Rye to Camber cycle path

Dangerous surface on the cycle path

Having lived in Camber all my life, and after years and years of having to use a cycle path which is far from ideal, the ‘Rye Ride’ has reopened with a freshly surfaced path all thanks to the generous benefactors at the Sustrans charity organisation. Despite this much needed renovation, I can’t help but focus on the parts that haven’t received the same love and attention, namely the section running through the sheep field located next to the Creative Centre.

This trail is necessary for anyone hoping to get from Rye to Camber (and vice-versa) by foot or bike and yet the state of it is genuinely abysmal.

Cycle path between Camber and Rye

Potholes pepper the pathway making manoeuvrability for bicycles a living nightmare, as cyclists are thrown about on their bike seats ad-nauseam. In extreme circumstances, the rough state of the road can cause punctures and injuries, which can and will greatly deter others from using the pathway.

Route 2 repairs

Sheep, obviously, are present on the sheep field. More often than not, they’ll graze under the shade – unfortunately the shade covers a major part of the trail which means that individuals will have to venture out onto the grass… I’m being purposefully ambiguous but if you do have to step off of the path, I’ll offer one word of advice: don’t wear any white shoes.

Credit where credit’s due, the recent improvements are very welcomed, but it’s a shame that after all the effort and expense, these improvements are being overshadowed by the further works needed to finish the job.

Image Credits: Nezar Boufrahi .


  1. Completely agree with you, Nezar. As a daily runner along this path, I was excited to see the above sign on the entrance to that section of the path. Disappointing to discover now that this length is not getting the same enhancement. It would be interesting to hear why not from Sustrans?

  2. I also welcome the upgrade of cycle path from Camber to the main road but as commented, the rest of the path needs the same attention. The section between Jurys Gap and the Kent border is in an appalling state and really only suitable for mountain bikes, the Kent side has a tarmac surface.

  3. This section of the National Cycle Route 2 (NCN2) is in a very bad state, no question. However, it will be considerably affected by the Environment Agency’s River Rother Tidal Walls East programme encompassing this area, which will involve a change in the riverbank and creation of new flood habitat etc, so there’s not much point in making improvements to the surface only to have them torn up later. Having said that, as far as I’m aware there’s no start date yet for this programme, which might take 3 years to complete. So maybe there is a case for work to be carried out in the interim.

  4. The Rye to Camber cycle path is usually avoided by dog walkers as we don’t want to scare the sheep, so we use the path along the river bank to walk to Camber. But lately I notice the gates to the sheep field are being left open. Is that being done intentionally? Dog walkers used to be able to have their dogs off the lead along the river bank. Now they cannot do that as the sheep are straying out of their field. Presumably the land along the river bank isn’t also owned by the sheep owner, or am I wrong?

  5. Totally agree.
    It would be such a pleasure being able to stay on one’s bicycle doing the first bit of the ride from New Rd towards Camber.
    There aren’t many safe opportunities for cyclists around here.

  6. As the owner of most of the field, known locally as the Corporation Ground or North Salts, I would like to make a few comments about the Cycle path and the importance of the grazed Salt Marsh which is part of Rye’s conservation area and maritime history.
    Firstly the reason the cycle path hasn’t been improved is because work has just started on realigning the eastern tidal wall of the River Rother.
    To do this the Environment Agency have purchased a significant area of the land from me for a new Sea Wall which will take up to five years to be completed and considerable disruption will occur during these works when hundreds of thousands of tons of clay will be brought in to make the new tidal wall. The footpath along the river will be closed and the cycle path disrupted while the work is taking place.
    The sheep always graze the Salt Marsh, it is an SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) which was created due to it having been grazed in the same way for decades if not centuries. It is a unique habitat which will unfortunately be degraded while the sea defence works takes place. The livestock only graze the salt marsh when the tides allow. I also owned all the salt marsh until a part was recently purchased by the EA for the works.
    The sheep enjoy sitting in the shade along the old school site and any residue left by them is once or twice digested grass, a harmless byproduct and very important for regenerative agriculture. Anyone wishing to purchase this fine Salt Marsh Lamb can do so from Jamie Wickens at The Ship Inn, Winchelsea Beach.
    The other good news is once the work on the tidal wall is completed then the area of the old Freda Gardham school site will be able to be developed with more much needed housing for Rye, and who knows it might even provide a site for a new petrol station and supermarket that is open on a Sunday!

  7. Let’s hope that when the housing happens on the Freda gardham site it will be affordable for local people and not for second homes and air and b.


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