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Lewes, Glyndebourne and Barcombe Mills (38071)

Event Overview

This is a Sunday walk which starts with a bit of tourism in Lewes, then a reasonably brisk riverside stroll along the River Ouse, a visit to a nice country church, lunch on a disused railway line and an isolated pub to follow. A bit more river, more bumpy countryside, two windmills and right near the end, a gentle climb to look back to where we have been and ahead to the town below and its pubs. All rather good.

This is a walk intended to take advantage of the lovely setting of the River Ouse to the North of Lewes. On this walk, we shall have a look at Lewes Castle on our way out through the town and then follow the Sussex Ouse Valley Way through the picturesque hamlet of Hamsey and on towards Barcombe, where we will detour to look at the church and adjacent buildings. Eventually we will find our way onto the trackbed of the former Uckfield to Lewes railway line where we will hopefully have a bit of lunch. After that to the Anchor Inn, an incredibly popular and difficult to access riverside pub. Unfortunately we will not have time to make use of their boat hire facilities.

From the pub we will follow the river down to Barcombe Mills which is a mix of the river and weirs which are attractive and are connected with the adjacent Barcombe Reservoir.

Leaving the river valley, the countryside becomes slightly more undulating as the paths head over the A26 Lewes to Uckfield road and lead us to and through the fairly unattractive village of Ringmer. Ahead of us for most of this part of the walk is the wind turbine which serves Glyndebourne opera house, providing most of its electricity. It was erected on the same hill which was previously occupied by a post windmill, the remains of which can still be seen. We will pass by these symbols of historic and present technology.

The final part of the walk is a gradual climb up to Mount Caburn, the solitary chunk of Downland which looms over Lewes. The last steep downhill walk takes us into Cliffe High Street and a choice of pubs for thirsty travellers.


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What to bring

For Autumn in the countryside you will need proper walking boots and be prepared for all weathers.

For your comfort and safety please be prepared for the anticipated weather and the terrain of the walk - keep in mind the following:

Boots:  Hiking boots  that  are both waterproof and breathable, and provide good ankle support, are important as soon as you encounter any mud. Cross trainers may suffice in good weather and flat routes.

Socks:  Proper walking socks keep your feet dry, and help prevent blisters.

Walking Trousers:  (ideally water resistant) will be more comfortable than Jeans which are heavy and cold when wet.  From April to October shorts are usually a better bet.

Waterproof Over-Trousers:  essential in any significant rainfall.  Breathable ones are best.

Layered clothing: allows you to quickly adapt to changes in the weather as well as body temperature. E.g. a base layer or a cotton T-Shirt; a mid layer like a micro fleece, or a rugby type thick shirt,  and in cooler weather an outer layer consisting of a windproof jacket or a thick fleece. 

Waterproof Jacket: essential when hiking in all but the calmest of weather.  You get what you pay for with these. Breathable fabrics are advisable.

Hat: essential both in mid winter to preserve heat and in summer to prevent sunburn and heatstroke. 

Gloves: essential in frosty weather.

Small Rucksack: One that is comfortable to wear is essential so that you can use your arms freely. Place valuables in water proof bags inside.

Sunglassses: April- Sept: comfortable sunglasses enhance your pleasure and keep insects out of the eye

Water: even in winter one can loose a litre or more of fluid by perspiration. If you fail to make this up you'll get dehydrated which can lead to headaches and other problems. A hydration bladder is easier to use than bottled water, but higher maintenance.

Food: a packed lunch will be required unless otherwise stated. In addition carry energy bars or similar to counter 'sugar lows'.

Medicines: If you have allergies, are diabetic, or have minor ailments don't forget these!

Food & Drink

Please bring a packed lunch with you, plenty to drink despite the time of the year and money for the pubs. There are shops Lewes on the way out and in Ringmer on the way back.

Meeting & Times

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Is this your first ever event?

The idea of meeting up with a group of complete strangers to be taken for a long walk on an unknown route through unfamiliar countryside can be daunting for some, but hopefully the following helpful guideline will set your mind at rest:

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