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…ok, it was actually Thursday. But the valley was nonetheless pleasant. And I couldn’t get the Monkees song out of my head for most of this walk, so I don’t see why you shouldn’t have to suffer it too. A circular walk in the Surrey Downs.

Chipstead Valley & Banstead Woods, Surrey

Wide sweeping valley bottom south of Chipstead

Wide sweeping valley bottom south of Chipstead

This was a walk I undertook one afternoon and early evening after work, having been thwarted in an attempt to walk part of the North Downs Way in Kent by incessant rain the previous weekend. It was a last-minute idea, really just an attempt to burn off some energy and dissipate the frustration of having my previous plans scuppered, so I wasn’t expecting anything spectacular. But I was pleasantly surprisedĀ  – some fairly steep climbs rewarded by superb views across the Surrey countryside, and beautiful woodlands and meadows; much of the route falls within Chipstead Downs Site of Special Scientific Interest.

Start/Finish: Chipstead Station TQ276582

Length: 6Ā¼ miles/3 hours

How to get there: Chipstead is on the Tattenham Corner branch, served by Southern from London Bridge and Victoria, the journey taking about an hour. Some trains divide at Purley so make sure you travel in the correct part, or end up in Caterham.

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