Darent Days 5 – Summary
Saturday 2nd July 2016 10:45am EnBro Public Walk
9.8 miles circular from Otford station eastwards to Lower St Clere lake (the easternmost source). Return via the Honeypot Stream, Chequers Inn (lunch stop), Kemsing station, and Greatness waterrnill and quarry to Otford (Heritage Centre and tea shops). (Alternatively train back from Kemsing after 4.4 miles; 5.4 miles from Kemsing station to end).
Saturday 9th July 2016 10:45am EnBro Public Walk
Repeat of walk on 2nd July.
If you prefer a paper copy of the walk as included in the information pack then download and print the pdf below.
Meet: 10.45am at Otford station (Ordnance Survey map reference TQ532594).
Access: Saturday rail services: Blackfriars* 09:42 Victoria 09:52 Bromley S. 10:14 Bromley S. 10:09 Swanley 10:26 Swanley 10:20 Otford 10:37 Otford 10:28
* This Thameslink service calls at all stations via Catford, Bromley South and Swanley.
Maps: Ordnance Survey 1:25 000 scale Explorer Sheet 147; 1:50 000 scale Landranger 188.
Outline route: Easterly though Kemsing and Heaverham to Lower St. Clere lake (the easternmost source) – Honeypot stream – Chequers Inn (lunch stop) – Kemsing station – Greatness Quarry- Otford (opportunity to visit Heritage Centre/charity tea shop) – station (9.8 miles).
Terrain: Footpaths and road walking, some without pavements. No hills, but potentially wet and muddy in parts.
Early Finish option: At Kemsing station after 4.4 miles.
Late start option: From Kemsing station to end (5.4 miles).
Detailed route description: From the southbound platform of the station go up the ramp or steps, take a footpath for 180m to the road, cross it, and go right for a few metres before turning left along the path.
(Alternatively, from the station entrance go half left across the car park to the exit, then left (S) along a metalled footpath for 200m. Turn left, cross the rail tracks, and after 60m cross a residential road.)
After 700m continue eastwards along Dynes Road and West End for 1500m to reach the centre of Kemsing, with St Edith’s Well (right) and public conveniences (left). Continue eastwards along Heaverham Road. (Take care – no pavement.) After 1200m, at 60m short of the end of Cotmans Ash Lane (left), fork right along a footpath for 500m, then fork left to the picturesque village of Heaverham. (Alternatively, continue on the road to Heaverham.)
Bear right down Watery Lane to the Chequers Inn and just after, turn left on a footpath heading east. After 500m cross a stream on your right and bear left along the field edge. 70m further on, cross a footbridge over the Honeypot Stream, then the footpath meets a track leading to Lower St Clere (left). A few metres along this track, a grassy (muddy) track forks right under trees to a white stone folly, The Octagon, beside the lake at TQ578587. This is the source of the Honeypot Stream.
Follow the footpath back to the Chequers Inn (picnic or pub lunch stop).
Head south down Watery Lane (no pavement), with a small stream soon alongside. After going under the M26 and railway bridges, turn right at Honeypot Lane. At this point the Honeypot Stream flows past a water treatment works, then parallel to Honeypot Lane. Continue west to Kemsing station (early finish option, 4.4 miles).
Nearly 500m further along the lane, turn right over a stile, and carefully cross the railway lines. Then go over another stile onto a footpath, and turn left alongside the railway for 120m. Fork right (NW) through Cockneys Wood and exit via the kissing gate (not the stile) to follow the path to the M26. Turn left alongside the M26 to a kissing gate, turn left again for few yards, then right up some steps to St Edith’s Road. Turn right, cross over the motorway, and continue 400m to Park Lane, where you turn left (SW) and follow down to the end. Go through a kissing gate and follow the track to cross the M26 by a bridge.
Continue a further 250m along the footpath, going over a stile and through a kissing gate, to reach the Honeypot Stream. Do not cross footbridge over the stream, but turn right (West) to follow a path beside the stream for 250m. Then turn left (S), by a metal gate, to cross the stream, and go through a kissing gate. Fork left (south), and after 130m go over a stile, carefully cross the railway lines, climb up 16 steps and go over another stile, then continue SW for nearly 300m to a road (Childsbridge Lane). Turn left along the road for 170m, cross it and turn right via Copse Bank, then walk along a footpath SW for 900m to the A25.
Turn right for 500m to a mill pond. Turn right down Mill Lane, passing the former silk mill (left) now a housing development. After 300m, where Mill Lane turns left, follow the footpath by the entrance to 4th Sevenoaks Scout H.Q. At the end turn left ahead up Farm Lane. Where Farm Lane joins Watercress Drive, there is a formidable steel fence.
Go through the steel wicket gate, indicated by the cast iron finger post, and turn right. You are now following a footpath through a working quarry. The owners have clearly marked the path with nameplated archways. At several points the path is crossed by quarry trackways – look out for moving quarry vehicles before crossing. Continue to follow the footpath signs northwards, with large flooded quarry workings on both sides (hidden behind the spoil heaps). After nearly 1000m cross the railway by a footbridge. Cross the Honeypot Stream and continue N for 130m to a hedgerow and ditch, where turn left and follow them for 200m to cross another ditch (this is a very boggy area). Head NW for 350m to a bridge over the M26. Turn left (West) along a track under a rail bridge to converted oast houses. Continue NNW along a footpath to a residential road. Where the road bears left after 250m, continue NNW along a footpath for 250m to the churchyard.
(To visit the village centre turn left past the Church and bear right to the roundabout and duck pond, which is unique in being designated a listed building. Further along the High Street on the left are a charity teashop, open 10:00 – 16:00 weekdays, 10:00 – 17:00 Saturdays, and the Heritage Centre. open 9:00 – 12:00 weekdays, 14:30 – 16:30 at weekends.)
Otherwise turn right (E) along a footpath for 400m to the northbound platform of Oxted station.
Return: Saturday rail services: Otford* 16:07 Bickley 16:27 Bromley S. 16:29 Bromley S. 16:39 Blackfriars 17:04 Victoria 16:51
*Half-hourly Thameslink service calling at all stations via Swanley, Bromley South and Catford.