EARTHAM WOOD TO NORE WOOD AND BACK 4 KM / 2 HOURS
One of the best bluebell woods in the local area is at Nore Wood near Eartham. The wood is part of the Slindon Estate and is managed by the National Trust. It is possible to walk from Eartham but parking in the village is limited. It is much easier to use the large car park at Eartham Wood. It has the advantage of picnic area and time-wise it doesn't make much difference.
How to get there
From Midhurst take the A272 towards Petworth. At the mini roundabout just outside Petworth, take the 2nd exit to turn right onto the A285. Remain on the A285 for 12.5 km passing through Upwaltham and Duncton before taking a turning on the left towards Eartham. The Eartham Woods car park is 700 m along this road, on the left.
1. From the car park, follow the straight Roman Road known as Stane Street for 350 m until you come to a footpath crossroad. This path is also the route of the long distance path known as Monarch's Way.
2. Turn right at the crossroad and follow this path for 200 m until you come to a T-junction. Turn left to keep the woods on your left. On the right are open fields with views across to Eartham village.
3. The path rises steadily and after 600 m there is a fork. Keep right to enter the woods. After a further 300 m, turn right at a T-junction. The woodland ahead is thickly carpeted with bluebells and there are signs advising which trails you can follow. Keep following the main trail until you come to a T-junction.
4. Turn left and follow the wide trail through the woods and back to the point where you first entered the woods. Turn left to retrace your steps back down Nore Hill and through Eartham Woods back to the car park.
Other things to do in the area
Eartham Woods are definitely worth exploring. There are many trails through the woods and you can picnic near the car park.
Eartham village has a really nice pub, with great food and plenty of seating inside and out. It is popular so if you want to eat, you will need to book ahead.
Slindon Estate is managed by the National Trust. Check out their website HERE to find out what activities are running, and to find more walks in the area. For a number of years Gaston Farm used to open to the public for lambing. This stopped during COVID but it's worth keeping an eye on their Facebook page to see whether they will begin doing this again.
Nore Folly is a Grade II listed building on the Slindon side of Nore Hill. A short diversion of the route described above will take you past it. It was built in the 1800's and restored in 1993 by the National Trust.
Halnaker Windmill is another Grade II listed building and a prominent feature of the landscape. You can see it from the Folly and walk quite close to it but you can't go inside. Halnaker Hill itself is a scheduled ancient monument and presents sweeping views of the land down towards Chichester and the sea.