The early start and length of this walk meant that we were small, keen group of walkers but our efforts were greatly rewarded with beautiful weather and a lovely long walk.

We made our way out of Oxted on familiar and beautiful paths through spring woodland with plenty of bluebells, celadines, wood anemones and wild garlic. There were views over to the South Downs & fields with sheep with lambs basking in the unexpected warmth and sunshine. At the Carpenter’s Arms at Limpsfield Chart we diverged from former trails and went into more woodland hoping to see a natural pond which, the previous year, had been heaving with frogs doing their best to pass on their genes to future generations. This year it was completely frog-free which was worrying. Possibly it had dried up last summer and was no longer a good place for them and as we know, amphibians are extremely sensitive to changes in their environment. Sadly, we continued on our way to Westerham where we sat on the Green, in the sunshine and then did our bit to keep the local tea shop going.

After lunch we were deafened by the locals indulging in Clay Pigeon shooting but luckily, they were supposed to stop at 2 and our path was officially open again so we continued along the valley without anyone getting shot. This part of the walk was a combination of meadows and more woodland until we made a figure of eight, crossing our outward path at the Carpenter’s Arms. Again more woodland until we got to the pretty village of Limpsfield which is said to have nice cafes but which are always closed by the time we get there. Why do tea shops and cafes close at 4? What about the weary walkers, longing and willing to pay for tea? Anyway, we continued, sans refreshment, and arrived back at Oxted in good time for the various trains to London.

Harriet.  Photos by Ida