29 January 2014 – the bridleway was extremely muddy and slippery on the part nearest Argos Hill Road but should have dried up considerably since then
|Length||5.6km (3.5 miles)|
|Terrain||1 mile on bridleway and the rest on road with 300yds on main road. No pavement for 150 yds on A267|
|Time||60 – 100 minutes|
|Suitability||Walkers, walkers with dogs, joggers, runners, horses, off-road cyclists|
|Start||South Street car park, Mayfield (TN20 6DF) ; grid reference TQ586268 ; GPS co-ordinates 51° 1’11.14″N, 0°15’42.34″E.|
|Public transport||Bus route 51/251/252 between Tunbridge Wells and Heathfield/Eastbourne stops in Mayfield High Street, from where you can walk west (away from Tunbridge Wells) past the end of the shops for 300 yards and join the walk at the turn into Rotherfield Lane. There is also a community bus to & from Wadhurst twice a day. For detailed bus timetables go to the Mayfield and Five Ashes website|
|Parking||Car park for 50 cars in South Street, which can be full at peak times|
View 3.5 mile route along roads and bridleway from South Street car park in Mayfield in a larger map
Turn left out of the car park and go along South Street and continue for 200 yds until it turns right and comes out at a junction with the Mayfield Baptist Chapel on your left. Cross diagonally right to a small road that leads uphill in 30m to the High Street. Here you turn left along the High Street away from the main shops until you come to Rotherfield Lane on your right in 150 yards.
Turn down Rotherfield Lane and follow it for a three-quarters of a mile to its junction with the A267. You will first descend steeply then go under the old railway bridge which nowadays carries the A267 Mayfield by-pass and climb up the other side, at first steeply then more gently with fields on your left and houses and farms on your left.
Keep straight on until you reach the A267 ignoring a turning to the right 100 yards before the end. Now turn left onto the main road. Here you need to be very careful since for the first 200 yards there is no pavement though there is a sloping verge if you need to get off the road to avoid something. After another 250 yards you arrive at the turning to Argos Hill and turn up this road.
Climb on Argos Hill Lane for only 100 yards and then take the path left to Spring Place and in 20 yards the footpath which descends on the left of the house entrance. This is steep and can be very slippery in wet weather. But is soon levels off and the bridleway takes you through woods and then between hedges with fields on either side, though you need to be very tall or on a horse to get a good view.
After three-quarters of a mile on the bridleway, there is a gate which you pass through to see Pages Farm on your right and the path becomes a private road from here on. There is another gate to pass through after 150 yards and then the bridleway descends and turns to reach Fir Toll Road after a further 500 yards.
At Fir Toll Road turn left, pass over a bridge and then climb to come out on the A267 Mayfield by-pass. Use the pedestrian island to cross and on the other side the footpath on your left which climbs in a zig-zag and then leads into Fir Toll Close where you soon arrive at a five way junction.
Turn right down Stone Cross and in 200 yards bear left at the triangle into Knowle Hill and immediately left again into West Street. After 100 yards you will see the entrance to Knowle Park on your right which is where a number of famous actors lived in the 1950s when Mayfield station provided a convenient trip into London. They included William Hartnell, the first Doctor Who.
After 600 yards just before the end of West Street, turn right into South Street and return to the start of the walk. If you arrived by bus, then keep on up West Street right to the top and you will find yourself back in the High Street where you arrived.