Posted 24 October 2014 by Andrew Gardner
One of Sussex's best-known tourist attractions has reasons to be cheerful. The much-loved Bluebell Railway has seen visitor numbers increase by about 60,000 over the past year since it was reconnected to the main line via the Sheffield Park-East Grinstead section. That's an incredible achievement, especially as this heritage line depends on volunteers to keep it running. And while they say they'll always try to run steam trains - because, after all, that's the experience most of us want when we use it - if demand outstrips supply they'll have to run the occasional diesel as well. I'll be interested to see what happens.
For those of you visiting Sussex on holiday or for a long weekend, this is a fabulous time to go on the Bluebell Railway - click here to see accommodation close by. We seem to be having a particularly colourful autumn and the line gives you terrific views of some spectacular woodland with the turning trees in all their glory. It's also handy for a visit to Sheffield Park Gardens in East Sussex, which is renowned for its autumn colours. If you're keen on photography or painting you'll be in your element there, and if you just love to take in the scenery there is plenty to look at.
These lovely visitor attractions are right on the edge of the gorgeous Ashdown Forest, and if you haven't already found one of our cosy holiday cottages there I do urge you to check them out.
It's the weather of course that makes or breaks the autumn colours, and I was pretty surprised back at the beginning of September to find on the web what claimed to be an accurate weather forecast for Eastbourne in October. All of it, mind, and I thought that was quite ambitious. Not that I was complaining, since it seemed to predict nice sunny weather for much of this month and if you're visiting Eastbourne or staying in one of our lovely holiday apartments there it's what you'll want to hear. But is the forecast translating into fact? Ah, the power of the internet...