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This walk through rolling landscape that surrounds Yalding starts Yalding Fen. Woodland, willow carr, ponds and traditional orchard all make up this patchwork of habitats and each is home to a variety of wildlife. Look out for grass snakes; listen out for a variety of birds and even cattle and sheep grazing the land.
Along the way you’ll catch sight of traces of Yalding’s history. Wandering over Yadling Bridge, you may not realize you are walking on a Scheduled Ancient Monument, but this 137 metre long bridge is the longest medieval bridge in Kent.
Enjoy views of Buston Manor on the route, owned by the de Burston Family between the 13th and 17th centuries.
Evidence of the area’s hopping history can be seen along Shingle Barn Road where you’ll see the Hoppers Huts. These houses, built in 1880, were for around 24 seasonal workers, yet they were often overcrowded.
Step by step guide
Turn right out of Yalding train station onto the road and across the tracks. After 100 metres turn left onto a narrow footpath. Follow this path over a field and into woodland with the train line on your left. After 400 metres turn left and cross the stile. Carefully cross the train tracks.
Follow the footpath through the site which takes you to the left of and around the pond. Turn left over a stile and through the orchard then out past the houses. At the road, turn right and walk over Twyford Bridge. Just after the bridge turn left and follow the footpath across the flood meadows known as The Lees. At Lees Road turn left and after approximately 150 metres turn left again and walking on the road, cross Yalding Bridge.
Continue straight on through the village, past the church and up to Yalding Tea Rooms. At the War Memorial turn right onto Vicarage Road. Turn immediately left onto the footpath which goes diagonally past the houses. At the road bear left then straight onto Mount Avenue. Follow the avenue around to the right and take the footpath at the end through woodland and follow it around to the left.
After 800 metres turn right onto Lughorse Road and follow the road uphill. Continue straight on then take the next footpath (not the byway) on the left next to the large oak tree. From here you'll start walking uphill through farmland leaving the village of Yalding behind you. At the tree line bear right and continue straight uphill through farmland.
When you reach the waymarker post half way up the hill, turn left onto the Greensand Way. This long distance path stretches across the sandstone ridge of Hampshire, Surrey and Kent for 108 miles.
After 350 metres you'll meet the byway. Turn right and continue uphill until reaching the lane (Shingle Barn Lane) then turn left onto it. Immediately on your left are the backs of the Hoppers Huts.
At the junction after the huts cross the road then turn left (Yalding Hill). After 200 metres turn right onto Small Profits. Follow this country lane for about 2km. From here you'll have some lovely views down across the Medway Valley.
When you meet the next lane (Hunt Street) cross over it and go straight into the field going downhill. After 250 metres the path turns left in front of the trees. Follow it for another 250 metres before turning right when opposite the houses. Walk across the field to the houses then cross track and take footpath diagonally downhill into Wateringbury. At the end of the track turn right and walk across Bow Bridge.
The end point of Wateringbury train station is just ahead on the right. Alternatively to return to Yalding train station, turn left and follow the lower Medway Valley Path past the marina then follow this for 5km back to Yalding. Turn right at Hampstead Marina in Yalding onto the road to head for the train station.