SWC 90 - Berwick to Seaford
Length: 18.4 km (11.4 miles). Options to shorten and lengthen
Toughness: 6 out of 10 One steady ascent of High & Over Hill: otherwise, 4 out of 10
London Victoria: 09-16 hrs Littlehampton and Eastbourne service; CJ 09-22; EC 09-32 hrs. Train splits at Haywards Heath
Arrive Lewes: 10-23 hrs Change trains
Leave Lewes: 10-47 hrs Hastings service from Brighton
Arrive Berwick: 10-56 hrs
Return: Seaford to London Victoria via Lewes: 25 and 53 mins past the hour
Rail ticket: either a day return to Berwick (Sussex) or Seaford is usually accepted by on-train inspectors
It has become customary for SWC's Wednesday walkers to give this walk an outing every year early in March, when new born lambs are first let loose in the fields. But this walk is a delight at all times of year, for its variety, historic interest, views, a hill to sort you out - plus top drawer water features.
From the Walk Directions you will note there are several options to this walk. But the best one - in my opinion - takes the Alternative start to Alciston then Berwick Church (well worth a visit to see its murals) before you head for Alfriston where you have three pubs and at least one deli for a lunch stop. Being a Bank Holiday, Alfriston and its pubs are likely to be very busy, but if you split up into small groups you should manage to find space somewhere for all wishing to dine. I do not recommend your deferring lunch for 40 mins until you reach Littlington, with its excellent pub, the Plough and Harrow, as almost certainly all tables in the pub will be pre-booked.
After Alfriston you walk beside the Cuckmere River to Littlington before you tackle High & Over Hill. On the way up, as you catch your breath, then once on top, do stop to admire the panoramic views - your reward for the climb. You now head down off the Hill on its 'tother side to arrive at Exceat. Here you can complete your walk by taking the bus (regular service) to Seaford, reducing the length of your overall walk by almost 4 miles. But if you continue with the walk, you now head gradually uphill on the Vanguard Way to Cuckmere Haven, where you have a superb view of the Seven Sisters over to your left. Do remember to glance backwards for this view as you walk along the cliff top on an undulating path all the way to Seaford, taking care to keep well clear of the cliff edge where the chalk has eroded or sheared off in landslips.
The newly refurbished and reopened fish & chip restaurant - Trawlers (an SWC favourite) is usually open on Bank Holidays for those in need of sustenance. Otherwise, there are several pubs and bars in Seaford awaiting your custom before you head for the railway station for your journey home after what I hope has been a rewarding and enjoyable day's walk.
Walk Directions are here: [Walk directions, OS Map, and GPS Data]
Walk directions, maps, and GPS data.
This walk is cross-posted from the Saturday Walkers Club website. See This Week's Walks (https://www.walkingclub.org.uk/swc/this-weeks-walks.shtml) for last minute changes and more events.
Everyone welcome, especially visitors to London.
Our walks are 'self led' and don't have walk leaders, so you should have your own copy of the route, i.e. a printout, map, pdf on your smartphone. See: New Members (https://www.walkingclub.org.uk/swc/index.shtml). Don't worry, it work really well in practise.
Attendance is weather dependent, but is usually from 5-30 people.
A Network Railcard gives 1/3 off train fares. Check TFL weekend engineering works. On the day, use #swcwalks on Twitter.
This Meetup account isn't monitored. You can leave a message on our This Weeks Walk page (https://www.walkingclub.org.uk/swc/this-weeks-walks.shtml).