Looking for somewhere to walk in the Uckfield area?

This article is shared from the recent edition of the Uckfield News:


Horsted Green Park: Spring delights within walking distance of Uckfield
Horsted Green Park, on the outskirts of Uckfield, has quickly established itself as a popular spot for walkers, especially those with dogs.

It is designed to reduce the number of visitors by car to the Ashdown Forest, especially those heading there for a daily walk with their pooches.

The park – about 73 acres – was opened early last autumn and is becoming lush this spring after the winter rains.

At the moment, spring meadow flowers are in bloom, trees are coming into leaf and the sound of larks can be heard.

There are ponds, viewing places and even an orchard.

Paths are hard and topped with loose chippings.

The park can be reached on foot from Uckfield town centre, following a route from the Victoria Pleasure Ground and using an under-pass beneath the A22 to enter the site.

From Horsted Green Park itself, there are extensive views across the fields to Uckfield and Ridgewood, where the building works on the former Ridgewood Farm are clearly visible.

Horsted Green Park is officially known as a Suitable Alternative Natural Green Space (SANGS) and is designed to divert people away from the ecologically sensitive Ashdown Forest.

The overall strategy is to help protect the forest’s special protection area status, including safeguarding rare birds such as the nightjar and Dartford warbler, by cutting the problems arising from visitor numbers.

The park, and one at Crowborough, has been developed and initially paid for by Wealden District Council.

The authority will get the money back from developers by way of a ‘roof tax’ on new housing.

In 2018, a council spokesperson told the Uckfield News: “We are paying for it up front, using the News Homes Bonus [a government fund] from the Revolving Infrastructure Fund, but will be repaid by contributions from the Community Infrastructure Levy as housing is built, so that this money can then be used to contribute up-front towards other infrastructure improvements.”

By working in this way, the district council has “pump-primed” the new parks at Little Horsted and Crowborough to make sure they are available for use as the new houses are built and people move in.


Uckfield and East Grinstead line

Due to engineering works, there will be no trains this weekend between South Croydon and Uckfield and East Grinstead.

Engineering work on routes to Uckfield and East Grinstead 23-25 May 2020


Good morning,

Customers who must travel and need to use public transport on the bank holiday weekend on the routes between East Grinstead / Uckfield and London are being urged to plan ahead and to check their journey plans.

Essential engineering works mean that no trains can run on the routes between South Croydon and East Grinstead or Uckfield from Saturday 23 to Monday 25 of May 2020.

Rail replacement buses will operate to connect both routes with Purley, with TfL bus route 412 serving Riddlesdown station. In addition, ticket acceptance is in place on alternative Southern, Thameslink and Southeastern services for passengers on the two routes who can travel from alternative stations.

The rail replacement service has been specified to support social distancing. Customers are being reminded of Government advice and to only use public transport if their journey is essential and cannot be made by other means.

If you need any additional information, please let me know.

Best wishes,


Paul Codd

Senior Stakeholder Manager


Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR)


County Care’s VE Day celebration picnic

We recently ran a photograph competition ‘who could produce the best VE Day celebration picnic’ with some of the County Care group.  County Care are valued Station Partners, who work hard looking after the planting at several of Southern’s stations and have even taken the decision to run their own allotment to ensure as soon as we can all get back work, that their stations have a lovely supply of own grown flowers and plants.

The entries were judged by Kelvin of County Care, who chose Faye’s entry.  On top of preparing a delicious picnic for her family to share Faye had done a little bit extra by designing a ‘stay safe’ poster.

Southern are going to award Faye a prize – wonder what it will be????

GTR information on train travel

The latest information from GTR on necessary train travel

Bluebells are still in bloom

Carpets of bluebells are still in full bloom and can be seen everywhere, hopefully we can all get the chance to appreciate them before the season ends.

If  you looking  for a different walking route why not download a copy of the Uckfield & East Grinstead line guide?  It lists local area walks and the addresses of many websites  with maps,  routes,  and local information.

Bluebell Railway is to hold a virtual celebration event

Bluebell Railway to hold virtual 60 years celebration

The Bluebell Railway is to hold a virtual celebration of its 60 years of operation in August.

The heritage line had originally intended to hold three days of activities and displays from Friday 7 to Sunday 9 August but has now postponed the major event until next year.

Bluebell Railway. Photo: Peter Edwards.

Robert Hayward, chairman of the Bluebell Railway’s Diamond Anniversary steering group, said: “The pragmatic decision not to hold the event as previously planned allows the Bluebell Railway to focus its efforts on reopening.

“We will be holding a virtual event this August and are currently working on various ideas for the event because we are still going to celebrate 60 years of operating as a heritage line.”

He added: “New opportunities may be available to us in 2021 that are not possible now. Next year’s event will be on a date to be agreed. I’m sure everyone will understand and appreciate the decision the railway has reached.”


The Bluebell Railway’s education department is also planning to produce a series of online ‘Storytime’ videos for children featuring books about trains.

The railway-related stories have been selected – and are read – by volunteers from the education department. The clips will then be edited before being uploaded to the Railway’s YouTube channel.

Ruth Rowatt from the Bluebell Railway’s education department said: “Storytime with Bluebell Railway is a nice way to keep our younger visitors informed and to keep the railway in their hearts and minds.

“I know that many children were looking forward to visiting Stepney and all his friends at Bluebell Railway this spring. I wanted to let them know that we at the railway are thinking of them and looking forward to welcoming them when we reopen.”

In addition, the Bluebell Railway is asking its members with a model railway layout to film locomotives in action in order to produce a virtual gala to replace the events which had been organised for the spring and summer this year.

Virtual gala

The virtual gala will be posted on YouTube for members and supporters to view.

All events at the Bluebell Railway up until the end of August have either been cancelled or postponed. Events from September until the end of December are still under review.

The Bluebell Railway opened as a heritage line on 7 August 1960 as the UK’s first standard gauge preserved passenger railway operating steam-hauled timetabled services. It runs on 11 miles of track from Sheffield Park in East Sussex to East Grinstead in West Sussex.

This story was shared from an edition of the Uckfield News

Some travel news from GTR/Southern

If you are having to use trains during the current lock down the following is an update from GTR/Southern.


Early May Bank Holiday – Engineering Works


Good afternoon,

Customers who must travel on the Brighton Main Line on the May bank holiday weekend of 9 & 10 May are being reminded to plan ahead as our partners at Network Rail complete essential engineering work at Clayton Tunnel near Hassocks, and to the level crossing at Cooksbridge near Lewes.

In addition, on Sunday 10 May, some Thameslink services will not call at London Bridge station.

On both 9 and 10 May, on the Brighton Main Line, no trains will operate south of Three Bridges to either Brighton, or to Lewes. This will also mean that there is no direct Brighton Main Line route available to London for the East Coastway (Hastings / Eastbourne via Lewes).

Trains will continue to operate between London and Three Bridges, along both Coastway routes (Hastings <> Brighton <> Littlehampton) and as in previous engineering work, Brighton to London Victoria services will operate on diversion via Littlehampton and Horsham with trains at the maximum length.

Rail replacement buses will also operate between Three Bridges and Brighton / Lewes.

We have extensively planned our alternative arrangements for social distancing and to provide the fastest possible journey time for customers making essential journeys. We are however asking that for travel between London and the coast that passengers use the diverted railway service operating via Littlehampton and Horsham wherever possible given the size of trains.

Customers are also being reminded that on Sunday 10 May only, Thameslink trains operating on the route to/from Bedford will not stop at London Bridge station. Customers are advised to either change trains at East Croydon or to travel to London Blackfriars.

Finally, this weekend of 2 and 3 May, essential engineering is also taking place at Cooksbridge to install a platform extension. In the future, this will enable more frequent use of 8 carriage trains on the route between London Victoria and Eastbourne via Lewes as part of the works to support the £150m upgrade of Gatwick Airport station. This work means that trains are replaced with buses between Lewes and Haywards Heath via Cooksbridge and Plumpton. Train services will continue to operate between Lewes and Brighton, and for longer distance journeys between London and the East Coastway we are recommending that passengers consider travelling via Brighton.


Govia Thameslink Railway



Do you have an onward commute through London?


How will London’s transport network emerge from Lockdown? An invitation from London Travelwatch to help shape the future!

Over the last few weeks we and the transport industry have been focussed on the travel needs of essential workers. But as we approach a possible change in the Government’s position on the lockdown we want to explore what the industry might do to continue to serve essential workers, and also meet the needs of larger numbers of us who will be starting to return to our everyday lives.

We would very much like to hear your views on what travelling in London might be like as we emerge from lockdown and would like to invite you to a virtual seminar on Wednesday 6 May at 2.30pm. We’d like to hear about your recent experiences when moving around London and discuss what needs to be done in the near future to make you feel more confident about getting out and about again.

We are delighted that we will be joined by the following speakers:

Navin Shah, Chair of the London Assembly Transport Committee will open the seminar

Heidi Alexander, Deputy Mayor for Transport will talk about the passenger and transport issues that both the Mayor of London and TfL are thinking about as we emerge from lockdown

Bharat Mehta from Trust for London will give the perspective of transport users experiencing poverty

Josef Schneider, Chair of the European Passengers Federation will give us some insights into how Germany is starting to re-start its public transport

Kirsty Hoyle from Transport for All will talk about the needs of disabled users as we move into the next phase

John McGeachy from Age UK: the needs of older people as we move into the next phase

If you would like to attend, you can register here. We would also welcome questions to put to the panel. If you would like to ask one, please email events@londontravelwatch.org.uk with some details about yourself – we are particularly keen to hear from essential workers. We will be in touch closer to the event with joining instructions. Please feel free to mention our event to anyone you think might be interested.

We will also be holding a further event later in the year thinking about how transport in London might look different after the crisis.

A rainbow at Eridge station

A photograph taken at beautiful Eridge station.  There are many pictures of rainbows being displayed in windows around the country so we thought we’d share a real one with you.

(Photo taken many months ago.)

National Gardens Scheme virtual tours

Not quite as good as visiting in person, but the National Gardens Scheme have provided virtual tours of some fantastic gardens on their website.  Log on and go for a wander around some of the most beautiful gardens.

Virtual garden visits collection

In partnership with

Southern Rail GWR Acorp dft