BOAT: Hoth Lane

Location: Cowford Bridge Ln, Rotherfield, East Sussex TN6, UK
  • Overall Rating: 3
  • Location: Great Danegate, East Sussex.
  • OS Explorer Map 135, 'Ashdown Forest'.
  • Starting OS Grid Reference: TQ565318
  • Starting GPS Co-ordinates: N51 06' 40" E000 23' 20"
  • Finishing OS Grid Reference: TQ566329
  • Finishing GPS Co-ordinates: N51 07' 40" E000 23' 40"
  • To see: Saxonbury, Spa Valley Railway, RSPB Broadwater WarrenCuckoo Line.
  • ALWAYS follow the Greenlane Code!

I have entitled this otherwise un-named byway as Hoth Lane after the wood and farm of the same name which it passes (plus I love Star Wars), but if anybody knows of the 'real' name please comment below.

We started at the southern end, leaving Cowford Bridge Lane through the railway sleeper width restriction designed to stop evil scum fly tipping. The surface here is of leaf mould over a sandy loam. The byway heads staright down Entry Hill for a few yards before turning to the east where a public footpath diverges. Just after the bend, as throughout this green lane, the foliage is a little tight but by no means dramatically so and the odd scratch may or may not feature on the paintwork from the saplings that line the lane.

Slightly further down the descent the lane again turns abruptly to the west. It's quite a sharp bend but has room enough for a Defender 110' to get around in one go. The green lane shallows out and passes a recently cleared area of woodland to the west, and with the regrowth of silver birch it's pretty nice to look at! Soon the greenlaner encounters a slight incline out of the valley as the trail plunges briefly back into Entryhill Wood before following the field boundaries of Hoth Farm, which soon passes by to the west. On passing the farm the lane surface changes to compacted gravel and clay, and remains that way until the byway ends on a country lane called Danegate.

One final word: it's worth driving this lane from south to north. Most times I've passed the southern entry to this lane, unthinking fools have parked across the entrance to the lane, which really helps. Check it's clear before you drive the entire length of it!

For those looking for a whole day out, an neolithic hill fort called Saxonbury, with it's much later folly, lies just to the east along Danegate. The Spa Valley Steam Railway terminates at Eridge station, just to the west, and RSPB Broadwater Warren nature reserve is well worth a walk up to the north-west. Finally, the former route of the Cuckoo Line can be found just to the west of the lane: this is where it merged with the Wealden Line at Redgate Mill Junction. Most of the trackbed is private land, however.

This is East Sussex County Council's Byway Rotherfield 45.

The southern entrance. Yeah, thanks for that.

View Hoth Lane in a larger map

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