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Polegate / Heathfield

[ Cycle routes The Avenue Verte London <> Paris ] [ The South Country ]
  • 16.4 km
  • famille Level Family

You join the celebrated Cuckoo Trail here, taking a recently renovated stretch of track that follows the former Cuckoo railway line. The route leads you through the pretty countryside of the Wealden district, with old villages and farms that are still operating, but which are still surrounded by fields divided by hedgerows. The Cuckoo Trail is much loved by local people.

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You can travel along greenways practically the whole way from Heathfield to Polegate, although there are brief stretches where you have to ride along a village lane. The surfaces along the route are well-surfaced on the whole, but be sure to have good tyres. There are many places to stop at along the whole route, plus there's the odd remarkable bridge to admire.


Alternative/Extra option

A well-signposted cycle path, part of NCN 21, leads from Polegate down to Eastbourne's seafront and the Sovereign Centre.


Lewes : 01273 483448

Tunbridge Wells : 01892 530 416


Railway lines

Pas de train beyond Polegate. The nearest stations: Crowborough, Eridge, Tunbridge Wells.


Not to be missed

  • Polegate
  • Hellingly 
  • Hellingly  to Horam
  • Hailsham 
  • Heathfield 


Close to

Michelam Priory



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The Cuckoo Trail                                                                                                    
This much-loved greenway was laid out in 1990 along the former Cuckoo Line railway which linked Tunbridge Wells to Polegate near Eastbourne. It takes cyclists across the rolling countryside of the Sussex Weald. It's very popular because it's such a safe route and it's well linked  by footpaths and other public rights of way to the villages close to which it passes. You'll spot a good number of outdoor works of art along the Cuckoo Trail, including an arch in the form of a Chinese pagoda, artistic gates made of wrought iron and numerous benches created from oaks that fell in the terribly destructive 1987 storm. Along the trail, you'll find many spots where you can stop to picnic, for example at the former railway station at Hellingly.  

Your reviews

  • Cuckoo Trail not shown on map - brambledown

    I was looking at the Polegate to Heathfield part of the Avenue Vert and the Cuckoo Trail is not marked on the map. This is one of the best bits.

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