, but from Bateman’s onwards, the walk strikes out into completely new territory, climbing by gentle stages up onto a ridge that gives you a fine backwards view towards Burwash. It then crosses an interesting country estate before descending via another ridge, with fine views, into Robertsbridge. Note that this route is quite different from the Stonegate to Robertsbridge routes outlined in Stonegate Variations
|Walk Options||For a longer morning of 6km (3.7 miles), use the standard morning route of walk 19, Stonegate Circular in Time Out Country Walks Volume Two. This lengthens the walk to 16.4km (10.2 miles) in total|
|Travel||Stonegate is on the Hastings line and is served by hourly trains from Charing Cross and London Bridge taking one hour ten minutes. The first train after 10am will be quite adequate to get you to lunch in time, and as this walk has a short morning, you could even take a train after 11am. Buy a day return to Robertsbridge, which is two stops further down the line. There is ample paid car parking at Stonegate.|
|Lunch and tea||
See Walk 19 in Time Out Country Walks Volume Two for details lunch options in Burwash, which are only 3.3km (2 miles) into the walk by the route described below. They include the Rose & Crown pub, about half way up the high street, the Lime Tree Tea Rooms almost opposite, and the Bear Inn, about 90 metres west.
If you are planning to visit Batemans, it is less than a mile or so beyond Burwash, and has a National Trust tea room, serving hot meals at lunchtime (until 2.30pm or so). This also makes a nice (if early) tea stop. To access the tea room, you have to pay to go into Batemans, however – unless, of course, you are a National Trust member.
After that, there are no further refreshment stops until you reach Robertsbridge, 9.2km (5.7 mile) walk, further on from Batemans. Here the Ostrich by the station is a pleasantly quirky pub with a nice garden, or you can walk up to the village High Street for other pub options, such as The George.
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Out: (not a train station)
Back: (not a train station)
National Rail: 03457 48 49 50 • Travelline SE (bus times): 0871 200 2233 (12p/min) • TFL (London) : 0343 222 1234
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Full directions for this walk are in a PDF file (link above) which you can print, or download on to a Kindle, tablet, or smartphone.
This is just the introduction. This walk's detailed directions are in a PDF available from wwww.walkingclub.org.uk