Blog Walks

Top 5 chalk paths in East Sussex

'The path, winding like silver, trickles on...' - Edward Thomas The inspiration for this post is a love of paths...

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Eric Ravilious ‘a wet afternoon’

‘The path, winding like silver, trickles on…’ – Edward Thomas

The inspiration for this post is a love of paths, especially chalk paths, and chalk tracks, old ways, footpaths, bridleways, byways, you name it. There is something magical about the white winding ways of chalk etched into the landscape by countless footfall, stretching away from you, inviting you onwards; so much like a coursing, trickling river as alluded to in the Edward Thomas quote at the top. Another poem by him I like is called ‘The Road’ which has the lines:

They are lonely,

while we sleep, lonelier

for lack of the traveller

who is now a dream only…

Thomas is dreaming of the road and wondering, while wandering, whether they exist in the same way when no one walks them and how they would disappear should no one walk them again. In this sense they are very much alive and dynamic, their beating hearts are the constant rhythms of the steady treads of its walkers. It is the path’s past he thinks of and the past’s paths. He is also thinking of paths that wind and lead to sleep and that ‘unfathomable deep forest where all must lose their way’. Paths are physical and metaphorical, arcane yet accessible and when walking them we feel in motion, dynamic, purposeful; they lead and pull us inexorably onwards…

Here is a selection of some of my favourite paths in East Sussex:

  1. The white path trickles on, Kingston Ridge

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Further details of this path can be accessed here.

2. The Old Coach Road, Lewes to Alfriston

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Further details of this path can be accessed here.

3. Through the beech trees in Friston Forest

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4. Into the holloway, Alfriston

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5. The Saxon shore way view, Hastings

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Thanks for reading and please leave a comment below if you liked it or would like more information.

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