20 Sep Seven Sisters Trip Report!
The trip took a lot of prior preparation, which gave us valuable life skills. The document itself with the plan for our journey went through many re-drafts. Finding the cheapest possible train tickets and making sure the timings were appropriate also took a lot of time. Finding insurance seemed almost impossible, but we managed to do all these things in the end. We did other things for preparation such as first aid training and going to the gym, learning to map read etc. In order to prepare for a seven-hour walk, we even walked from our school to Westfield, which took us about three hours. It gave us an idea of the kind of pain we would be in on the actual walk! (yet was still fairly incomparable).
On the day of the walk, we met up at Asda to do some shopping. We decided to take a bit of water in our backpacks, but we felt it would be more manageable to bring large bottles of water inside a small suitcase that we would take turns pulling around. After we took the train, we got to the beach, which, in hindsight, we spent too much time on. The walk was a lovely experience and a physical challenge. The weather was quite hot, but thankfully, it was manageable. It was a series of going up and down cliffs, the person carrying the luggage at the time found it the most difficult. However, what enabled us to continue cliff after cliff was each other and the persistent support we provided one another through either funny chants or words of motivation.
We encountered our second challenge when came across a lake which separated where we stood and where we wanted to go and, in our instructions, it mentioned a bridge that we could not see from where we were so after asking some locals, we found it was a two mile walk away from the cliffs (to and back). What we found particularly challenging was that there was no pathway, so we had to swat our way through the almost knee length grass. We had very much underestimated the time (and energy) it would take to get across but it was a challenge indeed! Finally, we reached the bridge and we crossed and walked all the way around and reached a car park at Seven Sisters where we had our lunch and a resting time. We continued to walk and completed the challenge, walking up and down multiple cliffs.
There were more random holes in the ground than we expected, and the highlight of our trip was when we decided to run down one of the hills, and one of us tripped and fell, and when another one went to help, they also tripped and fell! It was also satisfying to see the very cliff that we used as the front cover for our planning document.
The initial plan was to walk from Seaford Station to Eastbourne Station via the Seven Sisters Cliffs and take the train home. We thought we had given ourselves plenty of time to finish the challenge, however, it was coming closer to the time of departure for our train, and we were having trouble finding the station (and getting to town in that case!). We realised we wouldn’t make it to town in time. We considered taking a bus, but that didn’t work out. We tried calling an Uber, but there were none available. We called a local taxi service, and after a long struggle with low connection, calls getting dropped, disagreements, wrong addresses, the driver was finally able to locate us. We missed our train, but the train man at the station allowed us to get on the next one, after explaining our situation.
Towards the end of this trip, during all this commotion, there were tears, shouting and arguments – It was a very stressful experience. However, we believe it only strengthened our friendship, and we all understood that it was nothing personal. We all learnt a lot and grew as individuals, as well as enhancing our team working skills. We became very close with each other and helped each other throughout the day with endless conversations whilst hiking and some games whilst enjoying the beautiful scenery and embracing the warm atmosphere. All in all, it was an outstanding experience, and we all learnt a lot. Despite being in agony the next day, we all wish to go back and repeat this experience or do something similar. We are extremely grateful to the Mark Evison Foundation for this opportunity!
Visit our fundraising page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/trip-to-seven-sisters
Bridget, Ashvini, Anika, Honey and Shaikha Year 13