Of course, I could easily get to Balcombe Lake via the village, but that would mean having to return along the same path. I don’t like going back over the same paths if I can help it. Wherever possible, I will walk a round-trip. Besides, the so-called downed bridge wasn’t that much of a deal. So, I headed back to the collapsed boardwalk.
Carcass of a tree trunk heavily laden with moss
The boardwalk is unusually long. Just before the end of it, I discovered that it had collapsed at a second point. This section was not so easy to cross. The boards had come away and were lying at a precarious angle across the stream. The stream is too deep to wade across without getting my feet wet. Besides, I had no idea how deep the silt is.
I examined the broken section for weaknesses. It had lodged itself securely on both banks. However, the angle at which it was lying was acute. Despite this, I felt confident of being able to cross it, with care. Making sure that my mobile was safe and secure upon my person, I carefully crept across.
I climbed the makeshift steps. From this point, I then had a fairly easy time of it.
I continued along the footpath through the woods.
There is a succession of boardwalks along the route.
Very soon the footpath reached the edge of the lake.
I stopped and chatted to a couple of anglers for a while.
I then continued to the southern end of the lake. Here, a sluice allows water to drain from the lake. The flow of water continues on and eventually empties into Ardingly Reservoir.
I then crossed a field
and picked up a shaded footpath
to Balcombe Cricket Club.
Children were playing cricket. I walked to the pavilion and enquired as to whether refreshments were available. Unfortunately not. I mentioned that I thought it a shame as I would have been quite happy to just sit and watch the cricket with a cup of tea for a while. The chap I spoke to concurred.
Instead, knowing that the village boasted a tea room, I continued on. I walked on pass a lovely red brick house called Garden House.
The house has a commanding view out towards Alder and Sedgy Woods between Balcombe Lake and Ardingly Reservoir.
Around the corner, I found myself in the village.
The Half Moon Inn
I found the tea rooms in no time. A nice welcoming place, it is more like a café. There is a good selection of proper cooked meals. Still, I had what I was after, a cream tea.
Refreshed, I headed home, passing a Tudor house that no-one seemed to know much about, other than the fact that it is obviously the oldest building in the village.
At the edge of the village there sits an old park bench.
Horse Chestnut and Hawthorn in bloom
Horse Chestnut blossom
A carpet of Oxeye Daisies
Once home, I grabbed my water butt and headed for the church, certain in the knowledge that it will have a standpipe. As I was searching the grounds for the standpipe, I met and got chatting to a man who introduced himself as Hugh. He joined me in my search for what had become an elusive standpipe. We wandered around the graveyard, but nothing could be found. We finally came to the presumption that the tap must be behind the barriers that enclosed the substantial amount of scaffolding surrounding the church. The church was clearly having some major maintenance work carried out on it’s exterior. Hugh then offered to take my butt home to fill. I gratefully accepted his offer. Half an hour later, Hugh pulled up in his car. He had brought an extra smaller butt with him. I decanted that into other containers. We then had a cup of tea and a bit more of a chinwag before he had to return home for his dinner. Hugh is a lovely bloke with an interesting story.
Later on, I was writing a post for my blog when I became aware of something appearing at my side. I looked down to see a beautiful, what I call, Persian coloured, cat; the beautiful sandy colour most associated with Persian cats, though this cat was clearly not Persian. Rowan, incredibly, was fast asleep, which was probably just as well. The cat, becoming aware of me, backed back out through the catflap. Rowan then awoke and became aware that something was amiss. She got up and went straight outside to investigate. Hearing the stand-off, I went out to separate them. I was amazed by the fact that our visitor was quite happy for me to stroke them, despite the stand-off. I gently shooed our friend off.
While I was at it, I discovered more problems with bloody Wix!! Photos have gone missing again. Fortunately, it hasn’t affected the blog this time - so far. I am about to move my blog to a different host site. I believe that it shouldn’t affect your enjoyment. In fact, you should hardly notice the move. That is, unless you are using the app. You will need to download the new app. I am aiming for the change-over to be completed by 1st. June. I will let you know as and when I need to.