The Next Ride: Sunday 7th January 2018 – Cooden Beach to Catsfield and back

This is a repeat of a ride we did in August 2015. We’ll set off from Cooden Beach station, and after skirting the Bexhill suburbs of Cooden and Little Common, we reach the delightful Peartree Lane, which very soon delivers us to High Woods. We lingered here (in the rain!) last time but the paths don’t really take us anywhere much so we’ll probably just nod in its direction this time.

We cross the A269 at Lunsford’s Cross, and then Potman’s Lane brings the only seriously steep hill, which is about 1 in 15 but is soon over.

Lunch will be at the White Hart at Catsfield, at 12:00, a pleasant little pub which was judged “spacious and warm” last time, and the food “good and reasonably priced”.

St Laurence’s Church (12th century) may once again tempt us in. This time, however, I will make sure we are all together before making the decision to stop there, to ensure that we don’t lose anyone!

On the way back we go through Henley’s Down, and then there is a possible off-road detour which is a little bumpy but at least gets us away from traffic. We can discuss whether to take it or not on the day; if this proves to be a “cat-herding” exercise, we can split up and then reconvene in Sidley.

Sidley is on the outskirts of Bexhill, so at this point we turn west and regain Peartree Lane and our outward route.

We return to Cooden Beach station after a total of only 14 miles; once again, if any of us want to go further, it will be possible to cycle back to Pevensey and Westham station, 6 miles further on (but not to Norman’s Bay, as trains don’t stop there on Sundays). The sun sets at 9 miutes past 4 and we should get to Cooden well before that. But bring lights – just in case!

Practicalities:

Start at Cooden Beach station at 10:40. There are bike-friendly ramps to road level.

Distance: 14 or 20 miles

Terrain: Mostly quiet roads, some off-road possible. Some undulations.

Getting there: There are no direct trains from Brighton to Cooden on Sundays. I recommend getting the Ashford train from Brighton at 9:12 and changing at Eastbourne onto the 10:21 Ore train (this gives us half an hour for the change, and even a possibility of coffee).

Getting back: Trains leave Cooden Beach at 38 minutes past the hour, and Pevensey & Westham at 44 minutes past, changing at Eastbourne again.

Jim.

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