Doing the Recce ( An old-fashioned word meaning setting the scene, or working out the walk)

On Friday I set off to lean a new walk. Hastings to Rye. I had two other group leaders helping me, I would have been lost otherwise. It is essential to do this to find out; what works, where the toilets are, where to eat, how long it takes and any changes that may have been made En-route.) I’m sure when I lead the walk on 1/6/2018 it will be a perfect day!  Hopefully, Martin will be a joint leader on this walk. Martin & I had previously walked on a walk led by another South Bank Group member but it was from Rye to Hastings, so both of us were sort of doing this a bit based on that memory.

view of Hastings town from top of stairs

A view from the hill of Hastings.



 In a way, this was really creating a new walk, based on some knowledge of the area. Getting to Hastings was easy and we headed straight through the old town and turned in at a side entrance by The Dolphin Inn, there is a steep staircase leading up to East Cliffs Hastings.


Bollards sign post routes

These bollards really help


Martin is well acquainted with Hastings, as he occasionally displays his artwork at a Gallery near the seafront at St Leonard’s. On this occasion, he met us in Hastings and told us there was a warning about erosion in Hastings Country Park which meant we would be diverted.


a bridge crossing over near

I recognise this bit, leads to a naturist beach


We were keen to avoid too much of the steep climbs of which there are many. The diversion worked quite well as we only had 3 difficult steep climbs in which you have to stop at the end to catch your breath. Hastings Country Park is pretty well signposted but is vast; if you are not careful it is easy to get waylaid then exhausted. Texan Jane held firmly to the map correcting us when we were going wrong. Both Jane & Martin have been leading walks for many years, but still, it was my walk, but we all contributed to making it happen. The rain poured down from 2 pm- 6 pm, we had no choice but to carry on.


coming out of woods to cliff overlooking sea

Coming out to Fairlight

picture from cliffs coming out of Hastings Country Park

Looking out to Sea, huge clouds, lots of rain, from 2pm-6pm


Gray and blue skylight picture of sea

looking towards Petts level

seat with a view over coast

Seat with a view, out to sea.


leaders leading the way

Where now Jane? eh, Martin?!!!

a picture of sign post in three directions

I’m sure it’s this way, yes definitely, I ‘m sure…… 


Buying the right tickets & learning how to get around the somewhat overcomplicated  system

My word of advice is to avoid advanced tickets if possible and try to get the off-peak return instead. Split ticketing is another way of possibly getting a cheaper ride and using the oyster up to Zone 9 then buying the ticket from further out. Below is a link which has some interesting information about travelling, I occasionally attend a Blog Meet UP Group in Euston and would recommend this blog about travel. blog/travel-money-matters/5-tips-for-cheap-train-travel

 Having the right clothes

Having the right walking gear is essential, the subject deserves it’s own blog, although that might be a bit boring. Google, Goretex! and you will be on the right track. It is not fun being soaking wet, knowing we have another 8 miles to walk in the rain, believe me!

camber castle near Rye

picture of ruined but still standing Camber Castle

Looking through the window of Camber Castle


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When I first joined the Ramblers in 2011 I received a free copy of The Best Walks in Britain, and took it with me on my first visit to Seaford; from where I took a bus to East Dean then walked back to Seaford via The Seven Sisters, after I completed my Accredited walk leaders course, I started taking a group out doing variations on a theme. This year I am extending it to Eastbourne, which is roughly an extra 4 miles. See my Up & Coming Walk Page for further details.



Until next time keep on keeping on














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