Royal Tunbridge Wells - Rusthall - Royal Tunbridge Wells

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This walk was originally compiled by Alan and Janet Love, sadly both are no longer with us. Alison Gilbert has kindly offered to take them over. Alison and Walkingworld would like all these excellent walks to remain as a continuing tribute to Alan and Janet.


Tunbridge Wells was founded on its now famous spa waters and visited by the nobility of the day. The Wells season ran on similar lines to that of Bath and was presided over by Beau Nash. With the passing of the years, elegant buildings of good design by Decimus Burton were erected, grounds and parks laid out and from being a modest country place the Wells became a rather aristocratic town. Even today, despite noise pollution and the modern pace of life, a slight air of genteel elegance still clings. Royal Tunbridge Wells (RTW) has excellent shopping facilities both on the Pantiles and along the old High Street and up to the modern Victoria Centre and its pedestrian precinct. There is a plethora of eateries, coffee shops and other food establishments, both on the Pantiles and throughout the town. Toilet facilities are available at the start of the walk at the west end of the Pantiles, near to the car park which is adjacent to The auction hall regularly featured on the TV programme 'Flog It'.

Our walk criss-crosses RTW Common, a wonderful feature of the town; on most days children and / or adults can be seen climbing on Wellington Rocks, a large sandstone outcrop, a feature on this walk. As we walk along above Happy Valley there are seats placed at regular intervals for those wishing to stop and admire the views, or even to picnic. We cross Rusthall Common which follows on from RTW and has its own charm. From there we descend to picturesque old cottages at Apsley Street and follow round and between cottages and high sandstone outcrops to reach Toad Rock and the aptly named Toad Rock Retreat public house, which is ideally placed for a refreshment stop.

We continue our walk by crossing to the opposite side of Harmony Street, turning right and taking the rising path on the left. We descend and cross a valley housing a high rock formation beloved of climbers, some of whom you may see when passing. We climb out of the valley and walk the pavements back to the corner of RTW Common where we proceed back to our starting point.

England - South England - Kent - Town or city

Features

Ancient Monument, Birds, Butterflies, Cafe, Church, Flowers, Food Shop, Gift Shop, Great Views, Museum, Pub, Public Transport, Restaurant
25/07/2010 - Claire Snook

A nice little pub with a wonderfull view of the toad was a welcome break on this walk. http://toadrockretreat.weebly.com/

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