Country Walks: Walks in the Weald
Guided walks, country hikes and off track exploring are all on the bill this Season. As the weather starts to break and the conditions are a little more tolerable and joyful outside it’s the perfect time to get out in the great outdoors, take in the scenic beauty of our areas with some of the best walking routes and landscapes in the country it truly is wonderful to walk.
Nearly two-thirds of Wealden is protected landscape with Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, ancient woodland, heathland, wetlands and wildlife habitats. The beautiful Ashdown Forest and the South Downs National Park, are both part of this wonderful rural area. The High Weald, a large part of which is in Wealden, is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and is one of the best surviving medieval landscapes in Northern Europe. It was the country’s main iron-producing region during the Roman and Tudor periods. So, with all of this right on our doorstep why not take some time to get out and explore the beauty of the Weald
Whether you are looking for a short peaceful walk or a challenging hike that would even test the lungs of Jennifer Pharr Davis, the Wealden has a route for all. The Wealden council are specifically promoting 20 walks ranging from four miles to 12 miles in distance and all are aimed towards giving a better understanding the areas natural beauty and historic landscapes. The walks encounter woodlands, tracks, paths and across the South Downs National park with many other hidden surprises along the way. All routes are designed to be enjoyed for all ages.
The Wealden Walks collection now includes over 30 different walks. Giving instruction on location, distance and what to expect. Incorporating a range of pubs, restaurants, cafes and other refreshment options along the routes should you wish to make a day of it or just requiring a break from the track. A few of the stand outs include:
The Walk of Mysteries
A 150 year old railway which has never carried a train, a skeleton of our very earliest ancestor – the “missing link” between man and ape – dated to the twentieth century. This walk around Uckfield and Fletching takes in many mysteries.
A Fishy Tale About Cheese
A walk between two attractive Sussex villages through the Low Weald, to recount some of the stories and legends which abound in this area, although some of these may be truer than others.
The Butcher, The Baker and The Clothing Maker
In 1260, the Diocese of Chichester made a survey of its huge estates across Sussex. By good fortune, this dating (and the document’s survival) are perfect material to illustrate the evolution of the woodland pasture of Heathfield through a series of individual clearings in a forest into a small settlement in its own right around a new church. We can meet individual villagers and follow in their footsteps around their expanding settlement.