insideKENT Magazine Issue 63 - June 2017 - Page 45

DAYSOUT SOUTH FORELAND LIGHTHOUSE WALK WE CAN’T PROMISE BLUEBIRDS FLYING OVER THE WHITE CLIFFS OF DOVER, BUT WE THINK YOU’LL BE SUITABLY IMPRESSED WITH THE SOUTH FORELAND LIGHTHOUSE AS THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR WALK. SITTING WITHIN KENT’S HERITAGE COASTLINE, A FANTASTIC CLIFFTOP POSITION, THIS DISTINCTIVE WHITE LIGHTHOUSE WAS ONCE HOME TO THE KNOT FAMILY AND THEIR 13 CHILDREN. BUILT IN 1843 TO WARN SHIPS OF THE DANGEROUS BANKS, IT WAS SUBSEQUENTLY USED BY GUGLIELMO MARCONI FOR HIS WORK WITH RADIOWAVES AND RECEIVED THE FIRST SHIP- TO-SHORE MESSAGE FROM THE EAST GOODWIN LIGHTSHIP. IT ALSO RECEIVED THE FIRST INTERNATIONAL RADIO TRANSMISSION FROM WIMEREUX, IN FRANCE, IN 1899. Setting off from the visitor centre you can enjoy clifftop views across the channel and take a look at the fabulous ‘Gateway to the White Cliffs’ display before heading out on your walk. With the visitor centre on your left, follow the wide surfaced path up a slight incline. Proceed for approximately 200 metres and then go through a narrow gap. From here bear slightly left at the milestone and waymarker to walk along a grassy path. Take a look to see if you can spot any wildflowers or maybe some butterflies in the grasses. At the top of the hill, go through the kissing gate. Here you’ll be treated to unrivalled clifftop views and your first impressive sighting of Langdon Hole – a series of underground tunnels and radio command centre known as Fan Bay Deep. The Fan Bay is open to visitors and owned by the National Trust at selected bookable times – check out the National Trust website for more information. As you make your way back down the slope via the beautiful narrow path, you’ll be able to stop at several points. Why not take this time to admire the ships out in the channel. As one of the busiest sea faring routes, you’re sure to see a vast selection so don’t forget to bring your binoculars! 45