Picnic Spot near Compasses Inn

SWC Walk Book 1 Walk 53 - Wye Circular

20-Sep-17 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

swcwalks book1 walk53 banner

Wye and Stour Valley from Wye Down

SWC Walk Book 1 Walk 53 - Wye Circular

20-Sep-17 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

swcwalks book1 walk53 walkicon

The Compasses Inn, Sole Street

SWC Walk Book 1 Walk 53 - Wye Circular

20-Sep-17 • thomasgrabow on Flickr

swcwalks book1 walk53 walkicon

Hawthorn

Wye Circular

09-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

book1 swcwalks walk53

Stitchwort

Wye Circular

09-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

book1 swcwalks walk53

View over Wye

Wye Circular

09-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

book1 swcwalks walk53

Spring flowers

Wild Garlic and ..not sure about the blue one... most likely Ground Ivy . Wye Circular

09-May-08 • moontiger on Flickr

book1 swcwalks walk53

Wye Circular walk

Out over the North Downs with breathtaking views to lunch in Sole Street. Back up over the Downs, then returning along the Great Stour river. Muddy in winter.

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.

Date # Post
Wed, 17-Oct-18 11

Wednesday Walk Wye to Chilham - The Crundale Downs, Sole Street, Godmersham Park and Chilham Castle

Wye to Chilham Morning leg of Book 1 Walk 53, and afternoon leg of SWC 138

Length: 17.7 km (11 miles)
Toughness: 6 out of 10

Either
London St Pancras: 10-08 hrs Margate service
Arrive Ashford International: 10-46 hrs. Change trains
Leave Ashford International: 11-05 hrs Canterbury West service
Arrive Wye: 11-11 hrs

or - for South Londoners
London Victoria: 09-25 hrs Canterbury West service (as above) Bromley South: 09-42 hrs
Arrive Wye: 11-11 hrs

Return

Chilham to St Pancras: 17-13 (change at Ashford International -AI), 18-13 (AI), 18-44 (AI), 18-46 hrs (change at Canterbury West)
Chilham to Victoria: 16-13, 17-13 and 18-13 hrs

Rail ticket: buy a day return to Chilham


This mix-and-match walk takes - arguably - the best legs of two walks which, when put together, should give you a delightful walk.

The morning leg is the Book 1, Walk 53 - Wye Circular walk, which takes you up onto the Crundale Downs, then down to the Church of St Mary in the village of Crundale, before you head back uphill, steeply, on quiet roads to the village of Sole Street. You might be lucky and manage to obtain lunch at the gourmet lunch pub, the Compasses Inn (01227-700300) but you usually have to book in advance. Best bring a picnic, and have a beer in the pub.

The afternoon leg follows the homeward leg of SWC 138 through woods and valleys - with some stunning views - then through Godmersham Park and on to Chilham, for tea at cosy Shelly's Tea Room. It's then a fifteen minute walk to Chilham railway station for your journey home.
T=1.53

Walk Directions: here for the Book One walk. L=1.53

Here for the afternoon leg of your walk



I am hoping to come on this walk, but will drive to Chilham and leave my car there, taking train to Wye, arriving about 8 minutes after the train from Ashford. Is anyone willing to ring me (07973 139358) to confirm I'm coming and persuade the group to dally for a few minutes? In return, I can offer lift for up to 4 from Chilham (best cream tea in Kent) to Wye or Ashford stations. (Chilham only has 1 train an hour.)
If you can resist having a beer in the pub, the best place for your picnic is about 15 minutes into the Chilham afternoon where you come out onto a beautiful downland escarpment with fine views. Another nice spot is at the church three quarters of the way through the morning.
I wonder if we will have the pleasure of Marcus's company on one of these walks
jfk
Dear Brian

If i manage to get the right train I would be happy to ring you and try to hold the party back

Best,

Jane
In reply to Jane, I hope to be back walking with SWC mid week walkers "soon", when my health permits but not quite yet. I hope you all enjoy what is one of my favourite mix and match walks.
Given that Marcus is sadly not intending to come on this walk I may bring a canine friend with me. Any objections? speak now or forever hold your peace. thanks
...as it says on this very website in the 'New Members FAQ' section: "Please read The Rambler's advice for taking dogs on a country walk beforehand, paying particular attention to 'sheep' and 'cows'." There is a link there to a pdf.
Can't come now anyway commitment, happy walking!
Apologies, I wasn't able to make this walk after all, but thanks to Jane for offering to ring. Hope you all have a good day.
11 on this lovely outing. It is a pity its poster could not join us: we hope to see him back on the trail soon.

It was grey and drizzly in London, but sunny when we arrived at Wye. There was a line of cloud to the north west but it did not reach us till around 1pm. Even then the sun reappeared as we got to Chilham village. So sun then cloud then sun.

Everyone, I think, was on the high speed train apart from two who came from Tonbridge. Nearly all of us brought picnic lunches, several of us eating by the church late morning. Two ate in the pub, which was decently busy but not booked out. The two lunchers only had starters, however, which were little more than canapés. The rest of us had drinks.

In the afternoon a nice walk along a scenic ridge, then down to Godmersham and along to Chilham. There was a 50/50 split here between pub and tea room, with outside tables being put to good use in both places. The ones outside the tea room, sadly, were by an insignificant lane that turned out to be a regular M1, with one car passing every 30 seconds or so, blowing hot exhaust straight into our nostrils. The scones were huge, however and the cream proper clotted.

5.13 train home, mixing with the workers. Remember work?
Fri, 27-Jul-18 4

Friday Evening [Full Moon] Special Wye Circular

A special map-led Friday full moon Wye Circular.....to visit one of the most quirky pubs ever.....the Timber Batts Inn in Bodsham...basic website details below in comments (thanks A) -- but you can also look them up on Facebook. Some of us frequented this eclectic establishment on a Sunday walk earlier in the year and thought that it would make a fun evening destination....Added bonus...possible glimpses of a full moon on the return to Wye....T=1.53

Walk details:

Train: 15:12 Margate train from London St. Pancras (Stratford International 15:18) changing at Ashford (arriving 15:50; departing 16:05), arriving Wye 16:11. Return trains are at 21:56 and 22:56 (changing at Ashford). Buy a day return to Wye.

Distance: 12.2 miles/19.7 km

Difficulty: 6.5 out of 10

This new map-led route initially follows the original Book 1 route from Wye to the Memorial Crown and slightly beyond. It then diverts to Bodsham for an early dinner at the unique Timber Batts Inn. After dinner, we will circle back to the North Downs escarpment. Hopefully, with views of the rising moon in its full eclipse state (roughly 21:00-22:00)….You can see the route as the "blue" alternative route on the OS Map tab of Book 1: Walk 53.

Enjoy the walk and happy moongazing!

https://the timber batts pub forge.business.site/
I hope that means a good view of the eclipse, cloud permitting?
hopefully.....we should be back by the Memorial Crown by about 21:00 with good views South....
You should also get a fine view of the Red Planet, rising in the south east at nightfall. Its orange colour is unmistakable and shows up even more clearly in binoculars.
Perhaps it was the extreme heat of the day or the forecast evening thunderstorms or just an attack of the "work ethic"....whatever the reason, just 4 free spirits met at Ashford for the connection to Wye under initially hot clear conditions with cooling breeze on the downs followed by dramatic thunderstorms for the inaugural late afternoon and evening walk. I think most agreed it was a lovely time of day for a country walk. We all enjoyed the Friday night special pizzas al fresco from a pizza oven in the forge and just as we were planning to leave noticed some rather dark clouds with lightening approaching... A good choice was made to see what was to follow....heavy down pour with dramatic thunder and lightening.....so, we opted for another drink inside and spent 45 minutes examining some of the curiosities of the pub more closely...before heading out in what had become light drizzle with the occasional flash of thunder and lightening...Alas, the clouds along the southern horizon proved too thick for any moongazing.....back in Wye we had a night cap before the 22:54 train.....
Sun, 25-Mar-18 9

Sunday Walk - The North Downs: Wye Circular (Version of...)

Length: 17.7 km (11.0 mi) [or longer, see below]
Ascent/Descent: 395 m; Net Walking Time: ca. 4 ½ hours
Toughness: 5 out of 10
Take the 09.10 train to Ramsgate from Charing Cross, (09.13 W’loo East, 09.21 LBG), arrives Wye 10.38.
Alternatively, take the 09.09 Margate train from St. Pancras, (09.16 Stratford I’nal), change at Ashford (arr. 09.47, dep. 10.11), arrives Wye 10.17 (or wait in Ashford for above train).
Return trains: xx.21 to Victoria, xx.55 to Charing Cross (shave off 30-60 mins in each case by changing at Ashford onto a High Speed train to St. Pancras).
This is a very nice walk in its normal version that suffers from an uppity gastro-pub that doesn’t really want walkers, definitely doesn’t really want walk-in custom, does want customers to turn up exactly on time and expects customers to settle for a long and drink-fuelled meal. That’s not great a combination for the average SWC-punter. So why not try a slightly different route (longer, you guessed it), that goes past one or two other pubs to check them out for a possible revised route? Check the route map on our webpage here for an idea.
The description for the normal walk goes like this:
“This walk goes high up on the Crundale Downs (“crun” in Old English meant chalk, and ‘dala’ meant dell or valley), with breathtaking views. The walk comes to an isolated Norman church at Crundale, then on to a 15th century inn for lunch. The walk then passes Crundale House and the manor of Olantigh, crosses the River Great Stour and returns to Wye through its churchyard, for tea at a teashop at the bottom of Church Street or at a pub next to the railway station.”
Lunch: The Compasses Inn in Crundale (8.8 km, food to 14.30) on the normal version of the walk. You should book a table for 13.00 hours or thereabouts to guarantee you’re not late for the booking.
Else it’s either The Bowl Inn in Hastingleigh or The Timber Batts Pub & Forge in Bodsham.
Tea: The Kings Head or The Wye Coffee Shop and Kitchen (open to 17.00) in the centre of Wye, or The Tickled Trout near the station.
For walk directions, map, height profile, and gpx/kml files click here. T=1.53.a
Extension via Hastingsleigh only adds 3.4 km; Extension via Hastingsleigh and Bodsham adds 5.0 km.
Planning to catch the train from Charing Cross instead of St Pancras. Anyone else?
Sure
9 takers for this early start (considering the clocks had gone forward overnight) in dry and warm weather. All walked the 'long' extension via Hastingleigh and Bodsham. And all enjoyed that very much. Plenty of quiet coombes with long views to walk through (i.e. also lots of up and down), a CAMRA recommended pub in Hastingleigh (cash only), and then an absolute gem, the most quirky pub around, and that by a country mile: The Timber Batts and Forge in Bodsham. You have to see it to believe it. AND the food was tasty (burgers and fish & chips only, Pizzas on Friday evenings). AND the staff was nice. We will be back.
We got back to Wye early enough for one to dash to get the 17.22 train, all else went to the pub for a chill down drink.
Oh: no mud! I repeat: no mud! Not even in the many arable fields.
But loads of daffs, in lots of places, but in Wye the churchyard was practically all daffodils.
Wed, 23-Nov-16 14

Wednesday Walk - The North Downs: Wye Circular

Length: 17.7 km (11.0 mi)
Ascent/Descent: 395 m; Net Walking Time: ca. 4 ½ hours
Toughness: 5 out of 10
Take the 10.08 train to Margate from St. Pancras, (10.15 Stratford I’nal), change at Ashford (arr. 10.46, dep. 11.05) arriving Wye at 11.11.
The train you are changing on to is the 09.22 from Victoria to Canterbury West.
Return trains: xx.21 hours to Victoria, xx.51/2/3 to Charing X (shave off 30-40 mins in each case by changing at Ashford onto a High Speed train to St. Pancras).
This walk goes high up on the Crundale Downs (“crun” in Old English meant chalk, and ‘dala’ meant dell or valley), with breathtaking views. The walk comes to an isolated Norman church at Crundale, then on to a fifteenth century inn for lunch. The walk then passes Crundale House and the manor of Olantigh, crosses the River Great Stour and returns to Wye through its churchyard, for tea at a teashop at the bottom of Church Street or at a pub next to the railway station.
Lunch will be at The Compasses Inn in Crundale (8.8 km, food to 14.30). A table has been booked for 13.15 hours.
For walk directions, map, height profile, and gpx/kml files click here.
Next Week: SWC 44 Didcot Circular 22.1 km/13.8 mi, 3/10 rating.
T=1.53
12 walkers off the HS1 train at Ashford, who decided to rather take an imminent (delayed) train than waiting for the posted train from Victoria, getting us to Wye 10 minutes earlier than expected. 1 then waited at Wye for possible walkers off that Victoria train (in vain), while all else sped off.
2 other walkers had indeed tried to catch that Victoria train, but missed, so we learned later. They were therefore an hour behind (and later skipped the lunch pub and the out and back to it, so were only caught by the main group a few minutes before Wye).
So 14 in total in dry conditions.
Some of the many field crossings in the last quarter of the walk were a bit soggy after the recent rains, else a very fine walk, with plenty of quiet valleys and splendid views off the Downs.
75 minutes for lunch at the glorious Compasses Inn with its two fireplaces (some had 3 courses...) and a 10 minute delay in the afternoon caused by a very large herd of sheep being herded down the very lane we had to go up (let's just say they were not very co operative), meant we only got to the Tickled Trout by the station at 16.35, to find it had winter opening hours (shut until 17.00)!
So 5 went back up into the village to the King's Head for a bevvie, which proved to be a very good choice. Do we have/can we concoct a walk that has this pub as a lunch destination?
A bottle of Rioja was purchased at the Co Op by the SWC Provisions Manager for the long journey back...
Sat, 25-Jul-15

Saturday First Walk

I will be standing down shortly - I go away in September
So a new volunteer poster is needed - or volunteers: it is perfectly OK to volunteer for every other week or even one week in four.
Traditionally this slot has been chosen from Book 1 or Book 2 walks and the feeling is that it would be good to continue this.

The work involves choosing a walk - choosing a train time and posting it.
The posting team will be very happy to give the new poster/s support
To volunteer email saturdaywalkersATyahooDOTcoDOTuk (or post a comment if you have a question).

Meanwhile here is this weeks walk
Book 1 Walk 53 Wye Circular
18 Km (11.2 miles)
7 out of 10

map available here
https://www.walkingclub.org.uk/book_1/walk_53/map.shtml


Take the 09.22 from Victoria to Wye arriving at 11.09
or
St Pancras at 10.08 (Stratford Int 10.15) with a change at Ashford to also arrive at 11.09


Lunch
at The Compasses in Sole St ( http://www.thecompassescrundale.co.uk/ 01227700300 )
From the comments section
The menu is a mix of fairly gourmet mains at around £14-15, but also with a Ramblers Menu which includes huge doorstep sandwiches, nice soup, sausage and mash. They are very walker-friendly and urged us not to take our muddy boots off.
I just rang and they have tables available for next Saturday for lunch

Tea
at Kings Head or Crown Coffee in Wye
There is a new pub in Wye called the Barbers, which is a micro pub.

More info and directions here
https://www.walkingclub.org.uk/book_1/walk_53/index.shtml


Thank you Bridie for all your hard work posting walks.
anyone feel like getting a bit later train ?
Excuse me, I am a new joiner. What does toughness 7 out of 10 mean? Is this path suitable for hiking beginners? Do we need to use both of our hands and foots on any part of the path? Thanks.
No, no, no, nothing like that. None of our walks require the use of hands! It just means it has a few hills. Actually I am a bit puzzled why this is a 7 out of 10. It starts on the flat, has a fairly gently graded climb up onto the downs, and then is mainly flat or undulating all morning apart from one steep ish walk up a road to lunch. After lunch there is some ups and downs and then a descent to a valley and a finish along the bottom of that. I would say it is a very good walk for a beginner.
Yes Iwanted to get a later train but it will be very late now
Eliz parker, Sun 26 Jul 15, 17:08
Just thought that I'd let people know that there was a problem with the compass pub on this saturday's walk.the owner rang me to say that sat walkers were not welcome, as some walkers upset the staff! Not sure who.
Sat, 11-Apr-15 12 Wye Circular
Wed, 01-Oct-14 Wye Circular
Sat, 27-Jul-13 7 Wye Circular
Sat, 18-Feb-12 Wye Circular
Sun, 23-Oct-11 Wye Circular
Sun, 15-May-11 Wye Circular
Sat, 10-Jul-10 Wye Circular
Sun, 13-Sep-09 Wye Circular
Sat, 05-Jul-08 Wye Circular
Sat, 10-May-08 Wye Circular
Sun, 20-Jan-08 Wye Circular
Sun, 09-Sep-07 Wye Circular
Sat, 07-Apr-07 Wye Circular