***November 2020 update***
Due to Covid restrictions, we were unable to hold our postponed AGM as planned. However, on 3rd October, seven of us met up to discuss ongoing issues. We decided that we had done sufficient to satisfy the requirements of the Charities Commission with respect to an AGM, in order to take matters forward. The minutes of our meeting can be read here.
****All postponed until further notice****
Welcome to our Spring/Summer programme – March to September 2020****
All members are very welcome to join any Section meeting. If you wish to become a regular participant in any Section, please give your name and contact details to the Section Leader, who could then inform you of any activities which do not appear in the published programme. In the event of bad weather, please check with the Section Leader before setting out. See your printed programme for section leaders’ names and telephone numbers.
Visitors are welcome to attend up to 2 meetings in a year and are requested to introduce themselves to the leader at the start of the meeting. We hope that this will encourage them to join us. There may be a few meetings that have to be restricted to members only, for various reasons. This will be indicated in the programme.
Health & Safety advice:
On outdoor activities, please wear stout waterproof footwear, and clothing that protects against scratches and bruises.
Everyone who takes part in our activities does so at their own risk.
PLEASE CHECK THIS WEBSITE before attending any meeting listed in the printed programme, as meetings may have to be cancelled or postponed, due to bad weather, illness or other unforeseen circumstances. Section Leaders will do their best to update the website, but in the event of a severe weather forecast, widespread flooding, etc., you are also advised to telephone the Leader of each meeting on the day, before you set out, to find out whether the meeting is to be held, postponed or cancelled.
The Archaeology Group meets informally on most Wednesday mornings, details of meeting times and venues are available on the website http://www.iwnhas.org . For those who do not have access to the Web, and wish to join in these activities, please contact Helen Jackson, Tel 405158.
Meetings: We have a meeting booked in April in this programme, and we hope to arrange two or three more meetings during the summer. Details will be added to the IWNHAS website http://www.iwnhas.org as soon as they are finalized.
Clay Project: We have at least ten members regularly engaged in this project but there is always room for more! Our venue for making pots etc, is Dinosaur Isle, and this should take place sometime in April/May. Please check IWNHAS website http://www.iwnhas.org for further information.
Saturday 1 February 14.00 hrs – 16.30 hrs
Once again our popular Recorders’ Conference will be held at Arreton Community Centre SZ536865 and is open to everyone with an interest in recording wildlife on the Island. There will be a variety of interesting presentations and an opportunity to catch up with fellow enthusiasts over tea and cake during the interval. Parking at the hall; there is additional parking at the primary school across the road. The programme will be on the website and sent round to members nearer the time.
Saturday 8 February 13.30 hrs – 15.45 hours
Indoor Meeting. Our annual indoor meeting is at Arreton Community Centre (please note change of venue), reviewing last year’s finds and monitoring projects and looking at plans for the coming recording season. Please bring photographs or pressed specimens of unusual plants for the exhibition during the tea interval.
Looking At The Countryside
Tuesday 11 February at 10.00 hrs
Appley, Puckpool and Springvale. Meet at Appley car park Ryde, SZ606923. A stroll through the parkland & coastline of East Ryde, enjoying the evidence of villas and other residences, and their legacy in terms of schools, parkland and open spaces. Leader: Richard Smout, Tel 527477.
Saturday 15 February at 10.00 hrs
Wood Calamint lay-by clearance. Come and enjoy good company while assisting with the conservation of one of the Island’s specialities. Gardening gloves and hand tools would be useful. Meet along Rowridge Lane; further details at indoor meeting. Parking is limited so please arrange to share vehicles if possible.
Saturday 15 February at 14.00 hrs
The Bronze Age. A continuation of the “In the Beginning” series of Archaeological talks by Delian Backhouse-Fry covering the last 900,000 years of human occupation of these Isles. Venue : St. Lawrence Village Hall.
Saturday 22 February at 14.00 hrs
More Than Catherine. The role of women in the early years of the Isle of Wight Natural History and Archaeological Society. With the notable exception of Catherine Morey, the early years of the Society can seem to be dominated by men. Does a closer analysis of the Society’s early years, using sources such as the Proceedings, confirm this? Who were some of the early female members and what do we know about their contribution to the growth of the organisation? This talk focusses on those who became members during the lifetime of Catherine Morey, in the years up to 1943. Speaker: Richard Smout. Venue: Arreton Community Centre, SZ536865.
Saturday 29 February at 09.30 hrs
Shalfleet. Meet in the lay-by by the church SZ413893, for a walk to the Quay. We should see waders, ducks, geese and finches. Leader: Jim Baldwin, Tel 721137.
Looking at the Countryside
Tuesday 10 March at 10:30 hrs
St Catherine’s Down. Meet at Blackgang Viewpoint car park, SZ491767. A walk around St. Catherine’s Down and the ‘wide combe’ of Wydcombe valley, looking at landscape and management features both historic and natural. Steep in parts, may be muddy. Leader: Tony Tutton, Tel 0799915853.
Saturday 14 March at 14:00 hrs
Hedgehogs. Everything you want to know about these fascinating animals, a talk by Save Our Hedgehogs Isle of Wight. Find out where to find them on the Island and what you can do to help protect them. Squirrels – Return of the Reds, a progress report on their welfare from the Isle of Wight Red Squirrel Trust. Venue: Arreton Community Centre, SZ536865.
Sunday 15 March at 09:30 hrs
St Helen’s. Meet near the letter box by Selwyn Court in Latimer Road, (you should be able to park in the road) SZ630888. We will be walking in the vicinity of Bembridge Harbour and should see waders, ducks and gulls. Leader: Toni Goodley, Tel 652702.
Saturday 21 March at 10:00 hrs
Ryde Canoe Lake. We hope to find a good range of attractive but small early flowering sand dune plants and some showy naturalised bulbs. An identification meeting, suitable for beginners. Meet at western end of canoe lake, SZ600927. Parking in nearby streets. Leader: Colin Pope, Tel 611591.
Saturday 21 March at 14:00 hrs
THE IWNHAS ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Saturday 28 March 13:45 hrs for 14:00 hrs start
All our members are invited to attend the AGM to hear about the Society’s activities and finances during the past year and to vote for our officers and committees. We look forward to meeting you and having a chat, and we will try to answer any questions. Contributions of sandwiches, cakes, biscuits, crisps, nuts, fruit etc. for the buffet tea would be much appreciated. Venue: Arreton Community Centre, SZ536865.
Isle of Wight Natural History and Archaeological Society – 100th Anniversary Conference
Saturday 4 April 09:00 hrs – 17:00 hrs
‘Environmental Change on the Isle of Wight: Past, Present and Future’. The conference will consist of short talks by 14 invited speakers, several of which are international experts. Talks will be followed by discussion/plenary sessions to help us understand important issues relevant to the island’s natural history. We will explore four areas around the main theme: Climatic change, past, present and future; Species invasions and horizon scanning; Land use and landscape; Habitats and species. Venue: Riverside Centre, Newport Quay, PO30 2QR. Booking essential: £12 including lunch, tea/coffee. https://tinyurl.com/sxzpskv Leader: Roger Herbert, Tel 521040. Our IWNHAS website will be kept updated with latest details.
Centenary Conference field meeting and mini-Bioblitz
Sunday 5 April 10:00 to mid-afternoon
Bembridge Harbour. Meet at Brading Haven Yacht Club, Embankment Road, St Helens, PO33 1XQ, SZ631885. Environmental Change will be the theme of this meeting and will follow up conference discussions. Guided walks will be available to a number of environmental ‘mini-hubs’. Again details will be available on the IWNHAS web site. Parking at the yacht club. Sunday lunch available at the Club afterwards however booking is essential, Tel 872289. Leader: Roger Herbert, Tel 521040.
Saturday 18 April at 09:30 hrs
West High Down – Meet at the National Trust Chalk Pit car park above the High Down Inn, Totland, SZ324855 for a downland walk. Some stiles and steep in places. Migrants.
Leader: Jim Baldwin, Tel 721137.
Saturday 18 April at 14:00 hrs
Chalkclose Copse. We last visited this private ancient woodland between Parkhurst Forest and Thorness fourteen years ago. It is now under new ownership and Sam Cambridge has invited the Society to record in the wood so that he can learn about what is there. A recording meeting. The site is reached by a private track to Stagwell Dairy off Hillis Gate Road. The track is on the west side of the road at a bend, SZ471927. Drive down the lane to the end, parking on the lane. Leader: Colin Pope, Tel 611591.
Looking at the Countryside
Wednesday 22 April at 10:30 hrs
Grammar’s Common. Meet Chilton Chine, SZ410822 for a walk to Grammar’s Common, the Longstone and Mottistone. Includes one longish climb, may be muddy. Please park in public car park and NOT IW Pearl. Leader: Alan Phillips, Tel 741375.
Saturday 25 April at 10:00 hrs
Ventnor. Meet at Dudley Road car park, SZ566774 for a walk to Monks Bay. We will be examining the cliffs along the walk and trying to find out why the erosion is particularly bad at this spot; what type of coastal defences are in place, and whether these defences are doing their job. Leaders: Steve Hutt, Tel 840237 & Trevor Price, Tel 07593811751.
Wednesday 29 April
Day visit to Hengistbury Head and Christchurch Red House Museum. We plan to car-share, using the Yarmouth to Lymington Ferry. David Freeman, who was our excellent guide at Butser, has offered to lead us round this site which has a long history of occupation from the Stone Age to the Iron Age. Many of the finds can be seen at the Red House Museum. Details will be posted on the Archaeology page of the website nearer the time.
Please note the date is provisional depending on David’s availability. To register interest please email Helen Jackson: email@example.com, Tel 405158.
All Along the Riverbank.
Saturday 2 May 11:00 hrs to 16:00 hrs
Newchurch to Sandown-NR 23 cycle way (The Squirrel Trail) between Newchurch (Langbridge) and Sandown Waterworks, once part of the Island’s Rail network. All Along the Riverbank, now in its fourth year, is an outdoor arts and countryside festival especially for May Day stretching for 2 miles along the Eastern Yar on its journey from source to sea. IWatch Wildlife and IWNHAS will be there running natural history related activities. Free, family friendly event. Find out more. http://www.thenewcarnivalcompany.com/projects/all-along-the-riverbank/
Sunday 3 May at 09:30 hrs
Golden Hill Country Park – Park in gravel car park through the industrial estate from the Colwell Road at SZ337882 and follow track to car parking at SZ337879. Golden Hill celebrates 50 years as a Country Park this year and we will be recording bird species as part of the celebrations. Migrants and nesting species. Leader: Jackie Hart, Tel 612677.
Saturday and Sunday 16 and 17 May, 10:00 hrs to 18:00 hrs
Sandown, SZ607848. Sandown Bay spectacular, Hullabaloo is a two-day unmissable arts/nature/heritage extravaganza. IWatch Wildlife and IWNHAS will be based again in the Discovery Bay arena which showcases science, nature, and heritage activities. Free, family friendly event. For more information visit https://www.facebook.com/hullabalooiw/
Saturday 16 May at 14:15 hrs
Excursion to St George’s Down. Meet at Shide Bridge near cycle route, SZ504881 for a walk along the Bembridge Trail and onto St George’s Down. This route will follow that taken on the Society’s third ever excursion, in May 1920, during which a wren’s nest, a grizzled skipper and a green hairstreak were seen. Unlike 100 years ago no-one will return by train! “Excursion” scheduled to end by 4:30pm, and will be linear. Leader: Richard Smout.
Sunday 17 May at 14:00 hrs
Lock’s Farm meadow, Porchfield. A visit to Barry Angell’s flower-rich meadow to enjoy and record the early flora, including Green-winged Orchids. Park considerately on the grass verge outside of Lock’s Farm, Corf Road, SZ445908, from where we will walk across two fields to the site. Leader: Colin Pope, Tel 611591.
Looking at the Countryside
Wednesday 20 May at 10:30 hrs
Yarmouth. Meet at Yarmouth car park (charges apply) SZ354894, for a short walk to a private woodland on the Yar estuary, late Spring flowers. By kind permission of Helen Danby, Tel 761353.
Tuesday 26 May at 10:00 hrs
Dickson’s Copse – Park at the bottom of Stag Lane for a walk into the copse with Jim Baldwin. We could see Red-eyed and Downy Emerald damselflies and also other early season dragon and damselflies, SZ503916. Leader: Selena Bone, Tel 298073.
Joint meeting with the Historical Association
Wednesday 27 May at 19:00 hrs for 19:30 hrs
The Isle of Wight and the invention of Dinosaurs. A lecture by Dr Jeremy Lockwood. The south coast of the Isle of Wight is a prolific source of Cretaceous fossils recording a unique ecosystem dominated by dinosaurs, including the enigmatic Iguanodon. In the early 19th century this drew the pioneers of geology and dinosaur research to its shores, including famous characters such as Gideon Mantell, William Buckland and Charles Lyell. A pivotal fossil found at Brook Bay even prompted Richard Owen to invent the term ‘dinosaurs’. Extraordinary finds continue, ensuring a place for the Island at the forefront of British dinosaur research. Venue: provisionally at the Riverside Centre, Newport, SZ502894 but please check Society website for possible notice of change.
Wednesday 3 June
Coach Trip to the Natural History Museum, London. See your printed programme for details and the enclosed booking form.
Saturday 6 June at 11:00 hrs
Picnic on Ventnor Down. This informal meeting will allow members to socialize and explore together. There will be an opportunity to learn about reading the landscape and about past human activity in the area. Please bring your own picnic and something to sit on. Families will be particularly welcome. Meet at car park immediately before Ventnor Radar station, SZ565784. If the weather forecast is poor please check the Archaeology page of the website for updates.
Saturday 6 June at 14:00 hrs
Binnel Bay. A chance to record this little known area of the Undercliff, which has not been botanized by the Society for many years. This area was where the eccentric German Industrialist William Spindler lived in Old Park and where he attempted to build a harbour, the remains of which can still be seen. The area is rich in both flora and fauna and, weather permitting, we should see Glanville Fritillary butterflies, as well as many interesting coastal plant species. Bring identification book, pencil and hand lens, if you have one. Limited parking at Dave and Hazel Trevan’s house (Hejira, Hunts Road, St Lawrence, SZ528762) or park in Old Park Road. Wear stout footwear as we will be walking through Charles Wood down to Binnel Bay. Leaders: Dave and Hazel Trevan, Tel 853927 Mobile 07979 098760.
Looking at the Countryside
Wednesday 17 June at 10:00 hrs
Freshwater. Meet at the car park near the golf course, SZ351856. A glorious walk along the coastal path of this very scenic area, with stunning views. The area is rich in coastal flora and fauna. Strenuous in parts, so sensible footwear. Bring camera, smartphone, there will be much to see! Leaders: Dave & Hazel Trevan, Tel 853927 Mobile 07979 098760.
Friday 19 June at 21:00 hrs
Haseley Manor – moth trapping – with Iain Outlaw. Meet in the car park behind the gates on the right before end of drive, SZ546857. Leader: Selena Bone, Tel 298073.
Friday 26 June at 21:30 hrs
Mottistone Common – Meet at the National Trust car park in Strawberry Lane towards the bottom of the hill, SZ411837. An evening walk to hear and see Nightjars. Please bring a torch, as paths are uneven and it will be dark. Leader: Jackie Hart, Tel 612677.
Sunday 28 June at 14:00 hrs
Parkhurst Forest – Meet in main car park for a walk with Jim Baldwin. There’s a good chance of seeing the Emerald damselfly and also White Admiral and Silver-washed Fritillary butterflies, SZ482900. Leader: Selena Bone, Tel 298073.
Saturday 11 July at 14.00 hrs
The Archaeology of the Undercliff: a talk by Delian Backhouse-Fry. This is a world full of history and legend, distinct from the rest of the Island yet accessible by sea from the south and used by travellers from the Ice Age onwards. Venue: St Lawrence Village Hall.
Saturday 18 July at 09:30 hrs
Newtown – Meet at the National Trust visitor centre car park, SZ424905 for a walk in the area. Parking fees apply. We should see gulls, waders and ducks. Leader: Toni Goodley, Tel 652702.
Saturday 18 July at 14:00 hrs
Copse Mead Nature Reserve, Lake – This meadow site next to Lake Cemetery is managed by Wight Nature Fund. Please park in Cemetery Road, James Avenue or Green Lane, SZ585829. Leader: Selena Bone, Tel 298073.
Sunday 19 July at 14:00 hrs
Culver headland. A visit to Culver Down to enjoy and identify a wide range of grassland plants. Suitable for beginners. Meet in National Trust car park at far end of Culver Down, SZ636856. Leader: Colin Pope, Tel 611591.
Looking at the Countryside
Thursday 23 July at 10:00 hrs.
Arreton. Meet by the White Lion pub, park in the village car park, SZ534867. Jamie Marsh, from Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, will lead a walk over Arreton Down. Hopefully we shall see some butterflies. Tel 760016.
Saturday 25 July at 10:30 hrs
Whippingham, the Medina and Barton Manor. A 6 mile circular walk from Whippingham church with John Margham. Themes will include the early history of Whippingham church, the significance of the Medina estuary in the Anglo-Saxon period, place-names and medieval land use, a medieval beacon site and the connection between Barton Manor and the site of Carisbrooke Castle in the mid Saxon period. Bring your own lunch and have suitable clothing/footwear for a day out. Cars can be parked in the church car park. We encourage car sharing as a wedding may yet be booked.
Saturday 8 August at 10:15 hrs
Visit to Ventnor Heritage Centre, situated on the corner of the High Street and Spring Hill. Volunteers have worked hard to develop a fascinating museum of local history and the visit will be a follow-up to the July talk. Parking is available in the nearby car parks (charges apply) or use the No. 3 bus.
Wednesday 12 August at 10:00 hrs
Norton Spit. We will park at Fort Victoria and walk along the coast to Norton Spit where we expect to find Sea Holly, Sea Bindweed and many other colourful coastal and sand dune plants. Afterwards, we will enjoy a picnic on the grass at Fort Victoria. Bring your own picnic or, if preferred, there is a café where you can purchase food and drinks. Meet at Fort Victoria car park, SZ338897. Leaders: Dave and Hazel Trevan, Tel 853927 Mobile 07979 098760.
Looking at the Countryside
Saturday 15 August at 10:30 hrs
Newchurch. Meet at Newchurch car park, SZ563856 for an update on the work of Wight Nature Fund at Youngwoods Copse and Alverstone Mead. Leader: Mary Edmunds, Tel 532055.
Saturday 15 August at 14:00 hrs
Laundry Lane, Brading – Meet in unmade road off Carpenters Road. We will walk along the old railway line and possibly enter Brading Marshes if time permits, SZ622884. Leader: Selena Bone, Tel 298073.
Sunday, 23 August at 09:30 hrs
Mottistone Down – Meet at the National Trust Jubilee car park at the top of Lynch Lane, SZ420845 for a walk on the down to the Longstone and return up Strawberry Lane to the car park. There should be returning migrants. Leader: Jackie Hart, Tel 612677.
(subject to change)
Wolverton Manor Garden Fair
Saturday 5 & Sunday 6 September, 10:00 hrs to 17:00 hrs
Wolverton Manor Garden Fair, Shorwell – We will be exhibiting at the Fair on both days. Please come and say hello to our volunteers at our stand and view our displays.
Saturday 5 September at 14:00 hrs
Martin’s Wood – Meet in the large car park north of Newchurch School. A walk around this nature reserve managed by HIWWT. We should see woodland butterflies such as Purple Hairstreak and many species of bees and wasps such as the striking Ruby-tailed wasp, SZ562855. Leader: Selena Bone, Tel 298073.
Sunday 6 September at 14:00 hrs
St Helen’s Duver. We hope to be able to enjoy the abundance of Autumn Squill, which should be in full flower, but there will be plenty of other interesting plants to take our attention. Suitable for beginners. Meet at National Trust car park on St Helen’s Duver, SZ636891, charges apply to non NT members. Leader: Colin Pope, Tel 611591.
Saturday 19 September at 09:30 hrs
Culver Down – meet at the far eastern car park on Culver Down, SZ636856 for a walk in the area. There should be some birds on migration. Leader: David Biggs, Tel 292595.
Saturday 26 September
A joint meeting with the Hampshire Field Club. Venue: Brading Roman Villa, SZ600863 and Steyne Wood Battery, Bembridge, SZ641869. Full details in next programme.
Looking at the Countryside
Wednesday 30 September at 10:00 hrs
Chale. Meet at Whale Chine car park, SZ470784. A linear walk to the Coastguard Cottages and back. Hope to see migrants. Leader: Andy Butler, Tel 854925.
Centenary Closing Dinner
Venue: The Isle of Wight College, Newport, SZ498899. Full details in next programme.