The Cuckoo Trail (Sustrans route 21)

The Cuckoo Trail runs along a dis-used railway line between Heathfield just south of Tunbridge Wells and Polegate just to the north of Eastbourne on the South coast. This off-road walking and cycle route is a gem of the Southeast and attracts around 250,000 people a year exploring the lovely countryside between the towns that sit along trail. Mainly flat and almost entirely off-road, this is an ideal route to explore with the family. There are picnic benches to be found along the route as well plenty of shops and cafes in Heathfield, Horam, Hailsham and Polegate. We have partnered with the Wealden District Council to put bikes out at Horam directly along the Trail as well as also partnering with two further venues close by where you can just turn up and hire our bikes using the App. 

Map of where to find route

Type of route: Mainly off-road cycle and walking path

Suitability: All ages and family

Difficulty: Easy. Mainly flat and off road on good surface

Cuckoo Trail bike hire is made easy with Countrybike.

Image of The Cuckoo Trail
Image of The Cuckoo Trail
Image of The Cuckoo Trail

CountryBike venues along the route

At each of these venues, if you download and register on the Linka Go app, you can just turn up and hire one or multiple bikes on a pay as you go basis using the App. Please refer to our Prices and FAQs page for more information about how to hire the bikes through the mobile app.

Horam – The old station platform

The bikes at Horam are 2 minutes walk from a car park just off the centre of the town and sit next to the old station platform directly on the trail.

Fore more information on how to rent the bikes and how much they cost to rent, then please refer to our FAQs and Prices page 

Image of bikes in situ

Other venues nearby

These are venues in the area which we have bikes located although may be a little distance from the route. You are able to connect through to the route via country lanes which we have carefully chosen to recommend although we recommend you are comfortable with cycling on country lanes if planning to do so.

Herstmonceux Castle – Wartling

A lovely cycle ride along quiet lanes from the Cuckoo trail brings you to the wonderful Hertsmonceux Castle and Science centre. 

Herstmonceux Castle Gardens and Grounds is a 600 acre estate including woodland, formal themed gardens and of course a 15th century moated castle. Made from red brick Herstmonceux Castle is one of the earliest examples of a brick built building in England. In 1946 Sir Paul Latham sold Herstmonceux Castle to the Admiralty, which established it as the new home of the Royal Greenwich Observatory. From the early 1950s until 1989 Herstmonceux Castle remained a centre of scientific research and home to one of the world’s leading astronomical organizations. As well as operating throughout spring and summer as a popular tourist attraction, Herstmonceux Castle also operates as an International Study Centre for Queen’s University in Canada, the castle hosts international students every year who come to England to study within this tranquil setting.

Image of Herstmonceux Castle

Chilley Farm shop – Pevensey

The farm shop is located directly on Sustrans route 2 near Pevensey is this gem of a farm shop and cafe. It is a perfect spot to either head off exploring the coast, head up towards Herstmonceux castle or along and up the off-road Cuckoo Trail. 

Image of Chilley Farm shop cafe