Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer – a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam fifteen years ago, April 2005

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Virtual countryside walks are the only ones possible during the ongoing pandemic, so here’s a collection of 25 photos from a 2005 walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam Castle and back, skirting the Sussex/Kent borders.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

The walk was one of the many (and much-missed) urban75 walks that used to happen on a semi-regular basis.

For this sunny spring strut, we alighted at the substantial Italianate style station at Robertsbridge, which is about two hour’s train ride from Brixton.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Since I posted the original article about this walk in 2005, the Rother Valley Railway preservation society has started constructing a new separate station on the east side of Robertsbridge car park, and have rebuilt the line on to Northbridge Street.

The first train on this rebuilt section ran in September 2013 and long term plans are underway to rebuild the rest of the route eastwards to join up with the Kent and East Sussex Railway, and restore services along the line (steam trains already run on another section of the line, between Tenterden Town and Bodiam, 3½ miles from Robertsbridge).

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

This fabulous 1894 wooden signal box is still in use.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Scarecrow with paper handbag.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Footpaths galore.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Rusted-over farming thingamabob.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Delicious pints of Harvey’s Sussex best bitter were very well received.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

The Kent and Sussex landscapes are peppered with the distinctive outlines of Oast Houses, although the decline of the hops trade saw most of them being converted into private houses.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

My kind of lane.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Waiting for the crop.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Inquisitive (and super cute) lamb.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

The majestic sight of Bodiam Castle, built in 1385 by Sir Edward Dalyngrigge (try saying that after a few pints) as a defence against attacks from France, after nearby Rye and Winchelsea had both been sacked and burned eight years previously.

With Bodiam being only 14 miles upstream from Winchelsea on the river Rother, the town was also vulnerable to feisty raiding parties.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

A look inside the castle.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Ye Olde tagging.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Stone stairway to the roof.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Well, well, well.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Looking over the moat and entrance.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

A storm a-coming.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Russian-style bootfair.

Castle, sheep, signalbox and beer - a photo walk from Robertsbridge to Bodiam, April 2005

Find out more about the walk