Burgess Hill to Hassocks:
We leave Burgess Hill by means of a quiet residential road (the sort where people learn to drive on a Sunday morning, so we can remind them about the new Highway Code) and then a very nice bridleway. At Hope Farm, we once again encounter the East Adur, but as a much younger river, only a few hundred metres from its source. Then a nice wooded path across DitchlingCommon (those who prefer hard surfaces can bypass this bit) and then we ride eastwards, on tarmac, to the Plough, between Chailey and Plumpton Green, for lunch. (It’s an old Clarion haunt: the pub with the memorial to the Polish airmen).
We then grapple with the strange geography of Sussex: East Chiltington is some 17 miles east of West Chiltington, but a mile west of Chiltington …. Anyway we’ll only be visiting the East bit on this ride, followed by Streat and Ditchling (more off-road, but good surfaces; at least two churches). On the way, we can get a glimpse of Chailey windmill (open to the public on Sunday afternoons – possible future ride?)
There are several possibilities for a late tea stop in Ditchling or Hassocks before boarding the train home, including the coffee-cum-bike shop (though it may not be open).
Contact me (email@example.com) if you are interested as I may have to book the pub. The pub has a large garden, and also a covered outside area. Those preferring to bring their own lunch could probably sit outside with the rest of us if the weather allows.
Length: 11.5 miles
Terrain: Mostly quiet lanes and bridleways. Some avoidable mud. No hills!
Starts at Burgess Hill station (up side, platform-level exit) at 10:55am.
Train: 10:34 from Brighton to Redhill.
Getting back: trains from Hassocks to Brighton at 15 and 35 minutes past the hour.
Do not wait on Brighton station concourse – get straight on the train and head for the bike storage carriage at the front.