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The Pheasant and Reigate Heath

There are currently 3 comments and 2 photos online for this walk.

The Pheasant and Reigate Heath
Author: Pub Walker, Published: 09 Dec 2015 Walk rating : Rating:star1 The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walkstar1 The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walkstar1 The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walkstar1 The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walkstar0 The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walk
Surrey, Buckland
Walk Type: Woodland
The Pheasant and Reigate Heath
Length: 3 miles,  Difficulty: boot The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walk boot The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walk
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0002_sunny_intervals The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walkToday's weather
12 °C, Partly cloudy, Wind: 11 mph W
Next few days: Hover over icon for more info.
0002_sunny_intervals The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walk 0013_sleet_showers The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walk 0001_sunny The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walk 0001_sunny The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walk 0007_fog The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walk

A 3 mile circular pub walk from the Pheasant at Buckland, near Reigate in Surrey. The Pheasant is a classic old coaching inn, providing relaxed comfortable surroundings for refreshments before or after your walk. The walking route explores the adjoining Reigate Heath, a wonderful section of mixed woodland and heath, taking in a windmill and a stream which is home to a monstrous creature of legend.

The walking route includes just a few climbs and descents. There are no stiles, steps or gates on route, but the path surfaces can be very sandy, deeply rutted or muddy in parts and they are also very narrow at times. The heath is home to a golf course and the route crosses fairways a few times so please show respect for the golfers by allowing them to play their shots before you cross and also look out for any stray flying golf balls. Approximate time 1 to 1.5 hours.

The Pheasant is located on the main A25 road, between Buckland and Reigate in Surrey. The pub has its own large car park or, if you are coming by bus, there is a bus stop directly outside the pub. For help planning your journey by public transport visit http://journeys.travelsmartsurrey.info. Approximate post code RH3 7BG.

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Walk Sections

Start to Reigate Heath
Start to Reigate Heath

Start point: 51.2432 lat, -0.2404 long
End point: 51.2406 lat, -0.2307 long

Leave the car park via the vehicle entrance and turn right along the A25 pavement, passing in front of The Pheasant. Continue past two further properties and then fork right down the tarmac access lane, signed as a public footpath. Follow the lane past a handful of cottages on your right and, immediately before Yaverland Cottage, turn right to join a grass footpath.

Continue through an old gateway and keep ahead along the right-hand edge of an open meadow. In the far corner, follow the path over a stream to reach a fingerpost marking a junction of footpaths at the edge of the next large meadow. Take the path diagonally left (at about 11 o’clock) and continue on this path as it leads you alongside a fence and hedge boundary on the left. After about 150 yards, the path dog-legs left (out of the meadow) and then right, to become a fenced track along the edge of woodland.

Follow this pretty path with a beautiful section of old estate land on the right, now used as horse paddocks. The path skirts alongside the A25 (on your left) and then reaches a crossroads with a stone access lane. Go straight ahead on the narrow path through a section of scrub, the beginnings of Reigate Heath.

Reigate Heath to Flanchford Road
Reigate Heath to Flanchford Road

Start point: 51.2406 lat, -0.2307 long
End point: 51.2391 lat, -0.2234 long

Follow the narrow path winding ahead, going straight ahead at the crossroads with the next sandy access track. The path begins to climb and leads you to a hillock topped with two large pine trees. Skirt around the right-hand edge of the hillock and then turn left along the obvious heath path. Follow this path ahead to reach a waymarker post at a junction of paths.

Reigate Heath forms part of the manorial waste of the Manor of Reigate, and was bequeathed to the people of the town by Lady Henry Somerset when she died in 1921. The heath is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest. It is the largest heath in East Surrey, and is a rare and valuable habitat. The heath is home to seven Bronze Age barrows, or burial grounds, providing the earliest evidence of man’s occupation of the area, around 3,000 years ago.

Go straight ahead and just a few yards later, at the next minor crossroads, turn left. Follow this path back towards the A25 (ignoring any smaller paths to the sides). Within a section of oak trees, the path swings right to run parallel with the A25 across to your left. Eventually you will emerge out to the edge of the large open green sports field within the heath.

Walk at about 2 o’clock across the field, heading for the only small detached house within the row of terraced cottages ahead. As you reach the road, Flanchford Road, cross over with care to reach the pavement directly in front of the cottages.

Flanchford Road to Windmill
Flanchford Road to Windmill

Start point: 51.2391 lat, -0.2234 long
End point: 51.2357 lat, -0.2334 long

Turn right along the pavement, with the colourful row of cottages running on your left. Where the pavement ends, ignore the track to the church on the left. Instead, keep ahead along the grass verge for 30 yards and then fork left onto the signed public bridleway. This sandy path leads you past a car park on your right and on through this southern section of Reigate Heath.

As you emerge from the trees you will come to the edge of a golf fairway. NOTE: Please show respect for the golfers by allowing them to play their shots before you cross and watch out for any stray flying golf balls. Stay on the sandy track across the fairway and then bear right along the access track to reach a T-junction opposite a pretty brick and flint house, The Old School House.

Turn right for a few paces and, immediately after the house, turn left. Follow this sandy path through a section of trees and you will emerge to a junction with the access lane for The White House (you will see this property on your left). Turn right along the access lane (which crosses another golf fairway so follow the same advice) and you will emerge to a junction with Flanchford Road.

Cross straight over but do NOT take the obvious sandy track ahead. Instead take the narrower grass path at about 2 o’clock (signed as a public footpath and the Greensand Way). Follow this path steadily uphill through the bracken, back into the northern section of Reigate Heath. At the top, you will emerge to a junction with a tarmac access lane. Turn left to reach the golf club car park, with the club house to the right and the windmill directly behind this.

Windmill to Shag Brook
Windmill to Shag Brook

Start point: 51.2357 lat, -0.2334 long
End point: 51.2369 lat, -0.2423 long

The existing windmill dates from 1765 and is built on Galley Hill, so called because it was the site of a gallows where highwaymen and other convicted criminals were hanged. The mill worked for about 100 years, and in 1880 was converted to a chapel. Services are still held here regularly and it is said to be the only windmill in the world which is a consecrated church.

Walk forward to a point just beyond the buildings on your right. Take time to enjoy the views here, which on a clear day stretch for miles. NOTE: The next few hundred yards of the route lead you across more golf fairways so please keep your eyes peeled to keep yourself safe. Keep ahead along the access track for a few more paces. Immediately after the grass island within the parking area, turn right to reach the next waymarker post, set within the gorse bushes.

Follow this path downhill between the gorse and heather. At the bottom of the slope you’ll emerge to the edge of a wide fairway. When it is safe to do so, cross over heading for the cream cottage opposite. Once you reach the access lane in front of the cottage, it’s worth turning back to enjoy the view of the pretty windmill sitting high on the heather-clad hill.

Take the track running along the left-hand side of the cream cottage. Pass by the single metal bollard and continue ahead between hedgerows (ignoring the path off to the right) with a large open meadow across the fence to your right. Pass through an old gateway and continue on the obvious grass track through the field. At the far side you will come to a T-junction with a small stream, Shag Brook, ahead.

Shag Brook to End
Shag Brook to End

Start point: 51.2369 lat, -0.2423 long
End point: 51.2433 lat, -0.2405 long

Shag Brook rises from a spring at the foot of the North Downs and usually runs crystal clear. It is also home to a famous legendary horse, the Buckland Shag. The Buckland Shag was a monstrous horse which lived in the stream. Actually, some writers say the Shag was a gorilla, but a horse is the commonly accepted version. This beast would drag travellers from the nearby coaching road and devour them on the Shag Stone, a large boulder in the brook with a vein of blood running through it. The vein was in fact a harmless seam of iron ore – but let’s not spoil the tale! The local parson, Willoughby Bertie, had the Shag Stone removed from the brook in 1757 and it was transported and thrown from a cliff in Devon. The Buckland Shag then disappeared from local folklore. In the 1980s the legend was reborn through the Buckland Shag Morris Men, a troop of Morris dancers that perform locally.

Turn right along the rocky track and follow it through the belt of trees and out (past a disused kissing gate) to reach the corner of a large rough meadow. Turn left and follow the path running alongside the left-hand tree line. After about 500 yards you will come to a fingerpost on your left, which you should recognise from the outward leg.

From this point you will be retracing your steps back to the pub. To do this, turn left over the stream and follow the path along the left-hand edge of the smaller meadow. At the far side, continue ahead on the grass path to reach the T-junction alongside Yaverland Cottage. Turn left along the access lane and follow it out to the junction with the A25. Keep left and continue for just a short distance to reach The Pheasant for some well-earned hospitality.

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network The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walk Original GPX source file

Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2015 by the author pubwalker and may not be reproduced without permission.


3 comments for "The Pheasant and Reigate Heath"

Attempted this walk today with my trusted Tramper all terrain mobility scooter. There were a couple of places where we couldn't get by. The first was the path leading from the fingerpost mentioned at the beginning of the walk. Unfortunately, this path was rutted in such a way that it forced the tramper into the fence due to the camber. We retraced our steps back to the fingerpost and did the walk in reverse (this is where the app is so brilliant as we were able to see if we were still on the route).

The second impassable place was just before the car park on Flanchford Road, as the path was too narrow with high banks either side.. We were able to bypass by going through the wood instead - just a small detour.

The last section (in our reversed walk) between points 2 and 1, we went onto the A25 for just a few minutes to get back to the Pub. A very enjoyable walk.

By Jules19 on 22 Aug 2016

Alan Parker: We decided to do the Pheasant and Reigate Heath walk yesterday and although it was a bit of a gloomy day, it was otherwise a pleasant walk. The Heath should look awesome in a couple of weeks time as the Heather is starting to flower.

By Facebook on 19 Sep 2016

In the directions we are told to turn right before a Yaverland Cottage. This appears to have changed name to Windmill View. The walk is most enjoyable. From Scottie. 24-10-2016

By Scottie on 24 Oct 2016

The information in this guide has been provided in good faith and is intended only as a guide, not a statement of fact. You are advised to check the accuracy of the information provided and should not use this guide for navigational directions nor should you rely on the accuracy of the weather forecast. You are advised to take appropriate clothing, footwear, equipment and navigational materials with you according to the current and possible weather and nature of the terrain. Always follow the country code and follow any additional warnings or instructions that may be available. Some walks may be very strenuous and you are advised to seek medical advice if you have any doubts as to your capability to complete the walk.

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2 gallery images for "The Pheasant and Reigate Heath"

5064_0pubwalker1443206079 The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walk Image by: Pub Walker
Uploaded: 25 Sep 2015
Across the sports field to the detached house.
5064_1pubwalker1443206079 The Pheasant and Reigate Heath Pub walk Image by: Pub Walker
Uploaded: 25 Sep 2015

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