John’s “Penny” Farthing route
Overview – Distance: 65 km, Climbing: 640 m
Coffee Stop – Various in Reigate
Having driven up Farthing Downs, John decided it would be nice to cycle there to take in the views and the history.
The route involves a lot of climbing and steep descents. Head out to Banstead via Ewell. Descend Chipstead Valley to Coulsdon. Pass under the A23 and two railway bridges and filter right up Farthing Downs.
The return route is via Merstham, Reigate and Betchworth. The route is 40 miles in total.
Neolithic origins – The beginnings of the pastoral landscape we know today as Farthing Downs very likely began when, over 2000 years ago, visitors brought animals with them to graze the meadows within the woodland. An ancient trackway still exists today which predates the Celtic field boundaries created by farmers on the Downs 2000 years ago. The trackway was used by the Neolithic visitors. Neolithic pottery and archaeology has been found on the Downs and in nearby gardens and is evidence of early human occupation of the Downs.
Link to Friends of Farthing Downs & Happy Valley https://www.friendsoffarthingdowns.co.uk/