Boxing Day Walk: Devils Dyke

Devils Dyke

If you’re looking for a way to burn off the extra calories you consumed yesterday then head up to one of the most beautiful locations in Sussex for a Boxing Day walk.

John Constable once described the South Downs as “the grandest view in the world” and from Devils Dyke you can see as far as Ashdown Forest, Box Hill, the Hog’s Back and the Isle of Wight.

Follow the National Trust’s handy walking trail and don’t forget to look out for these interesting landmarks:

The Great Cableway

The concrete footings of two pylons sit on the top of the slopes to the left and right, as you descend into Devil’s Dyke. Once upon a time these supported Britain’s first cable car, which was built in 1894. The ride was a great attraction and took Victorian day-trippers across the 300 metre wide valley.

The funicular railway

The remains of the Victorian funicular railway station can be seen towards the end of the walk.

The Saddlescombe Donkey Wheel

This wooden well-house contains a large, broad wheel used for hundreds of years to raise drinking water from 150 feet below the downs. This large wheel was turned by a donkey or pony.

The Devil’s Graves

According to legend, the Devil and his wife are said to be buried at the bottom of the Dyke. Tradition has it that if you run backwards seven times around these humps, whilst holding your breath, the Devil will appear!

Saddlescombe Farm

A hidden hamlet in the South Downs, the farm has over 1,000 years of stories to tell and was once home to the Knights Templar.

 

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