Kent Ramblers Walk 82



Support us

Contact Us

Path Problems

Harbledown and Dunkirk

Distance:  10.7 Miles (5 Hours)

OS Map:   Explorer 149 & 150 (Start at TR125581)

Click map to magnify and click again to magnify further

Start at Lower Harbledown, 2 miles west of Canterbury (Kent College Canterbury)

1 Set off with school on your right and immediately past school take path on right down to bridge and up through orchard to concrete farm track.  Turn right and at end of track continue across a field to gap in hedge; on other side join North Downs Way.  Turn right downhill and continue to road.

2 Turn left along road, over the A2 and take path through kissing gate on right.  Soon follow North Downs Way through gate on left.  At first junction just before information board and gate take waymarked path on right down through wood and across field of hops (the path should go straight across but currently there is a diversion to the right before turning left across the field) to a small bridge; cross and go up through orchard to waymark and bear left.  Follow hedgerow round to access road, then up over the A2 to Upper Harbledown.

3 Cross bridge and follow road to the T-junction, bearing right of small village hall at junction and take adjacent public footpath.  Follow path around back of village hall then climb steadily through woodland, after 900 metres or so bearing right and joining a broader track near a bend.  Turn left for 400 metres to a crossways and turn left along a broad stony track.  Follow for 1.5 miles (2.4 km) until path joins bridleway at T-junction (post with both yellow and blue roundels).

4 Turn left and continue for 750 metres to next T-junction where the bridleway goes left.  Turn right past wooden barrier along perimeter of Bossenden Farm then left at corner.  At junction of four paths, turn right along most level path and at fork bear left.  Follow track to road.

5 For Red Lion pub, go left.  To continue the walk turn right along road, take first left back over the A2 and then turn right along access road to Foresters Lodge Farm.

6 Amid farm buildings, take path on left between buildings along left hand edge of field.  Enter South Bishops Den Wood and at fork bear left.  Heading downhill cross a broader track and just as path bears left and starts to climb, go forward onto narrower path; if you find you are climbing steadily, you have missed the turn.   When you reach the edge of the wood at a T-junction with mesh fence ahead, turn left along the fence until you reach a stile.  Cross the field to far L-hand corner, go over stile and continue straight through a small copse, out into the orchards.  Keeping to the hedgerow climb to farm track and turn left.

7 Go downhill, through narrow strip of woodland at lowest point, immediately turn right and continue uphill along the hedgerow to narrow lane.  Go forward down lane and at fingerpost (finger missing at time of writing) turn left along byway to Denstead Lane.  Turn right up steep hill into Chartham Hatch.

8 Turn left past Village Hall and turn left into Bigbury Road.  Soon turn left along North Downs Way past playing fields to “No Mans Orchard”.  Continue to follow North Downs Way and soon rejoin outward route in opposite direction.  On reaching lane, turn left downhill, across A2 and uphill to your starting point.

Points of Interest

A  At Dunkirk the last armed uprising in England took place in 1838.  After a pitched battle with the army, the body of the rebel leader, William Courtenay, was displayed at The Red Lion.

B  No Man’s Orchard: the apple orchard has been left to grow naturally for the wild life to flourish with many old varieties of apple; woodcarvings are laid out amongst the trees.

Public transport: Bus No. 3 (Canterbury to Faversham)

In addition to the walking routes on our web site we have published three popular walking guides:

Guide to Tunbridge Wells Circular Walk and other walks in the area

Guide to the Kent Coast Path: Part 1, Camber to Ramsgate

Guide to Three River Valley Walks in West Kent: Darent Valley Path, Eden Valley Walk and Medway Valley Walk

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 need you.

Map contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database rights 2020.  Some paths on map are based on data provided by Kent County Council but do not constitute legal evidence of the line of a right of way.