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The South down Group was formed in the autumn of 1997 for members of the Hampshire Wildlife Trust, their friends and all those interested in local wildlife and the natural environment living in the countryside lying between Petersfield area in the north and Portsdown Hill in the south. This includes Blendworth, Cowplain, Clanfield, Denmead, Hambledon, Horndean, Lovedean, Purbrook, Rowlands castle, Waterlooville and Widley.

14th June 2008 Visit to Old Winchester Hill

Those who came on the walk led by Alan McVittie had a most enjoyable morning in perfect weather and were able to see a good variety of chalk downland species in flower. Amongst the most notable were Fragrant Orchids, Mignonette, Bird'sfoot trefoil, Mouse-ear Hawkweed, Yellow-wort and squinancywort. One or two Round-headed Rampion were flowering. On the south-east slopes vines were growing well and further west several Juniper bushes could be seen. It was a very clear and sunny day giving us some magnificent panaramic views across to the Isle of Wight and Beacon Hill in the west. Here is a small sample of pictures taken on the walk.

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View of Iron-age camp from near car park
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View of Beacon Hill to the west
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Admiring the views
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Alan explaining the management
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Fragrant Orchid on south east side
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Wild Mignonette
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Yellow-wort (Blackstonia perfoliata)
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Female Common Blue butterfly

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