Text copyrighted © Colin Bridge 2009-2019
Section 13 Out
Etchingham to Stonegate
|Map||OS Explorer 136 The Weald|
|Distance||5 miles /3 hours|
|Start||Etchingham church. Some on street parking.|
|Comment||There are only the station services at Stonegate Station and charged parking in the station car park. Burwash village with pubs and shops is on the return section for those making the circular section walk. The countryside is pleasant but there are many stiles and many are currently broken. This is still marshy country.|
Walk past Etchingham parish church towards the level crossing on the railway ahead. Just before the end of the churchyard on the left, turn left through a vehicle entrance into the churchyard and walk up, passing the end of the church on the left, to an iron kissing gate at the top.
Go through and forward through trees, passing ponds, to emerge through a gate at the top onto a road. Turn right on the road. Keep up past cottages to the point where the road turns sharp right to cross a railway bridge.
Here, turn left up a bank, to a stile into a field. Turn right to go along the field edge with a fence and trees on the right. Keep on into the next field. The path keeps close to the fence by the railway on the right. However, the field edge ahead is very marshy. It would be sensible to keep to the higher ground on the left, across to the far side, then drop down to the fieldgate and stile in the corner by the railway.
Go into the next field and on, still by the railway, to a wooden fieldgate at the far end. Go through and turn immediately right to a stile and a railway crossing. Cross the line with care and climb a very high stile into a field at the far side. Go straight across to a footbridge. Over this, reach and cross a second footbridge into an area of scrubland. Immediately turn left to follow the hedge and stream on the left. Soon reach a corner and bear right still following the hedge on the left.
At the top corner reach a stile. Cross into woodland and continue uphill. Pass a house on the left and continue on up towards the top of the wood. The path swings left, out of the trees towards an open grassy area and joins a vehicle drive. Turn right on this and follow it for ¼ mile to emerge onto a road. Turn left on this road gradually uphill for ½ mile.
At the top of the hill the road bends quite sharply right then soon left. Pass a house on the left called ‘High Den’, and immediately turn off the road onto a concrete drive with a conifer hedge on the right. Keep on down the drive for some way towards Old Shoyswell Manor Farm.
On nearing the oast houses in the farm buildings, keep on the drive as it turns sharply right. In a few paces turn left off the drive onto a rough tarmac track with a conifer hedge on the right. Soon pass a bungalow on the left. At the bottom cross a stream and go through a metal fieldgate into a field.
Turn sharply left and cross to a broken stile by a metal fieldgate. Cross and go up the field ahead aiming to the right side of a copse of trees at the top. Go under power lines on the way up. At the top, by the trees, cross another broken stile by a metal fieldgate and go forward along the edge of the copse on the left, bearing left still along the edge of the trees. Pass ponds down in the trees and reach and cross another broken stile by a rusty fieldgate. Cross to another broken stile by a metal fieldgate and emerge onto a vehicle drive.
Turn right on this along to emerge onto a road. Go on along the road in the same direction downhill for 200 metres. At the bottom turn left off the road onto the entrance drive of Eatonden Manor Farm. Just before the entrance gate, turn right up a gravel track, passing the buildings on the left. At the top cross a stile on the right and go forward across the field passing barns on the left.
Reach and cross a broken stile by a metal fieldgate into the next field. Bear right up and across the field to the far top right corner. Find and cross a stile into the corner of an adjoining field. Immediately turn left to cross another stile. Go forward along the top edge of the field and leave by a stile at the far side. Keep on down a path enclosed between bushes and soon enter a wood.
Go forward on a leafy path along the top edge of the wood. Eventually reach a dilapidated wire fence. Here turn left to go down with the fence on the right. On reaching a broken stile on the right, cross and continue on a feint path through the wood to the far side. Emerge into a field. Turn diagonally left down the field to the far bottom left corner by a railway embankment.
Leave the field and cross a stream into a rising field. Keep very close to the wooden fence on the left along the foot of the railway embankment squeezing by a mound of earth on the right. Soon reach a white gate on the left which leads to a railway crossing. Do not cross the railway but keep forward with the railway on the left and a fence on the right.
Follow the enclosed path round to the right and go along by an extensive garden down to a wooden fieldgate into woods. Keep on to a second gate and on up into a field. Follow the field edge with a treeline on the left. Eventually exit through a metal fieldgate and bear right along by a hedge on the right. Go through a gate at the end of the field and soon bear left between a hedge on the left and a fence on the right.
Pass cottages on the left. Keep forward on the main track ignoring a footpath off left. At a Y-fork bear left and follow the gravel track past farm buildings down to Stonegate Station and the end of the section.