Reigate must be one of the most dog populated towns in the UK if visiting Priory Park is anything to go by. As the nights lighten, evening dog walking in Reigate will start to increase. Priory Park is just outside the main town of Reigate and is great for dog walking and you can walk straight into it from Morrison’s Supermarket car park. Once there you can’t help but notice the sense of family, community and Reigate dog lovers!!
This walk starts by the very dog friendly, “pistachios in the park” café , you can’t miss the big glass round building, but more about this later!
This great dog walking in Reigate starts at the front of the café, if you look straight ahead you can see the beacon. This is lit on special occasions, the last one being to commemorate 100 years since the end of WW1 a few months back. Slightly to the left of the beacon you will see a big opening, head to this. Once here you will see a handy dog poo bin if needed. Now go straight up and you will notice the ground becoming sandy, in a while you will be joining the Greensand Way!
At the top of this hill you will see a bench where you and your dog can take a rest as you will soon be heading up again! From here, with your back to the park, you have 2 options going right, you will see an opening between the trees this is the Greensand Way which can get muddy or you can walk just a few feet more and take a more stable path but both will take you to the top of the park and you will see a monument explaining how some posh folk bequeathed the park to the common folk!
From here keep walking along and to your left you will see fantastic views over towards Gatwick Airport and Sussex beyond to the South Downs and, after a nice walk for a few hundred yards, you will come to a big opening on the right with views over Reigate onto the North Downs way, there are a couple of benches and again some handy poo bins (see how catered they are for the hounds), why not take in the scenery!
From here keep walking straight on and you will see another poo bin, you should bear right here and down the hill. Once at the bottom turn left and after a few yards you will see a set of steep steps down. Put the dog(s) on their leads and head down and cross over down the road opposite. If you look to your right you will see a windmill in the distance, you are heading to that. I would keep the dogs on the lead for now as you head down the road and past some stables * (see below) and once you have walked past some houses on your right and one on your left, head on.
You will cross over a stream where your dogs can have a welcome cool off it its hot! After this keep walking you will come to a bit of an opening and there are 3 paths you want to take the one straight up the hill and you will be going along an old drovers way watch out for horses! Keep walking up and then down this path and you will soon see the back of a building which is the Skimmington Castle Pub, probably the most dog friendly pub in the world if you want stop off, but, there will be more about this with Rob and his team in another article!
Walk round the front of this pub and past the front door you will see a path which goes between the pub and a cottage this again is the greensand way. Keep walking up here, it is well covered by trees, a few yards up you may hear a parrot, this is the old nursery, which has been sold now but, the parrot in its cage was still there a couple of weeks ago! It is said that Sir Winston’s Churchill’s parrot resided here on its last years. To your left you will see a walled garden this used to be the country home of the Film Mogul Arthur Rank (remember the big Gong?) Lots of movie stars from time gone by would spend time here. Keep walking and at the end you will see a lovely cottage, turn right here down the greensand way. Once at the bottom put the dogs on leads then head up the drive and cross the road.
You can now head up the sandy path and this will take you to the back of the Golf Club. Walk round the front and you will be afforded some of the best views in Surrey, you can walk round and have a look at the old windmill I told you about earlier which is now used as a church. Basically you can spend some time walking around this heathland but, beware of golfers. I will be talking more about other walks around here another time.
By now you should think about heading back just retrace your steps above.
At the stables, I mentioned earlier (*) you can go up again if you are feeling fit or take the flatter route to your left. You will have to open the big five bar gate but, remember to close it! You will now be walking between fields with horses in so be aware. At the end of this path is an allotment. Put your dogs on leads again and head over the road back into Priory Park.
Be aware you are now coming into the back of the park where there is a big pond just in case your dogs are prone to chase ducks! Walk around the paths or over the fields back towards Pistachios café where you started. Once here Gabby and the team will be able to tempt you with all sorts of delights, your hounds can go inside if it’s a wet day or plenty of spaces to sit outside if nice. It is a wonderful café and spot and Gabby is great! I have said I will put a link to her café here https://pistachiosinthepark.org.uk/priory-park/ .
I hope you enjoy this read and Reigate dog walking. Come back for more dog and pet friendly articles coming soon.
Best wishes Simon and the Team of Reigate Scamps and Champs.