If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man.
Mark Twain

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This walk starts on The Green, at Westerham (click here for directions) and goes to Chartwell via Tower Wood, returning via Hosey Common.  Some of the walk is on designated Public Rights of Way, some is on Registered Common Land and some is on permissive paths on the Squerryes Estate.  The permissive paths cannot be guaranteed to be open, although they usually are.  The walk is generally uphill to Chartwell, as Chartwell is just to the south of the Greensand Ridge.  There is a steep downhill stretch just before reaching Chartwell.  The return route takes a gentler climb back to the top of the Greensand Ridge.  Before doing this walk, remember to check the Chartwell website for opening times (see Related Items).  From 10 March 2012, the restaurant and shop at Chartwell are open seven days a week for most of the year even when the house is closed.

  • Cross the A25 to the south side, turn right and walk through to the Market Square.  Go through the arch of the Kings Arms hotel and walk down into the car park.  Turn right into the enclosed footpath (SR348).  When you reach the road at the end (Lodge Lane) turn right, then left, across it and up the steps continuing between the houses.  Pass Rose Cottage on your right and walk through Back Meadow, down the hill past the entrance to Redwoods until you reach another road (Mill Lane).
  • Turn left and walk to the end, bearing right then left past Park Cottage.  Ignore the path to your right which goes uphill.  Cross the stile in front of you and continue straight ahead with the lakes on your left.  Immediately before the first stile, bear left and downhill to a stile  (The other, longer, walk to Chartwell does not turn left but goes straight ahead at this point).  Cross the stile and the bridge beyond and walk straight ahead.  There may be cattle on the bridge and in this field.  Continue ahead with a grassy slope on your left and Tower Wood on your right, until you reach a metal kissing gate in the corner of the field.
  • Pass through the gate and turn sharp right up a steep bank to a track running from left to right.  Turn right onto this track and follow it as it curves left, then right, and finally runs straight uphill through Tower Wood.  Walk up the hill until you reach the point where paths cross at right-angles and there is a ruined stone tower in the middle of the crossing.  Take the path straight ahead and follow it as it curves left then right until it finally reaches a road (B2026, Hosey Hill).
  • Cross the road and enter the footpath straight ahead (SR384), following it until you reach a path crossing.  Turn right onto this path (SR383) and follow it until you reach a large rock (Old Josh's Stone) half buried in the ground to the right of the path.

  • The path bears to the left of the rock and then forks.  The right fork goes downhill and the left fork bears away into the trees.  Take the left fork.  When you reach a junction, turn right and follow the path as it bears left before reaching a lane (Hosey Common Lane).
  • Turn left and walk along the lane for a few yards until you come to a footpath leading off to the right.  Follow this path into the woods (SR382), ignoring the paths off to the right and then left, and continue downhill until you reach a path crossing.  Turn right and follow this path uphill, meandering through the trees until you reach a broad track running from left to right.  Turn right onto this track (SR375) and follow it back to Hosey Common Lane.  Turn left onto the road and walk for about 200 yards to the first entrance on the right.
  • Cross the stile, or duck under the barrier, to enter the grounds of Chartwell.  Turn right and walk back parallel with the lane, following the path as it curves left and steeply downhill.  Ignore the path to your left and continue until you reach a field gate on your left with a small gate next to it.
  • Once through the gate you are in the Chartwell picnic field.  Walk diagonally downhill to your right and pass through a gate into the overflow car park, then across this to exit into the main car park.  The Chartwell restaurant is on the far side of the car park, with the shop and toilets to the left of it.
  • To return to the town (starting from the restaurant verandah) walk along the vehicle lane away from the restaurant, with the main car park to your right and the fence to your left.  At the end of the car park, walk up the grassy bank and exit through the vehicle entrance.  Turn right onto the road and follow it until it bears sharply to the left.  A Bridleway leads off to the right of the chevron sign and a Footpath leads straight ahead to the left of it.  Take the footpath and follow it uphill until you reach Old Josh's Stone.
  • Turn right and follow the same path you used before.  Turn left onto Hosey Common Lane, and right off it, and walk along the same path as before.  This time, just before the path starts to descend, take the path off to the left which leads downhill to join another path at the bottom.  Turn left onto this (SR381) and follow it until you emerge into a parking area in front of some school buildings which have been converted into houses.
  • Walk straight ahead across the parking area to the road (B2026, Hosey Hill) and walk downhill towards the town centre.  About 200 yards down the hill, cross the road and enter a footpath (SR349) running off to the left.  Continue along this path until it emerges through a squeeze stile into a field.  From this point three paths radiate.  One runs across the field towards three oak trees (SR349), one runs off to the right along the fence (SR352) and a third runs out at an angle between the other two (SR351).  Follow this path to a stile in a fence at the top of a slope.

  • Cross the stile and follow the path downhill until it reaches a wooden kissing gate in the fence at the bottom (the kissing gate will not be visible until you are fairly close to it).  Go through the kissing gate into the enclosed path and follow it back to Westerham Green.