Ditchling Beacon on the South Downs Way with Fr. John

Name of walk Ditchling Beacon on the South Downs Way with Fr. John
Date of walk 2019-09-23

I took the train from Brighton to Hassocks and met up with Fr. John for a walk from his house up to Ditchling Beacon on the South Downs.

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The walk starts at John's garden gate. We go through it and its just a short road walk to the path up on to the South Downs.

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View to Jill, one of the Jack and Jill windmills at Clayton. Jack was hidden by trees.

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John points out that this used to be Dame Vera Lynne's house before she moved down to Ditchling Village.

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The way ahead.

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View over to Oldland Windmill which we will visit later.

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We head up the track towards the top of the downs.

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Now on the top, just as it starts to rain! Thankfully it doesn't last long.

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View back to Brighton and the sea.

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A little bit of sunshine on the South Downs Way.

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Good views out.

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It can be a bit windy up here.

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Looking down on Ditchling.

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Looking over to Hassocks.

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A Fox Moth Caterpillar.

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Blue skies!

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A two photo panorama of our view back. Left click to enlarge, click again to return.

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Ditchling Beacon.

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We head on to find a lunch spot.

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Our lunch spot view looking down on Westmeston.

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John had made his usual doorstep smoked salmon sandwiches.

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Not forgetting the coffee!

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We take the track down which leads through the woods of Ditchling Nature Reserve.

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We pass a vineyard with bunches of ripe black grapes. We taste a grape.....just for quality control! Lovely!

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John finishes off with some blackberries.

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We cross a field and head into Ditchling.

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We visit St. Margaret's Church founded in the 11th century.

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There are many old buildings here.

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The duck pond.

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We follow the course of an old Roman Road across fields.

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John points out the spire of St. Hugh's Charterhouse, Parkminster in the distance. A Carthusian Monastery where John was before he became a Priest. The Carthusians are one of the more austere orders within the Catholic Church, and life for the monks is very challenging.

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View back up to the South Downs.

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Oldland Windmill which dates from 1703.

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The weather vane.

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The walk ends back at John's garden gate. Six miles, and just over four hours.

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John shows me the rainbow flagged garden gnomes of a house in a nearby street.

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These ones are two foot high!

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Not forgetting the llamas!

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Back to Brighton Pier for another sunset.

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From the pier.

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Another excellent day!

Jo.

 

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