I moved from East London to surrey in 2006, two weeks before I got married. Since, then hubby and I have moved around area a few times. Once we considered up sizing and relocating. Tempting as it was tempting, the access to good schools, being close to London and our networks meant couldn’t make the change. As an expat, networks are everything. Although we will be upsizing, in Surrey we will remain. During lock down we developed a deeper appreciation for our location. We made full use of the green spaces as an act of self-care. May 1st will mark the 2nd annual Surrey Day, in its honour I’ll share 5 places we enjoyed exploring during lockdown.
The Surrey Hills Arts Inspiring Views walk is a self-guided art trail experience through the woods of Hurtwood. Each sculpture blends in wonderful with the landscape and looks out to remarkable vistas. There are five piece stretched out along the 6 miles trail. We visited installation by Giles Miller, entitled Perspectives, located in the Winterfold Forest.
Standing in front of Perspectives, we had a clear view over the South Downs. It was peaceful.
On the day we visited Colley Hill, we parked at the National Trust car park which is at the end of Margery Lane which is on the turn off the A217. Then we walked up the hill over the dual carriage way and on to Colley Hill. At the top of the of the hill the view is panoramic. As far as the eyes can see there rolling hill, trees, as well as home and farms below.
The Inglis Memorial is collated there. Once a drinking fountain for horses at the top of the original main route over Reigate Hill. Now it features a marble compass and the ceiling has a magnificent mosaic of azure and gold illustrating an astrology map.
The Ash Aqueduct
I was intrigued when I read about the civil engineering feat, when I read about it in Surrey Live. So, I did my research to be sure it was kiddie-friendly and off we went. It was a glorious sunny day when we set out. https://thetigertales.co.uk/4-hours-in-aldershot-hampshire/
Surprisingly, it was calm it was along the along the aqueduct, while cars we whizzing by down below on the A331 dual carriageway to Blackwater Valley. There’s a foot path that runs along both sides of the aqueduct which allows pedestrians, cyclists and joggers to cross the dual carriageway safely.
Apparently, the aqueduct is 1.3 metres in depth and it’s a waterway that is traversed by canoeists and paddle boarders. We opted to walk down to Lakeside Nature Reserve where there’s an adventure playground.
I still feel as though we have not totally cracked Farnham. Driving to the heath we passed a few lovely pubs and I would certainly like to visit the down BUT our time on the heath is one of my fondest memories from 2020. We visited twice, one at the height up summer when the heather blooms where purplicious it was such a beautiful day we popped over to Frensham Ponds, roughly 8 minutes’ drive away.
Our second visit to Farnham Heath was in October. In autumn that’s when the fungi come out. I spotted my first ever red and white fly agaric!
Our newest exploration was to Gatton Park on Easter Sunday. They kids enjoyed the Easter egg hunt, it was one with a difference featuring a nature theme.
Gatton Park dates back to the Saxon Times. The Normans recorded it (as ‘Gatone’) in the Domesday Book some centuries later. There has been a great house on the grounds since 1086. However, Gatton Hall as it is today was rebuilt after the 1934 fire between 1934 and 1936. It was designed by Sir Edwin Cooper.
There is much for families to explore on along the park. Features include:
- Japanese garden
- Rock garden
- Wild Things Play Trail
There is parking, toilets and café on site. From the Parterre the view looks onto park, the main lake and the landscape beyond. Accessibility is limited along the parklands. See the website for further details an accessibility and entry prices.
Gatton Park can be enjoyed all year round but I’ll leave you with the views from early Spring.
On our YouTube Channel you will find other views to inspire you on your days out. If you have a place to recommend, please comment below.