Lewes to Haywards Heath via Hamsey, Barcombe, Piltdown, Fletching and Lindfield
The last time we saw the Ouse was on 22 January, between Seaford and Lewes where it would have been a wide, shallow estuary before human intervention deepened and narrowed the channel for navigation purposes. On this ride we will continue upstream and see it gradually getting smaller, although even when we leave it at the end of the ride – at East Mascalls Bridge near Lindfield – it is still a substantial river. We will cross the Ouse a total of six times (the first two in Lewes); on the way there will once more be some little nuggets of local history culled from V.M. Taylor’s River Valley Odyssey. Lunch is booked at the Rose and Crown in Fletching, which I am sure we have been to before, but I’m not sure when.
Start time: 10.30 am, Lewes Station, car park on platform 1 side.
Length: about 24 miles.
Duration: about 5 hours.
Terrain: The path to Offham can be muddy; if it is we can use the road. Otherwise we will be on hard surfaces.
Hills: Now let’s see … rivers run in valleys, don’t they? And you tend to cross them at right angles, right? So … yes, there will be undulations; but we never go above 70 metres above sea level so there are no big climbs, and there were none that forced me to get off and push on the practice.
Getting there: 10.09 from Brighton, 8.47 from London Victoria (NB: I believe the excellent Lewes station café is now open on Sundays!)
Getting back: There are plenty of trains in both directions from Haywards Heath.