Main Walk: 18 km (11.2 miles). Four hours 20 minutes walking time. For the whole excursion including trains, sights and meals, allow at least 8 hours 30 minutes.
Short Walk, to South Godstone: 15 km (9.3 miles). Three hours 35 minutes walking time.
Alternative Walk, to Edenbridge: 15½ km (9.6 miles). Three hours 40 minutes walking time.
Explorers 146 & 147. Oxted, map reference TQ393529, is in Surrey, 15 km SE of Croydon.
3 out of 10.
The start of this walk borrows from Book 2 Walk 16a (Hurst Green to Oxted) for the two alternative routes up and over the Greensand Hills to Tenchleys Manor. It then heads south to Staffhurst Wood, a Local Nature Reserve and Site of Special Scientific Interest managed by the Surrey Wildlife Trust. Many of the trees in this ancient woodland were felled in the 1930s and it was further damaged in World War II when it was used as an ammunition dump. It has now been re-established as a traditional ‘coppice with standards’ wood: hazel and hornbeam cut every few years under large oak, ash and beech trees allowed to grow to their full size. It has a fine display of bluebells in spring and many varieties of fungi in autumn.
The afternoon section is mostly across low-lying farmland but there are also a number of low hills with surprisingly good views. The walk crosses the River Eden and comes to the small settlement of Crowhurst, whose churchyard contains a magnificent old yew tree, comparable with the one in nearby Tandridge. There are some attractive old farmsteads and manor houses in this rural area and you get a peep at one of the best preserved, Crowhurst Place.
The final section is across a flat plain and through Lingfield Nature Reserve into the town. The conservation area around its grand parish church contains many well-preserved buildings from the 16th-18thC. By the village pond there is another ancient tree (the Lingfield Oak) and a cage which was still being used to imprison miscreants in the late 19thC. Although Lingfield Park Racecourse is not on the walk route, the town (and trains) will be busier on race days and you might want to consider one of the alternative walk endings, described below.
You can shorten the Main Walk (or any of the options below) by 1½ km by starting from Hurst Green, the next station after Oxted. This is worth considering if you miss a train and would have to start 20-30 minutes behind the main group.
The triangle of railway lines surrounding Staffhurst Wood means that several alternative endings are feasible. Directions are included for a Short Walk heading west from Crowhurst to South Godstone (although this is not a great place to end a walk), and an Alternative Walk heading south-east fom the lunch pub to Edenbridge.
Few buses venture down the lanes around Staffhurst Wood and you would almost certainly need to call a taxi if you wanted to abandon the walk altogether.
This walk originally included a route back to Oxted, but this has been transferred to Extra Walk 277 (Godstone to Oxted) and extended to create a walk which goes past both of Surrey's ancient yew trees. These two walks share the same lunch pub and so several more options (including a Circular Walk back to Oxted or Hurst Green) can be created by switching to one of that walk's afternoon variations.
There is a half-hourly service from Victoria to Oxted, Hurst Green and Lingfield on the East Grinstead line, taking 37 minutes to Oxted. There is also an hourly service from London Bridge to Oxted, Hurst Green and Edenbridge Town on the Uckfield line (Mon–Sat; changing at East Croydon and/or Oxted on Sundays).
The station at South Godstone (called Godstone but 4 km south of that village) is on the Redhill–Tonbridge line, with an hourly service from Victoria (London Bridge on Sundays); in the evenings you might have to change at Redhill. There is also a station called Edenbridge on this line, but at the end of the Alternative Walk it is usually more convenient to return from Edenbridge Town.
Buy a return to Lingfield for the Main Walk and a return to Edenbridge Stations via East Croydon for the other options (although in practice a Lingfield ticket might be accepted).
If driving, it is best to park at Oxted (and not finish at Godstone). Oxted station car park is free after 10am, but you are unlikely to find a space during the week. Hurst Green and Lingfield station car parks both cost £5.50 Mon–Sat, £2 Sun & BH (2016).
Take the train nearest to 10:00 from London Bridge (or Victoria) to Oxted, or 10:30 if starting from Hurst Green.
On all the walk options the only conveniently-placed pub for a lunchtime stop is the Royal Oak (01883-722207) on the edge of Staffhurst Wood, 8¾ km from Oxted (7¼ km from Hurst Green). A “Grumpy Mole Restaurant” since November 2016, this up-market country inn has a beer garden with fine views across the Low Weald. It serves a good range of locally sourced and freshly-cooked food to 3pm, from à la carte meals to bar snacks.
If you do the full Main Walk through the centre of Lingfield the suggested tea place is Joyce's with Best Wishes (01342-832428) at 30-32 High Street, an excellent tearoom with a pretty patio garden; it is open to 5.30pm Mon–Sat, 5pm Sun (Apr–Oct & Dec only). A nearby alternative is the Red Rum Caffé (01342-459752). For stronger fare there are two pubs close to the village pond, the Old Cage (01342-834271) and the Greyhound (01342-832147), but the most conveniently placed pub (also passed on the direct route to the station) is The Star (01342-832364), just outside the Old Town.
On the Short Walk to South Godstone the Lagham pub and Indian restaurant (01342-892104) is conveniently situated across the main road from Godstone station.
On the Alternative Walk the suggested tea place on Edenbridge High Street is The Minstrel coffee shop at #86 (01732-863100), which is open to 4pm Tue–Sat (but only 3pm Mon and closed Sun) and serves homemade cakes and scones. There is also a Costa Coffee at #64 (01732-866883), open to 6pm Mon–Sat, 5pm Sun. Pubs include Ye Old Crown Inn (01732-867896) and the King & Queen (01732-862139).
If you are doing one of the shorter variations as an afternoon walk, the Royal Oak (see Lunch above) serves a full afternoon tea from 3-5pm Mon–Sat.
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Out: (not a train station)
Back: (not a train station)
National Rail: 03457 48 49 50 • Travelline SE (bus times): 0871 200 2233 (12p/min) • TFL (London) : 0343 222 1234
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The directions for this walk are also in a PDF (link above) which you can download on to a Kindle, tablet, or smartphone.
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Walk Options ( Main | Short | Alternative )
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- Main Walk (18 km)
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If you travel to Hurst Green station, start at §3.
- Oxted Station to Limpsfield Common (1½ km)
- Limpsfield Common to Pains Hill (1¾ km)
- Hurst Green Station to Pains Hill (1¾ km)
- Pains Hill to Grants Lane (3 km)
- Grants Lane to the Royal Oak (2½ km)
- The Royal Oak to Crowhurst Church (2¾ km)
- Crowhurst Church to Moat Farm (2¾ km)
- Moat Farm to Lingfield Nature Reserve (1¾ km)
- Lingfield Nature Reserve to the Station (2 or 1¼ km)
- Main route (2 km)
- Direct route (1¼ km)
- Crowhurst Church to Godstone Station (3½ km)
- The Royal Oak to Grants Lane (1¼ km)
- Grants Lane to Edenbridge Golf Course (1½ km)
- Across Edenbridge Golf Course (1 km)
- The Golf Course to Edenbridge High Street (2 km)
- The High Street to Edenbridge Town Station (1 km)
Go down Station Road East and turn right into Johnsdale. Veer left past a green to come out onto the A22. Cross over and go up a bridleway (Old Lane) parallel to the railway. Continue in the same direction on Rockfield Road and turn left onto the Greensand Way (GW) to enter Limpsfield Common.
This section is the same as the ending of Book 2 Walk 16a (in reverse).
Arriving from London, go down steps from Platform 2. Turn right to go through a small car parking area and bear right into Station Road East. In 275m, at the end of the shops, turn right into Johnsdale. Where this splits in front of a small green, fork left. At the end of the road keep left and go down an alley to the A25.
Cross this busy main road with great care and take the bridleway opposite, to the left of a driveway. This old sunken lane climbs steadily and when you get to see the railway line on your right entering a tunnel, you are some way above it. 200m after crossing over a driveway the track comes out onto Rockfield Road and you continue along it in the same direction.
In 100m turn left opposite a minor road (Icehouse Wood) into the left-hand of two driveways, signposted as a bridleway and briefly joining the Greensand Way1 (GW). After passing a house this comes out onto West Heath (part of Limpsfield Common), with the GW continuing along the leftmost of several paths ahead.
Head east across Limpsfield Common, at first on a permissive path parallel to the GW, then rejoining it by the former St Michael's school. Follow the GW across Wolf's Road and New Road to Brick Kiln Lane, then across Chapel Road to Pastens Road.
This section differs slightly from the Book 2 route, taking a permissive bridleway close to the Greensand Way until the two routes rejoin. If you prefer you could simply follow the GW all the way to Pastens Road.
Leave the GW by taking the wide path to its right, curving gently to the right alongside some trees with open heathland on the right. In about 150m fork left and continue in this direction through the common to reach a small clearing. Bear left to walk parallel to a lane (the route of the GW) off to the left. Keep ahead onto a permissive bridleway and follow this for 400m through the woods, parallel to the lane and heading NE.
Eventually the path veers left and meets the lane in front of a large redbrick building, the former St Michael's school (now private apartments). Turn right onto the lane, which soon veers right and meets Wolf's Road. Cross this road carefully and continue on the bridleway opposite, heading E. In 200m this bends right towards another road (New Road). Cross over and go gently downhill on the continuation of the bridleway, now heading SE.
Follow this track through the wooded common for 500m, ignoring ways off; after going through a dip it climbs gently and eventually comes out onto a private road (Stoneswood Road) at its junction with Brick Kiln Lane. Go straight across Stoneswood Road and bear right to head S on Brick Kiln Lane. In 100m, just after a driveway on the left, bear left at a GW marker onto a path which leads to a golf tee.
The right of way continues straight ahead, cutting across the front of the tee and going past the corner of a small wood to come out onto Chapel Road opposite Pains Hill Chapel2, but you could also take a path through the wood and turn left onto the road to reach the chapel. Take the footpath to the left of the chapel, which goes between fences for 200m. At the end turn left onto Pastens Road, joining the route from Hurst Green.
Continue the directions at §4.
Head north-east on Hurstlands for 500m and turn right onto a footpath. Follow it past a school playing field and across Pollards Wood Road. At the top of the hill the footpath leads into a private road. Continue across Pains Hill onto Pastens Road.
This section is the same as the start of Book 2 Walk 16/16a.
Arriving from London, leave the station by an exit near the front of the platform (to the right of a small shelter). Go up a flight of steps to the road bridge over the railway, turn left and follow the main road for 500m as it curves gently round to the left.
Just after passing Home Park, where the road name changes from Hurstlands to Wolf's Hill, turn right onto a tarmac path between fences. Go across a residential road and follow the path to the corner of a playing field, guarded by high green railings. Follow the path around two sides of the field. At the end bear slightly left onto a tree-lined fenced track, climbing gently, which leads to Pollards Wood Road.
Cross this road carefully and continue on the footpath opposite. This goes alongside a large wooded depression and then curves round to the right, uphill. At the top go through a gap in a wooden fence and continue past a large house, along its driveway. This leads into a private road going past more houses to a minor road (Pains Hill).
Cross this road and continue on Pastens Road opposite. In 150m the route from Oxted joins from a footpath on the left.
At the end of Pastens Road keep ahead on a footpath heading south-east to Tenchleys Manor. Continue on a bridleway heading south to Stockenden Farm. Turn left onto a footpath going across the Uckfield railway line to Grants Lane.
Stay on Pastens Road as it turns half-right to head SE, soon with fine views to the right. Where it ends at a junction with a lane, go straight across onto the driveway to “Headland”, signposted as a public footpath. In 40m, shortly before reaching a gate in front of the house, go through a wooden gate on the left and turn right onto a sunken path going downhill between trees.
At the end go over a stile and follow a grassy path down a large field, staying fairly near its right-hand side. In the bottom corner of the field go over a stile and continue on an enclosed path towards the buildings of Tenchleys Manor. Just before the first house turn right as indicated onto a fenced path going around two sides of a small field to reach a driveway, where there is a good view of the picturesque Tenchleys Manor3 on the left.
Turn right onto the driveway and follow it out to a lane (Itchingwood Common Road). Go straight across this onto a path between wooden barriers and follow this bridleway around the edge of a meadow. In 150m the path bends left and crosses a footbridge over a stream. Continue along the right-hand edge of some large fields for 450m, heading S. The path then crosses a ford and later bends right to come to a house at Stockenden Farm.
With the house on your right, turn left through a metal kissing gate. Go past a pond on your right and continue along the right-hand side of a large field. In the next corner there are two metal kissing gates; go through the right-hand gate and veer left onto a path near the edge of a wood. Go over a stile, up a flight of steps and across the Uckfield railway line.
On the other side go uphill across the corner of a field, slightly away from the left-hand side. At the top go over a stile in the fence and bear right to go diagonally across a series of paddocks, with stiles in the fences separating them, to reach a minor road (Grants Lane).
Head west on a footpath into the northern tip of Staffhurst Wood and turn left onto a broad path heading south through it. In 800m go across Staffhurst Wood Road and take the left-hand of two paths opposite, which goes along the northern side of an assart (clearing). Turn right at a crosspaths to go along its eastern side, then bear right in front of a larger assart, joining a public footpath. Follow this as it turns left and then swings right to head west through the wood to Dwelly Lane. Continue on this footpath across fields to the Royal Oak pub on Caterfield Lane.
Cross Grants Lane and make your way over an awkward stile onto the signposted footpath opposite, heading W across a large field. On the far side go over a stile into Staffhurst Wood and up to a path crossing in 50m. Ignore a stile ahead into a field (the continuation of the public footpath) and turn left onto a broad path heading S.
The suggested route is not the shortest way through this attractive wood to the lunch pub. If you have a good sense of direction there are several places where you could bear right off the main path to head for St Silvan's car park and church, from where the route of the Alternative Walk (in reverse) would take you across Dwelly Lane and Caterfield Lane onto a path through Great Earl's Wood to the Royal Oak.
For the suggested route simply follow the main path through the wood for 800m, eventually coming to a minor road (Staffhurst Wood Road) running through the centre of the wood. Do not take the continuation of the broad path opposite, but take a less obvious path 20m to its left. This soon veers left in front of an assart (woodland clearing) and runs alongside it.
Immediately after passing the corner of the assart turn right at a path junction onto a broad path, staying alongside the clearing and heading S. Keep ahead at the next two path crossings (with a fieldgate into the assart at the first one). After the second crossing the path bends right in front of a larger assart, then merges with another path from the left.
At the corner of this large assart turn left in front of a pond to cross over its outlet, then in 25m fork right uphill, as indicated by a yellow waymarker on a post. Follow this path as it heads W through the wood for 250m to come out onto a road (Dwelly Lane) opposite a cottage.
Cross the road carefully (slightly to the right) to continue on the signposted footpath opposite. This bends right to go through a strip of woodland parallel to the road for a short distance, then turns left onto a fenced path between paddocks and a field. At the end go over a stile and turn half-right to cross a field towards a stile in the hedge on the far side, 175m away.
Go over this stile and down the right-hand side of the next field, directly towards the lunchtime pub. Unless the owners have provided a new back gate into its beer garden you will have to follow the field edge round to the left; just before reaching Caterfield Lane you can go up a bank and cut through its small car park to the Royal Oak pub.
If you are doing the Alternative Walk to Edenbridge, go to §11.
Take the footpath heading west past Sunt Farm and across the East Grinstead railway line to Foyle Farm. Turn left onto the footpath heading south-west alongside a strip of woodland, across the River Eden and the Redhill–Tonbridge railway line to Crowhurst Lane. Keep ahead on the road and turn right into the churchyard of St George's, Crowhurst, with its famous yew tree.
Turn left out of the pub and go down Caterfield Lane for 75m (or retrace your steps through the car park). Just past the footpath where you arrived, cross the road carefully and take the farm lane opposite, signposted as a public footpath and heading W. Follow this past farm buildings, including the imposing Sunt Barn on your left.
At the end of the farm keep ahead across a field towards the East Grinstead railway line. Cross the tracks and continue in the same direction up the right-hand side of a large field, initially with a wood on your right and then a hedge as you descend. Go over a stile next to a fieldgate onto a junction of tracks in front of the buildings of Foyle Farm.
Take the first track on the left, alongside a hedge. After passing a large barn, keep left to continue for 500m on a track between a hedge and a strip of woodland, eventually heading S. Go over a stile beside a metal fieldgate into a meadow and continue in roughly the same direction across some ditches and then the River Eden4 itself on a wide footbridge. On the far side bear right along a field edge and continue past a fieldgate into the corner of a large field.
Go up the right-hand side of this field, alongside a row of trees and parallel to the East Grinstead railway line off to the left. In 250m, about 50m before reaching the Redhill–Tonbridge line ahead, go over a stile on the right and through a small plantation into the corner of a field. Continue alongside the railway line for a short distance and then turn left at a crossing point to go over the tracks.
On the other side make for a wide gap in the hedge 100m ahead (the right of way cuts across the field but if there is no clear path it is not much further around the edge). At the gap turn right to head W along the left-hand edge of another field. In 200m follow a grassy track round to the left and past a house. Go out along its driveway and continue along a minor road (Crowhurst Lane) in the same direction, taking care as there is no pavement.
In 250m, opposite the 16thC Mansion House, bear right up a short flight of steps and go through a lychgate into a churchyard. The Crowhurst Yew5 is on the right in front of St George's church6, which is worth visiting.
If you are doing the Short Walk to South Godstone, go to §10.
Leave the churchyard on the footpath heading west and immediately turn left to head south past Little Haydon Farm to Crowhurst Place. Continue on the footpath heading alternately south and west to Moat Farm.
Go past the church and leave the churchyard through a wooden gate into the top corner of a field. Make your way down to a gap in the hedge at the bottom of the field, 50m out from the near corner (strictly speaking the right of way is to carry on along the top of the field for 125m and turn sharp left at a footpath signpost). Go through the gap into the next field and continue in the same direction as if you had taken the longer route. On the far side go over a stile and along a fenced path to a farm driveway.
Cross the drive and go over another stile. Turn half-right and make your way across two fields to a line of trees on the far side. Go through a metal gate, across a footbridge and turn right, heading SW. Another stile then takes you onto a grassy path at the edge of a plantation of young trees, with a tree-lined stream on your right.
In 300m, where another path comes in from a footbridge over the stream, turn left. In 50m follow the path as it curves right to go up the left-hand edge of a large field. Crowhurst Place7 is up ahead on your right, partly hidden by a tall hedge. In 400m go through a wooden kissing gate and across the manor house's private drive.
Continue to head S on the footpath, at first across a patch of grass and then through a group of trees. At the end of the trees follow the path round to the right. 100m later, where the way ahead is blocked by a fieldgate, veer left and right to continue along the top edge of a large field, with a wire fence and hedge on your right and fine views on your left towards Lingfield and (on the hill beyond) East Grinstead.
Continue into a second field, then in 150m turn left by a wooden bench and footpath marker and follow a grassy path downhill towards a metal fieldgate. Go through this and keep ahead down the right-hand edge of another large field. At the bottom go over a stile and turn right onto a green lane, heading W. In 300m this comes out onto a driveway, where you turn left; behind the trees on your right is a large body of water at the aptly-named Moat Farm8.
Turn left briefly onto the house's driveway, then double back on a footpath heading south-east across fields to Sugham Farm. Keep left past the farm to come out onto Lingfield Common Road. Continue in the same direction on footpaths and enter Lingfield Nature Reserve at Coldharbour Farm.
Immediately after Moat Farm's driveway crosses a stream and turns right, go over a stile on the left and across a broad strip of grass to a fence. Turn left again to go alongside the fence (doubling back, so you get to see your previous route away to the left). In 200m you come out into a large field and turn half-right to follow a faint grassy path across the middle of it, heading SE.
On the far side go over a stile in the hedge and bear right to go along the field edge. In 100m veer right through a gap in the hedge and continue in your previous direction on a grassy path leading to a rusty fieldgate, 125m away. Go past this and across a concrete bridge over Ray Brook. Follow a fenced path to a T-junction, turn left and continue on a narrow path around the buildings of Sugham Farm, ignoring gates leading into fields or the farm.
After a short stretch over a boardwalk, with a pond off to the right, keep left onto a green lane. This soon turns sharply right and you continue along it for 250m to Lingfield Common Road. Turn left briefly onto the road, then in 25m turn right into a tree-lined lane, gently uphill. In 200m fork left and follow the lane past houses and round a bend to the right. Go past the entrance to Coldharbour Farm and through a kissing gate into the Lingfield Wildlife Area9, part of the Local Nature Reserve.
For the main route via the town centre keep right in Beacon Field. Go through the Community Orchard and along Vicarage Road to the village pond and High Street, with a choice of refreshment places. Loop back via the Old Town and head east on a footpath going between fields to the station. For a short cut bypassing the town centre, keep left in Beacon Field and go across Jenner's Field directly to the Old Town.
Immediately after entering the reserve bear right off the main path onto a grassy path towards a group of trees, Coldharbour Copse. As you go through the trees and come out into Beacon Field the path forks and there is a choice of routes to complete the walk.
The shorter route in §9b bypasses the town centre (with its choice of pubs and tearooms) but does pass one pub if you want to break for refreshment.
For the main route fork right and follow a path along the right-hand edge of Beacon Field, heading SSW. In the corner of the field follow the path briefly round to the left, then near the old fire beacon turn right onto a surfaced path which goes through a small Wildflower Meadow into the Community Orchard. For the most direct route, follow the path round to the left. On the far side of the orchard take a track out of the Nature Reserve to a residential street (Vicarage Road) at a bend.
Turn right and go along this road for 300m to its junction with the B2028, where there are a couple of pubs off to the right, the Old Cage and the Greyhound. Turning left onto the B2028 will bring you to the (real) Old Cage10 and the 400-year old Lingfield Oak, on the southern side of the village pond. For the other tea places continue past the pond (on either side) to the High Street, where the Red Rum Caffé and Joyce's with Best Wishes (the suggested tearoom) are in the parade of shops on the right.
The suggested route to the station (1 km away) is not quite the shortest, but takes you past the attractive church and Old Town. Head E along the High Street for a further 100m and then turn left into Old School Place. Where this turns left after 50m, keep ahead on an alleyway which leads into the churchyard of Ss Peter and Paul11, a surprisingly grand parish church which is well worth visiting; its entrance is through the west door in the tower.
For the shorter route fork left and follow a path along the left-hand edge of Beacon Field, heading SSE. On the far side of the field go through a gap in the hedge and keep ahead across Jenner's Field, eventually passing to the left of a children's playground in the far corner.
Go through a wooden kissing gate onto a junction of tarmac paths and take one heading in much the same direction (still SSE). At the end go down steps, across Vicarage Road and up another tarmac path into Lingfield's Old Town. After passing the attractive Guest House (now a library) a short flight of steps takes you into the churchyard of Ss Peter and Paul11. The shortest route is to fork left, but if you want to visit this surprisingly grand parish church its entrance is through the west door in the tower.
If you have been visiting the church turn left out of the west door and then left again onto the path along its south side. Leave the churchyard in its south-east corner and continue along a short street of fine old houses. At the end of this street The Star pub is directly opposite on Church Road; this is the last refreshment stop before the station, 500m away.
To complete the walk take the signposted public footpath on the north side of the pub, which becomes a tree-lined tarmac path heading E between fields. Later it goes alongside the high wall of New Place and comes out onto Station Road. Go straight across this into the approach road to the station. The platform on the near side is for trains to London; if the ticket office is closed, the entrance is on the left.
Leave the churchyard on the footpath heading west and continue along field edges and through Ashen Plantation. At the end of the wood turn right onto the footpath leading to Crowhurst Lane End. Turn left onto Crowhurst Lane and go straight across Tandridge Lane onto the footpath alongside the Redhill–Tonbridge railway line to South Godstone. Go under the railway bridge and turn left for Godstone station.
For the Short Walk go past the church and leave the churchyard through a wooden gate into the top corner of a field. Head W along the top edge of this field and then three more, with good views on the left. At the end of the last field go over a stile onto a broad woodland path through Ashen Plantation, with a wire fence on the right.
At the far end leave the wood via the right-hand of two stiles. Turn three-quarters right and go down across a field. At the bottom go over a wooden footbridge in the hedge and continue on a fenced path to a residential street in Crowhurst Lane End. Turn left and go along the street to a T-junction with Tandridge Lane, with a (closed) pub opposite.
Take the footpath to the right of the pub, heading W and parallel to an embankment on your right carrying the railway line. Now simply continue alongside it for 1½ km, initially between fences and trees and later with open fields on your left. At the end you pass farm buildings off to your left and come out onto the A22. Cross this busy main road with great care to the pavement opposite and go under the railway bridge.
The entrance to Godstone station is ahead on the left, opposite The Lagham pub. To reach the station go to the back of its car park and up a ramp to Platform 2. For trains to London via Redhill, cross the footbridge to Platform 1.
Take the footpath into Great Earl's Wood and turn right onto a permissive path gong back to Caterfield Lane at its junction with Dwelly Lane. Continue briefly along Staffhurst Wood Road and then turn right onto the footpath heading south-east through the southern part of Staffhurst Wood to Grants Lane.
For the Alternative Walk turn right out of the pub. Opposite its main car park take a signposted footpath into Great Earl's Wood, heading N. In 100m keep ahead at a path crossing (by a small wooden bench), then 25m later fork right, leaving the public footpath. Follow this permissive path for 200m as it heads E through a chestnut coppice, going straight ahead at a path crossing halfway along. At the end go past a fieldgate to return to Caterfield Lane.
You have a limited view of the traffic so cross the road with great care and go down the short link road opposite. Go straight across Dwelly Lane to continue along Staffhurst Wood Road (you can detour through the small churchyard of St Silvan12 on your left, but the church itself is usually locked). Near the end of a small car park on your left, turn right through a gap in the hedge into the southern part of Staffhurst Wood.
Follow a broad path through the wood, which soon turns half-left to head SE. Continue in this direction for 200m (ignoring a path branching off to the right along the way) to come to a path crossing with wooden horse barriers, with an assart (woodland clearing) ahead on your left. Bear slightly right to continue on a narrower path, passing the clearing on your left.
In 250m keep ahead at more path crossings (again with wooden barriers) to continue on the broad woodland path, now passing a larger assart on your right and still heading SE. In a further 200m go past a metal vehicle barrier and out onto a minor road (Grants Lane).
Head south along Grants Lane for 300m, then take the footpath on the left heading south-east from Partridge Farm, across the Redhill–Tonbridge railway line to Honeypot Lane. Continue on the left-hand of two footpaths opposite, along field edges beside Kent Brook to Edenbridge Golf Course.
Turn right onto Grants Lane, taking care as there is no pavement. In 250m ignore a signposted footpath on the right opposite Black Robins Farm. In a further 50m turn left off the road onto a farm track, then immediately veer right across a patch of grass to follow the right of way to a metal fieldgate. Go through this and bear slightly left across a field for 100m, towards another metal fieldgate in a gap in the hedge (near where two sets of overhead cables cross).
Go through this gap and bear right to go diagonally across a large field (with no clear path) for 300m, heading SE and gradually approaching the Redhill–Tonbridge railway line on a tree-lined embankment. On the far side of the field go over a stile and up a long flight of steps to cross the tracks, then down the other side.
Bear left across a field to its far left-hand corner and go out onto a minor road (Honeypot Lane), where there are two footpaths on the other side of the road, off to the right. Do not take the more obvious second footpath by a fieldgate 25m away, but go over a plank bridge and a stile in the hedge before then, into the corner of a large field.
The fields from here to the golf course are used for grazing horses and you may have to make your way around (or through) temporary fences to follow the right of way described here.
Go along the left-hand side of this field for 250m, with Kent Brook13 behind the line of trees on your left. Near the far left-hand corner go over an old stile and a ditch into another field and make your way along its left-hand edge, negotiating temporary fences if necessary.
In the next corner turn left onto a potentially muddy track and go through a pair of metal fieldgates into another field. The exit is 150m away behind a clump of trees ahead on your right, but you may have to take a longer route alongside a temporary fence, curving round to the right on the far side. This brings you to a metal gate in the fence where you enter Edenbridge Golf Course.
Follow the waymarked right of way heading south-east across the golf course.
These directions attempt to follow a (partly) waymarked right of way across the golf course, but the route is not easy to find on the ground and has become overgrown in places. If you have an OS map or GPS device you may find it easier – if the players do not object – to use golfers' paths going in roughly the right direction (essentially south-east, but zig-zagging left and right along the way). There are no signs to warn you about flying golf balls so take care when crossing fairways.
Go across the grass to the first marker post and then bear left across a fairway towards another post by a large oak tree. Turn left there as indicated, across some rough grassland at the edge of the fairway. It is tempting to bear right onto a clear grassy path used by golfers but the right of way is to go straight across towards a narrow gap in a group of young trees (confirmed by a concealed marker post).
Follow a straight path through these trees for 100m (crossing a track along the way), eventually emerging onto some more rough grassland. Keep to the right of a grassy mound, staying close to the trees on your right for a further 100m, to come to another marker post with yellow waymarkers pointing left and right.
Turn right at this post onto a narrow path through the trees, heading SE. On the other side keep ahead on a faint grassy path which soon merges with a golfers' path. Keep to the left of a green and follow the path through some scrubland and a belt of young trees to a fairway. Bear slightly left across this fairway, aiming to cross a ditch running across it by the middle of three wooden plank bridges. This should bring you to a gap in the trees on the far side with another marker post.
In the next fairway there is a large pond ahead, guarding a green on the left. Skirt around its right-hand side and go past a smaller pond on the right into a belt of young trees between two fairways. Go through these trees for about 50m to a pair of marker posts (one alongside each fairway) and turn half-right to cut diagonally across the right-hand fairway onto a track leading off it. Almost immediately turn left onto a path crossing this track, as indicated by yellow waymarkers on the trees.
Go up to the driveway to Crouch House Farm. Unless you want to head directly to the station, go across the drive onto the footpath heading south towards Skeynes Park. Turn left to skirt around it and follow the path out to Skeynes Road. Turn left and cut through a housing estate via Ash Close to Crouch House Road. Keep ahead and cross the B2026 to reach Edenbridge High Street.
Follow the path through a belt of trees alongside the fairway. In 50m the path goes around a concrete vehicle barrier and curves right to go gently uphill, alongside a low wire fence. In 150m you come to an unsurfaced driveway and turn left onto it, away from the house.
For a more direct route to the station (bypassing the town centre) you could continue to follow (in reverse) the start of Extra Walk 277a (Edenbridge to Oxted), but the only refreshment place on this route would be the Leisure Centre Café in Stangrove Park.
For the full walk turn right off the drive after 25m, onto a signposted footpath heading S. This enclosed path soon comes out into the corner of a large field, with notices about keeping to the footpath. Follow the grassy path near the right-hand field edge to the next corner and go out to a path T-junction in front of a field, with the buildings of Skeynes Park14 on the far side.
Turn left and follow the fenced path for 500m, initially heading E and then turning right. Later the path curves gradually to the left and finally veers left past the end of a fence into a field. Follow the path alongside some brambles and then across the field towards a belt of trees in front of a housing estate. On the far side go through a gap in these trees and over an old stile onto an enclosed path heading S to a residential street (Skeynes Road).
Turn left onto Skeynes Road and go past Springfield Road to reach a green on the right. Make your way across (or around) it to the far right-hand corner and into a cul-de-sac (Ash Close). At the end continue on a fenced tarmac path leading to Crouch House Road. Keep ahead towards traffic lights 150m away and go straight across the B2026 onto a short link road to reach the town's High Street15.
For the suggested route through the town, turn right onto the High Street and then left into Church Street. Cut through the churchyard and go along residential streets (Churchfield, Greenfield and Grange Close) to Station Approach.
The suggested route takes you past a choice of refreshment places and the parish church. If you want to head directly to one of the town's stations turn left onto the High Street, passing Costa Coffee and in 350m coming to Station Approach. Edenbridge Town station is 250m away at the end of this side road; Edenbridge station (on the Redhill–Tonbridge line) is 1 km further away on the long straight road ahead (Station Road, the B2026).
For the suggested route turn right onto the High Street, passing Ye Old Crown Inn and in 100m coming to the suggested tea place on the right, The Minstrel coffee shop (opposite Church Street and the King & Queen pub).
To complete the walk go along Church Street and bear left through its lychgate to come to the interesting church of Ss Peter and Paul16, which is worth visiting. Continue on a tree-lined tarmac path going diagonally across the churchyard to the north of the church. At the end bear right to continue along its edge, then alongside part of a large cemetery.
Shortly after a tarmac path going off to the right, veer left through a metal kissing gate in the low wall onto a short tarmac path leading into the end of a cul-de-sac (Churchfield). Follow this street out to a T-junction and turn left briefly into Forge Croft, then turn right into Greenfield. At the end of this residential street go through vehicle barriers onto another street (Grange Close).
The station is visible just off to the right but Grange Close turns away from it, so after 100m you have to turn right down a short link road and then right again at the bottom to reach it. The platform on the near side is for trains to London; if the ticket office is closed, the entrance is on the right.
- The Greensand Way follows the course of a sandstone ridge just to the south of the North Downs. It runs for 175 km from Haslemere in Surrey to Hamstreet in Kent.
- Pains Hill Chapel is a small Independent Evangelical Church dating from the early 19thC.
- Tenchleys Manor is a 16thC house with 19thC extensions and alterations.
- The source of the River Eden is in the Titsey estate, 2 km north-east of Oxted on the slopes of the North Downs. A Saxon named Eadhelm built a bridge over the river and the town “Eadhelmsbrigge” (later Edenbridge) gave its name to the river. It flows into the River Medway near Penshurst.
- The Crowhurst Yew has a girth of 10 metres and is one of the oldest yew trees in England. Judging by its measured rate of growth it is at least 1,000 years old; some sources speculate that it is much older. In 1820 it was hollowed out and a cannon ball dating from the Civil War was found inside it, partially overgrown with new wood. There is a yew tree of a similar age in the village of Tandridge, 4 km north of Crowhurst (and another in the village of Crowhurst, East Sussex, a source of confusion in the historical records).
- St George, Crowhurst dates from the 12thC, with later additions and rebuilding. This small parish church is unusual in that it largely escaped the attentions of the 19thC restorers.
- Crowhurst Place is a moated manor house dating from around 1450, with many 17thC alterations. In 1681 the Gainsford family arranged for the construction of a stone causeway to the church “it being before a loathsome durtie way everie stepp”. A new owner restored the house in 1920, adding structures like the dovecote and the mock-Tudor gatehouse visible on the left as you cross the driveway.
- The house at Moat Farm was built in about 1800, replacing an earlier building. Many of the large houses in this area were moated and the body of water which remains gives some idea of its size.
- The Lingfield Wildlife Area was created in 1994 by local residents, transforming two barren fields into a set of varied habitats.
- The Old Cage was built in 1773 to confine local miscreants. The last inmate was a poacher in 1882.
- Ss Peter & Paul, Lingfield mostly dates from the 14thC, although there are traces of a much earlier Saxon church. It contains a fine collection of monuments and brasses to the Cobham family.
- St Silvan, Staffhurst Wood (appropriately named in its remote woodland setting) was built in 1898 as a Mission Room and consecrated as a church in 1930. St Silvan was a 4thC Christian martyr.
- Kent Brook is a tributary of the River Eden, with this stretch marking the county boundary between Surrey and Kent.
- The main building at Skeynes Park is a small Gothic mansion, built in 1840. The house visible from the footpath (with the central clock tower) is the former stable block, now a separate residence.
- Edenbridge High Street and its continuation (Station Road) are on the line of the Roman road from London to Lewes.
- Ss Peter & Paul, Edenbridge was rebuilt and extended in the 13thC and there is little trace of an earlier Norman church. It contains some fine memorials and a poignant tombstone to Ann Jemett. The tower clock has an hour hand only.
» Last updated: November 16, 2016