Thursday, 19 February 2009

Lewes to Polegate - Going the Extra Mile

Our Walks Organiser, Jane Rosoux, sent in this post and the photographs too. Jane was on a joint Hampstead / South Bank Group ramble last Saturday, 14th February.

"Ten intrepid ramblers set out from Lewes Station at 10.45 am, two hours after leaving Victoria Station."

"The party consisted of the leader, Tim Johnson (Centre, above), and myself from the Hampstead Group plus 4 from the South Bank Group, 2 from the Blackheath Group and 1 each from the Kensington, Chelsea and Westminster and North West London Groups."

"We started nearly an hour later than planned because of engineering works between Three Bridges and Lewes and a consequent rather bumpy bus journey in an elderly double-decker bus"...

"The weather was dry and slightly warmer than in recent days and one of our number soon removed his T-shirt after a steep climb up Saxon Down. We then dropped down to Glynde and had fairly level

but very muddy going past West Firle and Charleston Farmhouse to reach Selmeston at 1.50 pm where 6 members of the party enjoyed delicious food at the 'Barley Mow' pub, well deserved after 9 strenuous miles."

"After lunch we climbed up to the South Downs Way then dropped

down to Alfriston to cross the Cuckmere River, which was still high after recent snow and rain. We then had our third and last ascent up Wilmington Hill from the top of which we were able to enjoy an impressive sunset..."

"...then contoured round Folkington Hill and eventually dropped down to civilisation, reaching Polegate Station just minutes before the 6.06 pm train to Lewes. The rail replacement bus from there was quicker than on the outward journey and we soon caught a fast train back to Victoria where we arrived at around 7.50 pm, 11 hours after setting out. The total distance walked was 17 miles and there was also 1700 ft of climbing but one or two members of the party felt fresh enough to contemplate going on another walk the following day!"

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