Forthcoming Meetings

IWNHAS meeting

IWNHAS meeting

Welcome to our Spring/Summer Programme
March 2024 to August 2024

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 will 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 overleaf for their names and contact details.

Visitors are welcome to attend 2 meetings in a year and requested to introduce themselves to the leader at the start of the meeting. We hope this will encourage them to join us. A few meetings may 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.

Society President: Matthew Chatfield, Tel 616771, Email
Membership Secretary: Mrs T Goodley, Tel 652702 or 07849 089924, Email
Society Secretary: Colin Pope, Tel 611591, Email
Society Treasurer: Nigel Locke, Tel 407287, Email

Archaeology: Dave Staughton, Tel 07802 918416, Email

Botany: Colin Pope, Tel 611591, Email
Dave & Hazel Trevan, Tel 853927 or 07979 098760, Email

Entomology: Selena Bone, Tel 298073 or 07971 457624

Fungi: Colin Pope, Tel 611591, Email

General: Maggie Nelmes, Tel 852274, Email

Geology: Steve Hutt, Tel 840237 & Trevor Price, Tel 07593 811751, Email

Looking at the Countryside: Mary Edmunds, Tel 532055 or 07791491562, Email

Microscopical: Paul Bingham, Tel 526049, Email

Ornithology: Jim Baldwin, Tel 07528 586683, Email

Visual Records Collection: We would welcome digital or printed photographs of meetings: flora and fauna, geology, archaeological artefacts – anything relevant to the interests and history of the Society – for our photo library. All originals will be returned. Please contact Society Headquarters.

Society Headquarters: Unit 7c, Prospect Business Centre, Prospect Rd, Cowes PO31 7AD, Tel 282596, Email

Society’s Website:
Programme Secretary: Maggie Nelmes, Tel 852274, Email

Venue for indoor meetings: Arreton Community Centre, Main Road, Arreton, near Newport (unless otherwise stated).

Archaeology Meetings
The Wednesday fieldwork meetings continue, subject to weather conditions. For details check the Archaeology page on the website or ask to be added to the mailing list by contacting:

Members unable to join in the fieldwork might wish to be involved in other ways, such as online research or exploring local resources. Anyone interested please contact Dave Staughton as above. We also produce an occasional newsletter to inform interested members of our current work.




Saturday 3 February 13:30 hrs – 16:00 hrs

Botany Indoor Meeting. Our Annual Indoor Meeting is at Arreton Community Centre SZ 536 865. We will be reviewing last year’s finds and monitoring projects and looking at plans for the coming season. Please bring along any photographs or pressed specimens of interest for the exhibition during the tea interval.

General Meeting

Saturday 10 February at 14:00 hrs

Butterflies, Birds and Flowers of Bulgaria – an illustrated talk by Ian Pratt. The biodiversity in Bulgaria is amazing: we saw 146 species of butterflies in two weeks last July and over 100 species of birds in ten days in April this year. The butterflies include some of the largest and most fascinating in Europe. Venue: Arreton Community Hall.


Sunday 11 February 10:00 hrs

Wood Calamint working party. Meet at Rowridge Lane, off Calbourne Road, SZ 4535 8687, to clear vegetation competing with Wood Calamint, (Clinopodium menthifolium), the Island’s special plant. You may wish to bring your own tools, gloves are recommended. Some tools and high visibility jackets will be provided. Leader: Mark Simmons, Mob 07392 614256 or email


Sunday 11 February at 09:30 hrs

Binfield to the Folly. Park in the car park by the Marina on east bank of River Medina, SZ 511 919, for a walk along the river bank to the Folly and then return. We should see geese, ducks and waders. Leader: Jim Baldwin.

Looking at the Countryside

Saturday 17 February at 10:00 hrs

Meet at Godshill car park, SZ 530 818, for a walk to the church, a quick look at the Worsley tomb, then following the Stenbury/Worsley trail to Appuldurcombe, perhaps ascending to the Worsley monument, returning through the woodland to Godshill. Wonderful views, some geology, archaeology and history. Approximately 3 miles, 3 hours. Leader: Steve Hutt.


Saturday 24 February at 14:00 hrs

Building the Roman Aqueducts. The aqueducts built by the Romans are some of the marvels of the ancient world. The skills in surveying and construction were not surpassed until the Victorian canal builders and the ability to manage major industrial projects would impress today’s construction managers. David Millar, fresh from five years study of the Augusta Aqueduct in the Naples area, looks at the planning involved, the surveying skills needed, the construction techniques available in the first century BC, and the issues that were involved in organising a work force of soldiers, labourers and slaves. Venue: St. Lawrence Village Hall SZ 541 861. Organiser: Helen Jackson.

MARCH 2024

General Meeting

Saturday 9 March at 14:00 hrs

Gift to Nature – an illustrated talk by Graham Biss of local charity Natural Enterprise. Since 2002, we have created and cared for a variety of green spaces, in towns and countryside, across the Island. In 2016, we took on the management of most of the Isle of Wight Council’s countryside estate, to add to our own existing Gift to Nature sites. Some sites are wider open spaces, such as Brading Down, whilst others are small, urban oases. All are important to local people. Venue: Arreton Community Hall.


Saturday 16 March at 10:00 hrs

Gore Cliff & Niton Undercliff. Meet at the Old Blackgang Road car park (No parking charges), SZ494758. If the small car park is full, please park considerately on the lane. Looking at the changing shape of the Island. Some slopes, stout footwear recommended. Section Leader: Steve Hutt.


Sunday 17 March at 09:30 hrs

Firestone Copse. Meet in the main car park off Firestone Copse Road, SZ558910. Woodland and water birds. Leader: Dave Fairlamb 07470 438815 or email


Saturday 23 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 food items to share will be very welcome – such as sandwiches, cakes, biscuits, quiche, crisps, nuts, fruit and raw vegetable sticks. Venue: Arreton Community Centre, SZ536865.

Looking at the Countryside

Wednesday 27 March 10:00 hrs

Brading. Meet at SZ5882788286, just off East Ashey lane inside the double gateway near Nunwell Cottages, to walk through the HIWWT rewilding on the Nunwell Estate to Eaglehead and Bloodstone Copses, where we may see early toothwort. On to more HIWWT land to see ‘rewilding in action’. Learn how conservation and farming can go together. Approximately 5km., 2-3 hours. Some hills and it may be muddy. Car sharing where possible, some parking available at the site entrance. Leader: Emma Hunt, Tel 07741312892.

APRIL 2024


Saturday 13 April 14:00 hrs

Beech Copse, Godshill. We will walk to Beech Copse (about 600m) where we will record the spring flora of this ancient woodland. There has been no previous comprehensive list of the flora from here. Meet in the village car park opposite the Griffin pub (free parking), SZ530816. Section Leaders: Dave and Hazel Trevan.

Looking at the Countryside

Wednesday 17 April at 10:30 hrs

Merstone. Meet at Merstone Old Station, SZ526845 for a walk of varied interest, 3-4 miles, may be muddy in parts. Leader: Jill Green, Tel 863763.


Saturday 20 April at 14:00 hrs

Archaeology of Isle of Wight Woodlands. A talk by Vicky Basford. Venue: St Lawrence Village Hall SZ541861. Organiser Section Leader: Helen Jackson.


Sunday 21 April at 09:30 hrs

Culver Down. Meet at the far eastern car park on Culver Down, SZ636856 for a walk in the area. Spring migrant birds. Leader: Jackie Hart, Tel 612677 or Email


Saturday 27 April at 10:00 hrs

Ventnor. Meet at La Falaise public car park (parking charges apply) SZ559773, above the Spyglass Inn. Looking at the managed coastline. Section Leader: Steve Hutt.


Saturday 27 April at 14:00 hrs

St Helen’s Duver. Explore the botanically rich Duver for early spring annuals. The Duver has the largest list of species/per area of anywhere on the Island. Spring is the best time to appreciate the floral richness of the Duver but many of the special plants are tiny and best appreciated on hands and knees using a hand lens. Meet at the National Trust car park on St Helen’s Duver, SZ636891, (charges apply for non-NT members). Section Leader: Colin Pope.

MAY 2024

General Meeting

Friday 10 May at 14:30 hrs

TOUR of Newport Minster. Meet outside the main entrance in St Thomas’s Square. Finally, the Minster is off the At-Risk Register of significant historic buildings and the final phase of restoration should be completed by Easter. Come on our conducted tour to learn about the origins of the building and what was found under the floor. Tea and cake available in the café afterwards. Booking essential, as numbers limited. Contact Section Leader: Maggie Nelmes.


Saturday 11 May at 09:30 hrs

Laundry Lane. Meet at the St. Helens end of Laundry Lane, SZ620882, for a walk along Laundry Lane and returning via Bexley Point and the new bridge pools. Breeding birds and migrant birds en-route to their breeding grounds. Leader: Jackie Hart, Tel 612677 or Email


Sunday 12 May at 14:00 hrs

St Helen’s Green. We have been asked to re survey the Green following a change in mowing regimes. Park in the car park by the sports pavilion, SZ628891. Section Leader: Colin Pope.

Looking at the Countryside

Saturday 18 May at 10:00 hrs

Meet at the Isle of Wight Postal Museum, 408 Fairlee Road, Newport, PO30 2JX, SZ516915. We are promised an insight into the history of the iconic post boxes as owner Arthur Reeder guides us around the 2 acre site, which has a good variety of trees and the chance of seeing red squirrels. Plenty of parking, bus no. 9 Medina route to Island Harbour. No booking needed. Leader: Michele Van Buren. Text or phone 07761587931.


Saturday 18 May at 14:00 hrs

Gore Cliff, Blackgang. We will record and admire the showy coastal flora growing on the Gore clifftop. Meet at Blackgang viewpoint car park (free parking), SZ490767. Walk along the clifftop towards Niton. Section Leaders: Dave and Hazel Trevan.


Saturday 25 May at 14:00 hrs

Embankment Road, St Helens. Meet in Embankment Road for a walk along the path to Bembridge Lagoons, SZ630885. Section Leader: Selena Bone.

JUNE 2024


Saturday 1 June at 10.00 hrs

Shippards Chine. Meet at Hanover Point National Trust car park, SZ378840, (parking charges apply) for a cliff top walk to explore this no longer managed coastline. Section Leader: Steve Hutt.


Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 June

BSBI Weekend. This weekend we will welcome members of the BSBI from across the country to enjoy the richness of the Island’s flora. We will explore various sites in West Wight on Saturday and East Wight on Sunday but we will start on Saturday at the (free) National Trust car park on Afton Down, east of Freshwater, SZ351856, at 11.00 hrs. Section Leader: Colin Pope.


Saturday 8 June at 14:00 hrs

Fort Victoria. Meet at the car park for a walk along the Nature Trail, SZ338897. Section Leader: Selena Bone.


Sunday 9 June at 09:30 hrs

Alverstone. Meet at the entrance to the cycle track at SZ588851 by Sandown Water Works for a walk to Alverstone. Breeding birds. Leader: Dave Fairlamb 07470 438815 or email

Looking at the Countryside

Wednesday 12 June at 10:30 hrs

St Lawrence. A million tree-planting, drugs smuggling fiasco, and two remarkable churches. About 3 miles, mostly on rough paths. Wear walking boots/shoes. Park considerately in Inglewood Park housing estate, SZ543769. Section Leader: Maggie Nelmes.


Friday 14 June at 20:30 hrs

Mottistone Common. Meet at the National Trust car park in Strawberry Lane towards the bottom of the hill (not Mottistone Manor car park), SZ411837. An evening walk to hear and see Nightjars. Please bring a torch as paths are uneven and it will be dark. Leader: Teresa Tearle, email or Tel 07795 078049.

General Meeting

Saturday 15 June at 14:00 hrs

Brading. A tour of Wilder Nunwell, a recent Wildlife Trust acquisition, looking at the rewilding programme and how the land is responding to a natural process-led management regime. Parking in the open area of the yard at Nunwell Farm, SZ592877. Leader: Jamie Marsh.

National Trust Bioblitz

Saturday 22nd June

National Trust Bioblitz, Dunsbury. The Society / iWatch will be assisting with this event. The National Trust are keen to obtain more records of all species for this area, based in one of the fields at Compton, north of the Military Road. Come and help us record in this area. See Society website for details nearer the time.


Sunday 23 June at 14:00 hrs

Shorwell Marsh. We will explore and record the botanically rich wetland flora of Shorwell marshes. Meet at the start of footpath SW2 at the end of Russell Road/Fine Lane junction, SZ455826. Off road parking. Wellington boots advised but not essential. Section Leader: Colin Pope.


Swift Awareness Week

National Swift Awareness Week commences on Saturday 29 June and ends on Sunday 7 July. In conjunction with the Wight Swifts Facebook Group, we will be meeting for an evening walk to view Swifts at a venue and date yet to be decided. Look for details on the Society website nearer the time. There will also be information on the Facebook group Wight Swifts.

JULY 2024


Saturday 6 July at 14:00 hrs

Newtown Meadows. Meet in the National Trust car park, SZ423906. A small parking fee applies. Section Leader: Selena Bone.

General Meeting

Saturday 13 July, All day from 10:30 hrs to late afternoon

Limerstone. A five-mile circular walk from Limerstone Farm, SZ443825, led by John Margham, exploring the historic landscape of Limerstone Manor. We will ascend to Coombe Tower, then on to Yafford and Thorncross, returning to the farm to look at the 1778 estate map and enjoy some refreshments. Bring a packed lunch. Limited parking, car sharing advised. Booking essential, as only 20 places. Contact Section Leader: Maggie Nelmes.

Looking at the Countryside

Saturday 20 July at 10:00 hrs

Shorwell. Meet at the Parish Hall, Russell Road, SZ458825 for a historic landscape walk across fields to Atherfield. Mainly flat but could be muddy in places if recent rain. Place-name origins, medieval snippets, even a local saint! Leader: Alan Phillips, Tel 741375.


Saturday 20 July at 14:00 hrs

Kingston Cemetery, East Cowes. Park in Kingston Road and meet at the entrance of the cemetery, SZ503947. Section Leader: Selena Bone.


Saturday 27 July at 14:00 hrs.

Headon Warren. We will be exploring the colourful heathland flora of Headon Warren. Plenty of heathers and Dwarf Gorse. We will follow footpath T17 from Cliff Road onto Headon Warren. Park by the roadside in Cliff Road, Totland, SZ319862. Section Leaders: Dave and Hazel Trevan.


Sunday 28 July 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. Nesting and migrant species. Leader: Jackie Hart, Tel 612677 or Email



Saturday 10 August at 14:00 hrs

Shide. Meet at the small car park at the beginning of the cycle path to Blackwater. If the car park is full, there should be space along the road, SZ503881. Section Leader: Selena Bone.


Saturday 17 August 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. Section Leader: Jim Baldwin.

Looking at the Countryside

Tuesday 20 August at 10:30 hrs

Ryde Cemetery. Meet at St. Paul’s Chapel, West Street, Ryde PO33 2QF, SZ589920. Ryde Social Heritage group invite us to explore the History of Ryde Cemetery, including the three chapels and varied architecture of many memorials in the cemetery. There are displays showing some of the Social History of Ryde and there will be time to look at the extensive archive material at the centre. There will be a £3 charge for this event. Contact Section Leader: Mary Edmunds.


Saturday 24 August at 14:00 hrs

Bembridge Down. We will be looking for late summer chalk downland plants including Autumn Ladies-tresses, Autumn Gentian, Bastard Toadflax and Clustered Bellflower. Meet at the first National Trust car park on the left past Bembridge Fort, SZ625860. Section Leader: Colin Pope.

Wolverton Manor Garden Fair

Saturday 31 August & Sunday 1 September, 10:00 hrs – 17:00 hrs

Wolverton Manor, Shorwell. The Society will be present at this event. Please come and say hello to our volunteers at our stand and view our displays.

Advance Notice

Looking at the Countryside

Wednesday 11 September at 10:30 hrs.

Crainges Copse, Calbourne (opposite Sandpits Farm), SZ429876. A walk and talk by Graham Hardy around a semi-ancient woodland with a demonstration of a country craft such as hurdle making and/or pole-lathe turning and a brief talk on charcoal making. Number limited to eight for this event so Booking Essential. Parking is extremely limited so please car share or bus no. 7 from Newport or West Wight stops at Pump Lane, from where we can walk to the Copse. Contact Section Leader: Mary Edmunds.


Saturday 14 September at 14:00 hrs

Ryde to Puckpool. We will explore the rich and varied flora around Ryde Canoe Lake and Appley looking for, amongst other things, Twiggy Mullein, the unusual Scentless Geranium, Fragrant Evening Primrose and Treasure Flower. We will then venture onto the beach to look at Eelgrasses (Zostera spp.). Meet at the western end of Ryde Canoe Lake, SZ599927. Roadside parking in the vicinity (charging may apply). Section Leader: Colin Pope.