Essential Info

Distance/time: 6 and a half miles / 3 hours.

Public transport: Train: Wivelsfield train station is at the start and is on the main London to Brighton line. Visit for times.

Buses: has services nos. 40 and 40X which stop virtually at the start.

Car: Street parking nearby.

Underfoot: A reasonably flatish circular walk with muddy fields where grazed and muddy clay paths in the woods. Not much road walking. Take care near cattle and horses.

Thirsty work: The Cock Inn, Wivelsfield Green. The Watermill pub near Wivelsfield station.

Maps: OS Explorer 122.

1. From Wivelsfield train station walk down either set of steps and you will be in Leylands Road. Cross over the road, turn right, go to the mini roundabout and turn left down Valebridge Road.

Cross over so you are on the right side of this road. After 200 yards turn right along a footpath between houses, where at Charlwood Gardens you will reach the unmarked county boundary with East Sussex being to your left and West Sussex on your right.

Follow the path between gardens until you emerge into a field through a squeeze stile, aim for the far left corner, then in the next field keep left and left again in the next heading for a house and barns.

At the gate, pass through the stile and head down the tarmac road and at the iron gates to Great Ote Hall on your left look for the fingerpost ahead, go through the gate and take a path half right to a gap in the fence in the far right hand corner.

Aim straight to the woodland ahead and take a gate in the far right hand corner. Then keep to the left in the next field with a wood on your left. Pass through another gate, again keep left. Near the end of this field take the footbridge to your right. Continue and emerge on a tarmac road with Bethal Baptist Chapel on your right, a Nonconformist chapel set up by worshippers in the 1760s. Follow this road to the B2112.

2. Cross over, and continue down a narrow enclosed footpath to the right of Helks Barn. When you reach the woodland by the garage turn left, and make your way passing over 2 wooden platforms, then as the path bears right to a T-junction turn left. This is the edge of modern Wivelsfield.

Continue on the concrete road, ignore a sign to your right, a further 2 to your left and after a track to your right take a footpath to your right over a footbridge. Follow the left field boundary and enter woods. Take care navigating here.

In 50 yards, turn left at a fingerpost and over a footbridge. In 70 yards turn right at a fingerstump, and in 50 yards at another fingerstump do not turn left but continue uphill leftish. Cross another path and try to keep straight looking for another 2 fingerstumps to mark the way and you should emerge onto the road, opposite Cold Harbour Nursery. Turn right. After 200 yards turn left along a bridleway passing large greenhouses and into Lashmar Wood.

As you come out admire the fields to your right now divided into house paddocks, which a few hundred years ago were managed by Downland parishes such as Ditchling and Stanmer in order that their populations had access to the Weald. Continue to the farm, through a gate, into Mercers Wood and onto a road.

3. Turn left and after 20 yards turn right along a bridleway which after bending left forms an old droveway, much narrowed. Notice the ditches either side which used to form parish boundaries.

At a 4-way fingerpost turn left over a footbridge into a field and on your right is the tower of the Church of Latter Day Saints. Follow this to the back of houses and enter Downsview Drive. Turn right to reach North Common Road, turn left and you will see The Cock Inn pub on the right. This is Wivelsfield Green.

Pass the pub to find a road T-junction and take a tall gate on the right at the Travis Perkins timber supplies building. Take care to follow the yellow marking on the ground and go through a gate to enter the right side of a field and follow the right edge upwards. At the brow of the hill move into the field on your right going downhill with the hedge on your left.

Go over a double gated footbridge, aim for the left edge of the opposite hedgerow and then onto a stile to the left of the telegraph poles. Walk left towards the white stone gateposts of White House, the tops of which can be seen in the distance. At the gate turn left to the road.

4. Cross over, take the footpath opposite and aim for another gate in the far left corner of the garden area. Walk leftish to the field boundary to cross through it and into the field on the left, now keeping the fence on your close right. Beware of cattle in this area.

You will reach a concrete track for about 30 yards and then continue straight over the field to reach Ditchling Road (B2112) and cross over. Cross the field and turn right at the gate aiming for a hidden stile in the far left corner which skirts the church and graveyard to meet a road and turn left. This is Old Wivelsfield.

5. At the iron gates of Lunces Hall bear rightish following a left field edge and downhill to enter a wooded section with a large footbridge.

Emerge into a field and walk upwards through that and the next to follow a hedge on your right near the top, leading to a gate in the far right which takes you to Theobalds Road. Walk left downhill.

This, eventually, leads to Valebridge Road. Turn left. Continue to the same mini roundabout near the start, and turn right to reach the station again.