A lovely walk through an often overlooked part of the Weald, on the border between the high and low Weald. Gently rolling countryside with woodlands fields and attractive greenways.
Distance, Terrain and Time
9.85 Km / 6.12 Miles, Gently rolling terrain with no serious ascents. 2-3 hours
There are a large number of stiles on this walk and the route weaves in and out, although it is mostly well signed. You will need a 1-25,000 ordnance survey map to check that you are in the right place
Start and finish points
Bus stops at Wivelsfield Green or, alternatively the Farmers pub at Scaynes Hill (starting at point 3)
In 2018 the 166 bus ran 6 times a day on Mondays to Fridays to Wivelsfield Green from Lewes and Haywards Heath.
In the same year the 31 bus ran roughly hourly Monday to Saturday to Scaynes Hill from Haywards Heath, North Chailey and Uckfield.
For bus and train times see Traveline South East
Ordnance Survey maps
Explorer series number 135 (you will definitely need this)
Shops at Wivelsfield Green and Scaynes Hill (petrol station)
Pubs at Wivelsfield Green and Scaynes Hill
1) Start at the Wivelsfield Green bus stop. From the stop walk north for about 20 metres to a road junction. Turn right. Pass the village shop on the right and continue along the road to pass the Cock Inn on your left. Take the first turning on the left after the Cock- Nursery Lane. Quickly come to a fork. Take the right fork, continuing along Nursery Lane to its end.
At the end of the lane is a rather menacing notice threatening to shoot trespassers, but you continue through a gate and then turn immediately right, passing by the side of a house over a stile and then through part of its grounds, and then cross another stile to enter a field. Keep to the left hand side of the field. At the end of the field cross two stiles with a bridge between them to enter another field.
Bear left. You will see a wood in front of you. Aim for its left hand side, where there is a stile. Cross this and walk along the side of the wood, which bends round to your right. Come to another stile. Cross this and enter the wood, walking along its edge.
Turn left at a junction with a farm road. Come to a T junction. Turn left heading towards farm buildings. Just before the buildings turn right down another track, following a footpath sign.
After 50 metres turn left following a footpath sign. You now follow a broad route fenced on either side, dodging trees. Come to the end of the trees and keep straight ahead along the side of a field, with a hedge on your right. Look out for a sign leading you through a gate on your right. Go through the gate.
You now find an attempt to confuse you. The landowner has signposted a route from the gate which goes straight ahead through paddocks. But this is not the right of way. Instead turn left at the gate to walk towards buildings. This is historic Holford Manor. Walk past the manor, bearing right along the edge of the fields. Go through a gate and walk along the edge of the fields until you come to a gate on your left where you join the Holford Manor Drive. Turn right on this.
2) Walk along the drive for about 30 metres to come to a stile on your left. Cross this. You now come to another unofficial diversion, albeit a harmless one. Go through the gate ahead of you on your right and head diagonally across a paddock. In the far corner, enter a field and walk along the right hand side of the field.
At the end of the field go through a gate to enter a large field. Continue ahead with the field boundary on your right until you come to a path junction. Although the legal right of way turns right here, it is easier to follow the sign which points straight ahead, towards some stables. Turn left at the stables and then right to cross a stile. (This area can be muddy). You are now in another large field. Keep to the right hand side of the field, descending gently to a corner of the field by a stream. Turn left and then right over a bridge
Go right after the bridge. And come to a hedge. Keep straight ahead, walking with a stream on your right, to walk round the right hand edge of the field. The path keeps bending to your left around the edge of the field until you come to the corner of the field. Enter the next field via a stile. Keep as straight on as you can after the stile, avoiding the vegetation. In about 10 metres come to a stile on your right. Cross this and walk along the right hand edge of the field to come to a metalled drive.
Turn left along this and walk along it until you come to a junction. The signage is a bit confusing here, but you should walk up a metalled drive to your right. This goes between two houses. At its end, slightly to the right, a path continues ahead in the same direction.
You are now on an attractive way which climbs gradually, often in trees, for about 800 metres until it comes to a drive. At the drive you will see a continuation of your way on the other side of the drive, slightly to your right. You now emerge near the road with the Farmers pub on your left. Walk towards the entrance of the pub.
The bus stops for the 31 bus to Haywards Heath, Chailey and Uckfield are about 300 metres to the north west of the pub on the main road.
3) Walk past the entrance to the pub (or, if you have gone in, turn left out of the door) Almost immediately there is a signpost on your left. Follow a path straight through some houses and across some roads. Emerge from the houses to find a tarmac lane coming in from your right which bends round to continue in the same direction as you have been going. Keep straight ahead down this lane. You are now on the Sussex Border Path
The lane gently descends. After about 800 metres you come to a signposted junction. There is a path to the left, a lane going straight on and a track to the right. Initially go down this last track for about 5 metres. You come to a private sign. Just to the left is a footpath, which descends parallel to the track but fenced off from it. This seems to be a diversion from the route shown on some maps. Just before a stream turn left and follow the path, which is fairly obvious.
Cross a track and then come to a junction with another footpath. Turn left. Enter a field. Keep on the right hand side of the field. Cross a stile at the end of the field. You will find yourself in Ham Lane, an attractive boundaried path which seems quite old.
4) Turn right into Ham Lane. There are trees on either side of you but these are probably grown out hedges. Then you pass Ham Wood and enter Wilderness Wood. Look out for coniferous woodland on your left. Shortly after the end of this there is a signposted junction. Turn left here, leaving the Sussex Border Path.
Walk gently uphill through the woods to come to a track across your way. Do not follow this track. Your way is almost straight ahead, turning slightly to the left of the direction that you have been walking in. It is easy to get lost here. Come to a stile and enter a field.
Initially, walk round the edge of the field, keeping the wood on your left. Then, at a signpost, start to cross the field. You will see the buildings and enclosures of Hole Farm in front of you. Aim for the right of these.
Cross into another (quite large) field. There is no clear route through this field, so keep ahead in the same general direction as you have been going, keeping the field boundary about 20 metres on your left. At the end of the field you cross a stile. Then keep straight ahead.
You are now on Nursery Lane, your outward route. Walk down Nursery Lane to reach the main road. Turn right and retrace your steps to the Wivelsfield Green bus stop.