Section 15 Return
Five Ashes to Mayfield
|OS Explorer 135 Ashdown Forest
|3 miles/ 2 hours
|The Five Ashes Inn, some on street parking.
|A short walk with some hilly stretches. A short link on a busy road without a pavement on the outskirts of Mayfield; care and a hi-viz vest desirable (light and easy to carry for all road walking). An alternative route back through the village centre is provided.
With the Five Ashes Inn behind, cross the main road and go up Leeds Lane opposite for nearly a mile. At a Y-fork turn left up Mere’s Lane. Pass the buildings of Mere’s Farm on the right and a bungalow then turn right off the road over a stile by a wooden fieldgate.
Go away from the road through a second gate on a concrete track towards distant trees. On reaching them go through a metal fieldgate and on for ¼ mile. Where the track goes through a metal fieldgate and begins to bear right downhill, go left over a stile and up the field by the hedge on the right. At the top corner by a wood, turn right into the next field and walk down still with a hedge on the right.
At the bottom cross a footbridge into a wood and keep on upto the top. Cross a stile into a field and follow the hedge on the right to the top. Here go through a metal fieldgate and keep on up a horse paddock towards a cement stable block. Cross a stile and footbridge just in front of the stable and walk up the side to a T-junction. Turn left on a farm track and walk up for some distance passing more stables on the left. At the very top go through a wooden fieldgate to a T-junction. Turn right over an old railway bridge and follow the roadway around and up to a junction with a main road.
(the route now involves some unpleasant roadwalking to the next footpath; to avoid this turn left up to a junction then right to follow the road back into Mayfield, pass the shops then straight on down to the Carpenter’s Arms)
Turn right along and down this busy road for ¼ mile. Stay in single file facing the traffic and step off road when vehicles approach. If available wear a hi-viz waistcoat.
At the bottom of the hill, where the wood on the left ends, cross left over the road to find a footpath hidden in bushes. Follow it up along the edge of the wood to emerge into a field and continue up with a fence on the right. Go through another belt of trees and continue along with fence still on the right to reach a brick hut.
Drop down a bank on the right and go forward over a drive and up into a field beyond. Keep on in the same direction with Mayfield up ahead. At the end of the field cross a stile into a wood. Drop steeply down to a footbridge then steeply straight up the other side to a stile into a field with a church up ahead. Go up by fence on right to a stile into next field.
Go up to a further stile and cross to continue uphill. The path becomes enclosed between gardens and houses then emerges onto a road. Turn right and continue along to a junction. Bear left on the road going steeply uphill. At the next junction bear right and continue on to finally emerge at a main road opposite the former Carpenter’s Arms and the start of the section. The Rose & Crown is just down on the right.