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Posts Tagged ‘river Ouse’

With just 4 days left in Lewes, today I was determined to find and follow the Egrets Way.

At least now I know where it starts, I didn’t waste 3/4 of my break trying to find the route.

But first I stopped off at Trinity Church, Southover. I’d been past it a number of times but it was always closed – today it was open πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜ƒ There’s quite a history attached; “The church of Southover originated as a ‘hospitium’ or guest house to serve the nearby Priory of Saint Pancras founded by William de Warenne and his wife Gundrada in 1077 AD.

The tower was built in stages between 1714 and 1738, after the collapse of the earlier tower with spire in 1698. This may have been caused by hanging a ‘Great Bell’ in the previous year, which proved too much for the earlier structure. The location of the earlier tower is not certainly known,
but from what evidence is available probably stood where the Gundrada Chapel is built now.

I was delighted to find a scallop shell in one of the glass windows with St James right above it ❀❀

After my brief visit to the church I walked down St James’s Street to have a closer look at the house at the end of the cul de sac – it looked like a gingerbread house. Imagine my amusement when on closer inspection I discovered the name of the house; The Gingerbread House ☺☺ Just perfect!!

The Gingerbread House ☺☺

I made my way towards the river via the carpark and soon picked up the Egrets Way. I’m dead keen to walk along the riverside to the little village of Southease, also a Domesday Book village and near to where Virginia Woolf, who at the time lived in nearby Rodmell, committed suicide in 1941 in the River Ouse.

Of course with all the rain over the last few days, and boy has it rained, the river is in full tumultuous flow and the riverside path is mostly a muddy quagmire, placing obstacles of watery pools in the way.

Fast flowing River Ouse

But I trudged along, determined to get as far as I could, zig-zagging from one side of the path to the other trying to find the least squelchy and muddy bits to traverse. Thanks be for my walking poles, as always they kept me upright when the mud was determined to see me on my bottom.

I arrived at one gate to find a pool of water right in the middle surrounded by mud, so balancing precariously on the wooden edges and hugging the upright struts I sort of swung my way around and through the gate….but I didn’t get very much further since the path at the next gate was just too muddy; and so I said “no, just no!”.

I beat a retreat and returned the way I had come.

Once past all the muddy puddles et al, I crossed a grassy patch and picked up the cycle/walking path that is sensibly gravelled and continued on my way.

The riverside path will have to wait for another time – perhaps when I eventually walk the South Downs Way that passes through Lewes, I may just divert for a few days and actually walk along the river to Southease….if it hasn’t been raining!!

Time will tell.

Meanwhile I followed the path, beneath the grim and dreary railway underpass, through a fine, new wooden gate and before too long I recognised the place I had originally seen the signpost for the Egrets Way, near the recycling centre. It also gave me the opportunity to see where I had gone so very wrong at my last attempt

Dreary underpass, fine wooden gate

Once I realized the error of my ways, the what and why became apparent. Instead of turning left, I was endeavouring to find a way through to the right πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺπŸ‘‰βŒπŸ‘ˆ which of course would have taken me onto the railway line….clearly I need to do a map reading course 🀣🀣🀣 Even with the help of Google maps I still went wrong. How have I managed to not get lost on previous walks! Luck, I guess 🀭🀭🀞🀞

So now that I  know my daft mistake, it doesn’t really matter since its unlikely I’ll walk that way again while here…but I’m glad I resolved the issue.

So whizzing along I made my way back into town, passing some interesting houses, the only surviving section of the Franciscan Friary

Amazing relic from 1224!!

and while chatting on the phone to the relief carer who’d just left due to issues at the house, I once again went off piste….I had planned to go to Tesco for a packet of my secret vice, but since I was so completely not going in the right direction, I gave up and went back to the house.

On the way I passed the castle for another look and more photos 😁😁…wish the weather had been this fine on Saturday!!

Lewes Castle

Next a brief stop to take a few more photos of the 15th centuryΒ  bookshop windows….and spotted another book I would dearly love to buy – bad luck, the shop won’t be open again till Friday afternoon and by then I’ll be on my way….

I’m on the home straight. Hoorah!!

A little video with some more images from my walkabout today. The weather was fantastic

Lewes

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You know how sometimes you feel like you want to visit a place and it seems like a good idea, then you go and it’s not …..🀣🀣🀣

Well yesterday I did just that..

Mistake #1 I didn’t do any research

Mistake #2 I got off the train at Newhaven Harbour

Mistake #3 I didn’t do any research

So the lessons I learned: do my research and get off at Newhaven Town stop not the harbour.

Anywayyyyy…..I went, I saw, I can tick it off my list – I didn’t get the t-shirt πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ

So, Newhaven. If I’d done my research, this is what I would have learned.

1. Newhaven Harbour is a grim industrial area, and on the wrong side of the river. In my imagination I pictured a lovely pretty harbour with colourful boats and twee huts. It isn’t. I couldn’t even bear to take a photo it’s so depressing. There is a boat marina on the opposite side.

Found some colourful boats, but obscured

2. It’s a 10 minute walk back to Newhaven Town. Which to be fair, except for the interesting wooden houses close to the riverside, is almost as depressing. I normally like a bit of decay and love old Victorian houses, but seriously…

These houses near the riverside were quite interesting

3. Even town centre is depressing.

Town Centre

4. Ho Chi Minh landed here in 1913? He was a Vietnamese revolutionary and politician. He served as Prime Minister of North Vietnam from 1945 to 1955 and President from 1945 to 1969. 

After I returned last night I ‘did some research’ πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ and this is what I found:

Newhaven: A channel ferry port in East Sussex.

Looking downstream of the River Ouse

There was a Bronze Age fort on what is now Castle Hill.

In about 480 AD the Saxons established a village near to where Newhaven now stands; named “Meeching” aka known as “Myching” or “Mitching”.
The settlement began to be known as the “new haven”.

Part of the Holmstrow hundred until the abolition of hundreds in the 19th c but not mentioned in the 1086 Domesday Book πŸ€¨πŸ˜’πŸ˜’


Lies at the mouth of the River Ouse, westward from Seaford, one of the Cinque Ports formed by Henry VIII.

In 1848, the exiled French King Louis Philippe I landed here in disguise after abdicating his throne.

The village was of little maritime importance until the opening of the railway line to Lewes in 1847.
The railway reached the port in 1847.

Dredging of the channel and other improvements to the harbour between 1850 and 1878, enabled the port to be used by cross channel ferries.
In 1863 the LB&SCR and the Chemin de Fer de l’Ouest introduced the Newhaven-Dieppe passenger service.

The most colourful part of Newhaven was in a pedestrian underpass

The London Brighton and South Coast Railway (LB&SCR) constructed their own wharf and facilities on the east side of the river, and opened the Newhaven harbour railway station.
The area then became known as the ‘new haven’, and officially recognised as ‘The Port of Newhaven’ in 1882.

Imports then included French farm products and manufactures, timber, granite and slates.

The present breakwater was built in 1890.

Newhaven harbour was designated as the principal port for the movement of men and material to the European continent during World War I.
Between 22 September 1916 and 2 December 1918, the port and town of Newhaven were designated a ‘Special Military Area’ under the ‘Defence of the Realm Regulations’, and the Harbour station was closed to the public.

During World War II, large numbers of Canadian troops were stationed at Newhaven, and the ill-fated Dieppe Raid in 1942 was largely launched from the harbour.

A Poppy Trail

When Lord Lucan vanished in 1974, his car was found in Newhaven, in Norman Road, with two types of blood in it.

Newhaven offers regular passenger services to Dieppe.

All the above research ref wikipedia

I did my best and walked in a huge circle trying to find something really interesting, and some of the little sculptures came to the party, but in all honesty, it didn’t have the magic….that thrill of exploring a new place. In retrospect I could rather have gone to Seaford. Maybe next week. Meanwhile I cut my visit short by an hour and went back to Lewes.

If you can bear it here’s a short video

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Walking never fails to throw up a few surprises and today was no exception.

It poured with rain this morning and I thought for sure my plan to walk during my break was scuppered. But by early afternoon the clouds blew away (mostly) and the sun shone bright and by 3pm it was lovely and sunny, albeit very windy.

I decided that today was the day to walk along that disused railway line, and I’m ever so glad I did….there was a delightful surprise in store.

Looking back towards the town from the entrance

It’s a beautiful walk, hundreds of trees create a green tunnel with crispy autumn leaves underfoot, and of course….lots of muddy puddles.

I did some ‘Paul Simon’ as I walked and as usual thanked my walking poles for keeping me upright 😁😁😁 Of course it had rained, ya dim woman. What a day to choose. But never no mind, on I plodded…slip sliding away…the nearer my destination….

About halfway along I noticed a beautiful towering Victorian bridge and just beneath that a group of 6 people standing about. Not at all sure what was waiting ahead, I tried to look confident and in control…as I neared the group I could hear singing

To my delight the group of people was a small choir practising for a concert and enjoying the acoustics provided by the bridge!! They were grouped around a brightly burning fire dancing merrily, it looked utterly cosy and I felt quite envious

Magic.

I stopped to listen to listen and they kindly agreed to my recording it ☺☺ the sound was amazing. After saying my thanks for the impromptu concert, I carried on along the path right to the end and passed a 2nd bridge along the way, but sadly, no further choirs….

As I neared the end of that wide green green tunnel narrowed suddenly and petered out into a narrow path amongst bushes. The whole length of that section of the railway line is 1.216kms 😁

Uninviting…

Walking back I was hoping to hear the group singing again but unfortunately as I neared the bridge I noticed them walking ahead….too bad. Their singing was amazing and I could still smell the fire.

I noticed a few left overs from the days of railways past

The detritus of humans

From there I took a quick walk upstream, on the west side, to the end of the pathway. The river, swollen with water after the downpour had burst its banks. It looked quite amazing; fat and lazy meandering its way downstream.

The path is fantastic to walk along, so I walked right to the end.

Followed right to the end…

I love this view the most

My favourite view, looking downstream

In all a most enjoyable walk and despite not pounding along like I normally do, I managed a decent 7.53kms / 12238 steps. I also noticed that the hill, at the top of which I’m currently working, has an elevation of only 65 meters….it feels more like 650 when I’m trudging back after a long walk πŸ˜‰

Mapmywalk

And now I only have 8.5 days left in Lewes. Time to conquer that blessed path downstream to Southease….

Oh and please cross fingers 🀞🀞🀞🀞 for a fine day on Saturday. I want to visit the castle, it’s my final opportunity.

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