The North Downs: Farthing Downs and Happy Valley

We will meet in the morning at Couldson South train station, within five minutes we will be on open access land. This area is famous for its chalk grasslands, a rare commodity now in Modern Britain. It is one of the few remaining homes of the Yellow Rattle, a plant that is parasitic on grass.  Due to the vast range of species in this area and the number of endangered and endemic species it has been classed as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) as well as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (ANOB)

From Farthing Downs Looking into Happy Valley.

From Farthing Downs Looking into Happy Valley.

You will be guided up the brow of the hill giving you unrivalled views over London as you look back.

As we progress further up onto the Downs, medieval ridge and furrow patterns start to become visible from the old ploughing methods. Travelling up further we venture later into history, finding the dug out remains of old long barrows.

At the highest point on Farthing Downs we return to the present day with the Millennium Cairn showing us the locations of some of the London sky line, as well as Chaldon Church a site we will be visiting later in the day.

 

Now though you will drop down into Happy Valley, a lost land of ancient hedgerows, pilgrims paths and underground rivers. If you are lucky enough you might even catch a glimpse of the Roe deer that live in the woods.

 

After a refreshing lunch in a local pub with roaring open fires, or a lovely beer garden we will continue our exploration. Crossing onto the other side of the valley we will visit a grade 1 listed Norman Church. Built out of locally available flint this lovely building exudes history inside and out, a brief exploration of the famous Norman doom painting on the back wall and our walk restarts. Heading over the aptly named ‘big muddy field’ we return to Happy Valley, passing the point where a WW2 plane was excavated we make our way back to Farthing Downs and slowly, with the London Skyline beckoning us, back to the train station.

 

Price:

£40 per person or £200 for a private group booking.

 

Please ring if there is a date you have in mind.

To book please go to the Booking Page.