First events for Lewes Hike and Bike Festival announced

Cycling the South Downs Way near Ditchling Beacon
Cycling the South Downs Way near Ditchling Beacon

A road cycling race along country lanes, a wheelchair walk around a nature reserve and a hike across the South Downs are just some of the activities which will be part of the Lewes Hike and Bike Festival.

Organisers have started to announce some of the events which will be part of the festival which this year will have activities taking place in Seaford, Newhaven, Peacehaven and Lewes.

New events will be added to the Lewes Hike and Bike Festival as the start date draws closer, so people should keep their eye on the programme as it develops.

The festival will open on Saturday May 30 with a Street Fair in Cliffe precinct in Lewes.

There will be a full programme of guided walks and rides from May 30 to June 21.

Many of these events start from towns and villages across Lewes District and most are free to join.

Festival co-ordinator Brian DeVal said: “The programme has something for everyone no matter how inexperienced or unfit people think they are.

“Many walks and rides will take just a few hours, including stops for refreshments.

“We also have all day hikes and rides, short nature rambles, town centre lunchtime walks, bike maintenance courses and evening talks.

“A number of the programmed walks and rides have been especially designed by local clubs using their local knowledge and experience to make the routes as interesting as possible.”

Headline events include an on road Sportive on May 31 which will start in Malling Fields in Lewes.

There will be a choice of either a 54 mile or 29 mile route.

It will start at Malling Playing Fields. The race will be timed and marshalled.

And on June 7 there is an off road Sportive over a 24 mile route.

In addition to the main Festival programme there is a special programme of events starting and finishing at Peacehaven’s Big Park on Saturday June 20.

The programme will include family rides, nature walks, children’s activities, stalls and displays.

The Festival is being supported by South Downs National Park Authority, Lewes District Council and East Sussex County Council.

Brian added: “This year the Big Lottery Fund is also supporting the Festival.

“Their award is recognition that events like the Lewes Hike and Bike Festival can make a difference and help more people enjoy what many of us take for granted – an active lifestyle and the magnificent South Downs.”