Eastbourne lies at the foot of the South Downs eastern end. John Harmer starts from the town, passing through parkland and golf courses, rising to use part of the South Downs Way, with extensive views, before returning through the delightful Old Town.

1. From the Station, cross Terminus Road and turn right, then left into Grove Road. Cross in front of the Library to go along Southfields Road to the end, bearing left into The Goffs; then, in a short distance, turn left at the entrance to Gildredge Park.

From Gildredge Park car park, head into the parkland along the path straight ahead. There are toilets on the right, which it is advisable to use, as there are no other facilities until near the end of the walk.

Leave the Park on the farther side and go along an access road. At the T-junction, cross over and turn left alongside a flintstone wall.

2. At the next junction, cross Paradise Drive to a footpath opposite, marked a plinth at ground level. Go up the steps, through a narrow woodland strip and onto the golf course. See the warning notice regarding using the footpath.

Bear right uphill to the first marker post, ahead to the second post, then downhill to the third and fourth. Go uphill between trees to the next post and towards a house at the top of the hill to the last one.

Exit the golf course through an iron kissing-gate and along the road ahead. At the junction, turn right along Carlisle Road for nearly half a mile, crossing the ends of Paradise Drive, Link Road, Upper Carlisle Road and Salisbury Road.

3. On approaching a T-junction, turn right along a grass path running parallel with, but at a little distance from, the road for about 350 yards. Where the path comes near to the road, cross to a fingerpost opposite and follow the bridleway uphill.

Cross the next road and go forward to a waymark post. Continue on the left-hand path marked Jubilee Way, uphill, veering around to the left as it follows the edge of a steep wooded escarpment.

As the path levels there is a good view across the town and beyond. Now look for a waymark post on the right and turn sharp right here to join a bridleway section of the South Downs Way (SDW).

At the eastern end of this national trail, which runs from Winchester to Eastbourne for 100 miles, there are various routes. Look for the acorn sign on waymarks and fingerposts along the way.

On coming to a crossway of bridleways at a fingerpost, continue direction (north-west) on a wide grass track with more views across the town. Approaching a main road, bear right at a fingerpost with a CAUTION TRAFFIC AHEAD sign attached, to cross the road between wooden posts.

4. Continue direction (north-west, veering around to north) until coming to a dew pond with seats around for a welcome rest, if desired. Nearby is a trig point; one of many such pillars constructed by Ordnance Survey in the first half of the 20th century to aid with surveying.

Follow the path to the left for a further 550 yards, keeping to the upper (left-hand) path. Cross the Eastbourne to East Dean road (A259) with great care and follow the SDW, as indicated by a fingerpost, going along a stony track with a golf course on either side.

Pass a plinth on the left from where there is a good view through Ringwood Bottom to the downland village of East Dean. Continue direction uphill, then down, with fields on the left and scrub on the right.

5. At the next dip in the landscape, turn right immediately past another dew pond. Follow the grass track going steeply downhill, taking extra care as it will be slippery, if wet.

In about 400 yards, where a footpath crosses, turn right and follow the contour into a wood. The path then rises into an opening across to and through another wood.

Bear right to follow the main track downhill and, after it levels, turn left opposite a wooden post (no waymark) into a twitten between board fences. Cross the estate road ahead, going downhill and, in a few paces, bear right into Sancroft Road for about 250 yards.

Turn left by number 25 into a twitten between brick walls, leading into Old Town Recreation Ground where there are seats, if a rest is desired. Follow the path straight ahead, with toilets on the left, to the exit just beyond and turn left to the crossroads.

6. Turn right and then veer left as the road rises to meet the main road (A259 again). Turn left along the footway into the Old Town, passing The Tally-Ho.

A little farther on is the impressive ancient parish church, dating from 1160 but extensively restored in the 19th century. There are numerous wall plaques inside; so take a look, if interested.

Continue past The Lamb to cross the main road at the traffic lights, and go up steps directly ahead. On entering Manor Gardens, turn left along the paved path and turn right at the end, continuing to the end of this path.

Turn left and, at the end, go around to the left of the seat, following the path on the left of the Bowling Green alongside Gildredge Park. Go through the car park on the left and turn left for the bus stops in The Goffs, or right to return to the rail station.