Walk 90: Hucking and North Downs Way
Distance: 8.6 miles (4 hours)
OS Map: Explorer 148 (Start at grid reference
Note: We have had a report that part of
this walk, particularly path KH645, is quite heavy going in winter, so
this may be a walk best kept for the summer months. We will be
discussing with KCC what might be done to improve the path surface.
Park in Woodland
Trust car park on Hucking Estate.
The location is can be reached from junction 8 of M20 by
taking A20 towards Lenham, first left through Eyhorne Street and
Hollingbourne, follow signs to Hucking then Hook and Hatchet into
Church Road when the car park is soon on your left.
Cross Church Road, go over stile and make for
kissing gate through fence on right. Through gate, cross rough meadow to lane.
Take path opposite. Follow right hand edge of field to gate.
Through gate, immediately go through another gate on left and
follow right hand edge of field downhill and through another gate to
bottom of dry valley. Turn left along valley bottom through wood, keeping left at fork, to
Take path into wood opposite and almost
immediately take a path on right and climb steadily through wood to
a field. Bear left and
go uphill along boundary between orchard on left and field on right.
At far side go right along hedge until you reach a stile. Over stile, bear left to far corner of field and over stile
Turn right until there is a path through a gap
in a hedge just before a locked gate. Take path uphill with hedge on right and cross orchards.
On meeting track at far side, turn left along it. Take path on right and head diagonally across field to point
were line of pylons crosses hedge. Search for stile in hedge and on the other side bear right
across paddock to another stile into lane.
Turn right along lane then, immediately
opposite driveway to Swanton Court, go over not very visible stile
in hedge. Cross field
diagonally and cross railway to stile. Cross another stile.
Cross field diagonally and cross railway again, keeping to
left of station. Descend bank to wooden gate then cross wild area to another wooden
gate. Cross next field
diagonally, climbing to stile at highest corner of field.
Turn right down lane and just before the valley
bottom take track on left through trees. On reaching asphalt track bear left across it and through
gate. Follow track
across fields, turning left at corner and after a while re-entering
woods through gate on right. Follow track for further half mile to lane.
Turn left then take track through barrier on
right. After a few
metres take footpath on right through hedge then diagonally across
field for half a mile into wood. Follow track downhill through wood, soon offering fine views
of North Downs on right. On emerging from wood head downhill diagonally across field
to hedge. Continue
through hedge, down steps and diagonally across field to lane.
Turn right and continue into
Hollingbourne. Turn right uphill at the crossroads and take a path
up the bank on the left just before the “National Speed Limit”
sign. Follow right hand edge of field to gate then bear left
steeply uphill to North Downs Way post. Turn left and follow NDW
until you re-enter the Woodland Trust’s Hucking Estate. Turn right,
leaving NDW which goes left, along broad track passing an old chalk
pit inside a fenced area. When track bears right, take path on left
then almost immediately go over stile on right. Follow track,
bearing left after 300m, to junction. Turn right and at sign take
path through gate on right back to car park.
Bought by the Woodland Trust in 1997, the farmland is being returned
to woodland and chalk grassland to encourage restoration of classic
Peacock butterfly at Hucking
Common blue butterfly at Hucking
Bredgar & Wormshill Light Railway
A train set to envy. More details
Attractive old houses and a pub, The Dirty
Habit, the name perhaps reflecting the state of dress of travellers
on the adjacent Pilgrims Way.
Our book of Ten
Favourite Walks in the Kent Countryside has routes for ten more
walks like this one.
Ramblers' volunteers in
Kent work tirelessly to ensure that our paths are as well protected
and maintained as possible. Of course we also organise led
walks but most of our members are independent walkers who simply
want to support our footpath work. Please join
us and become a supporter too. You need us and we really
If you find that the directions and map
for this walk are incorrect in any way, please report the problem to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Map based on Ordnance
Survey mapping released into the public domain under the OpenData