Sevenoaks Running Day
Sunday May 13th 2018
Prepared by Ian Smith, 17th May 2018.
Part 3: 413: Sevenoaks to Ide Hill and backAs I was scheduled to miss this bus I just had time to grab a quick photo before boarding and departing. Peter Aves was driving the bus once again. Having moved north to Leeds after retiring, he had sold the bus on, but was glad to take a turn off organising the Bus Station to get behind the wheel again.
We set off. Leaving the bus station, we passed newly-preserved DLA23, still in its Arriva London trainer livery.
We turned south along Sevenoaks High Street, along past the lodge of Knole Park and Sevenoaks School, then turned up Solefields Road. No public schools at the top now, just a private school. We turned onto narrow Ashgrove Road, and followed it along to Cross Keys. No bus route here these days either. At Cross Keys we turned left onto wider Oak Lane, nowadays the 404 route between Edenbridge, Sevenoaks and Plaxtol. We followed it past the scattered houses (mansions?) through the woods, up to meet the roadbridge over the Sevenoaks by-pass. We turned onto Gracious Lane Bridge and continued along White House Road towards Bayley's Hill. More scattered houses among the forest trees. At the fork we did not descend left, but kept right, onto Rycroft Lane, then forked left on the very narrow road through the woods. Traffic was sparse, fortunately, as the single track road has few passing places. Eventually we joined a wider lane, and continued, meeting the main Bessels Green Road just short of Wheatsheaf Hill. Here we came across cyclists heading for Ide Hill Village Hall, and followed some down the hill very cautiously.
The blinds were tweaked to show Sevenoaks instead of Ide Hill, and we reboarded. We carefully made our way down and round past the cyclists to the crossroads, and turned left Wheatsheaf Hill. A right fork took us back into the woods, and an un-signposted fork took us right along the narrow lane to Bayleys Hill. Arrival there was signalled by the usual glorious red rhododendron. We turned left and gently made our way east.
At a safe point, where we could be seen and passed if necessary a pause was made, and photograhs were taken. Most were of the bus in the woodlands, some were of the glorious bluebells.
We turned right at Cross Keys for the erstwhile school run via West Heath and Solefields Road, and rumbled down to Sevenoaks School. Left took us along the High Street, and a right fork led us on to the Bus Station. There I was in time for my next ride, on the 471..
Ian's Bus-stop One Two Three Four Five Six