Day of celebration on the Cuckoo Trail

Cuckoo Trail SUS-170620-231605008
Cuckoo Trail SUS-170620-231605008

Celebrate Wealden’s most popular green trail on Saturday May 12 and make the most of fitness and fun.

The Cuckoo Trail was originally a railway line, which opened in 1880, connecting London to the South Coast.

In was closed as part of the Beeching cuts in 1965 and eventually became a public right of way thanks to the efforts of Wealden District Council and East Sussex County Council.

It now gives enjoyment to 250,000 visitors each year.

Healthy Wealden, Heathfield Cycle Club and Beat the Streets have organised a day of action on the Cuckoo Trail.

These include Health Walks, Family Cycle Rides and a Secret Stone Hunt. There’s also a selfie competition for the best photo of yourself taking part in our Cuckoo Trail Celebration activities.

The council will also be challenging everyone to walk, cycle or run 100 miles of the Cuckoo Trail for a Cuckoo Trail Challenge.

“The Cuckoo Trail is such a splendid green asset, right in the heart of Wealden,” said Councillor Claire Dowling, Cabinet member for Public Health and Community Safety.

“It’s a safe place for the whole family to exercise with car parks and easy access points all along the 14 miles of public right of way running from Heathfield to Hampden Park.

“As part of the Cuckoo Trail Challenge, we have installed new marker posts every mile featuring our new Cuckoo Trail Challenge logo, so you can count how many miles you walk, ride or run until your tally reaches 100. Keep your own Cuckoo Trail Challenge log, or go online to our Healthy Wealden website. Let us know when you’ve logged 100 miles and we will send you a free certificate.”

The line-up of events for the Cuckoo Trail Celebrations on May 12 is as follows:

• 11am-noon Horam Health Walk: a two mile stroll suitable for all the family. Starts Old Horam Station. Car parking at Hillside Drive then follow Cuckoo Trail signs to Old Horam Station platform. Please arrive 10 minutes before walk commences

• Noon-1pm Hailsham Secret Stones Hunt: Find the secret stones. Meet South Road Car Park, Hailsham.

• 2pm-3pm Heathfield Family Cycle Ride: Meet Newnham Way Car Park. Bring your own bike. Young people under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Please wear a helmet and arrive 10 minutes before cycle ride commences.

• 2pm-4pm Heathfield: Sign up to Beat the Streets and Cuckoo Trail Challenge. Newnham Way Car Park.

• 3pm –4pm Heathfield Health Walk: a two mile walk suitable for all the family. Meet Newnham Way car park. Please arrive 10 minutes before walk commences.

Take a selfie of yourself taking part in any of the above events and you could win a free Fitbit.

Send your selfies to communitydevelopment @wealden.gov.uk by midnight on Sunday May 13 to enter.

The council will publish them on the Wealden Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/wealden/ and invite people to vote for their favourite.

There will be opportunities at the Cuckoo Trail Celebrations to sign-up for East Sussex County Council’s Beat the Streets physical activity game that takes place from June 6 until July 25 across the County.

The Healthy Wealden website, www.healthywealden.co.uk provides many more suggestions for activities for the summer across Wealden and includes a direct link to the daily timetables at our Freedom Leisure Centres in Crowborough, Heathfield, Hailsham and Uckfield.

A free pamphlet has been produced to accompany the Cuckoo Challenge which includes a map, details of access and public transport, as well as interesting facts about the places along the trail and the wildlife than can be seen.

The Cuckoo Trail Celebrations are being organised by Wealden District Council’s Healthy Wealden initiative, Heathfield Cycling Club and Beat the Streets. For more information email: communitydevlopment@wealden.gov.uk .