This is the web site of the Friends of Hocombe Mead.
Hocombe Mead is a local nature reserve which is owned and managed by Eastleigh Borough Council with the support of the Friends of Hocombe Mead.
Hocombe Mead is an area of historic woodland and meadow, which is situated between Ashdown Road and Hocombe Road, under the ownership of Eastleigh Borough Council. This varied site comprises an area of 8.33 hectares, which includes mixed woodland and ancient meadows, with small areas of valley bog and remnants of heathland.
Eastleigh Borough Council is seeking a grant to replace the board walks over the swampy areas at the Hiltingbury Road end and in the middle of Hocombe Mead.
As part of the submission for this grant, a survey needed to be completed to show how many people use the Mead and whether they support the grant application. We had a magnificent response to this survey. We had very little notice of the survey being opened but we had well over 200 responses in the bare week that was available.
Join our enthusiastic and knowledgeable bird watcher as we complete the RSPB Birdwatch Survey of Hocombe Mead. Learn about the birds that inhabit the Mead. Please wear stout waterproof footwear and bring binoculars if you have them. The session will last one hour.There will be an opportunity for young people to make a bird feeder to take home with them during the session if they would like to do so.
Hocombe's two meadows are species rich. The North Meadow has a strong colony of Ringlet butterfly (Aphantopus hyperantus) and an abundance of purple loosestrife. The meadows form the central area through the reserve. Wet during some months of the year, the ground conditions can prove difficult to walk them with ease. However, they provide a rich habitat for plants and wildlife and are home to a range of butterflies. Cattle graze the North Meadow during the summer months whilst the south meadow is mechanically cut in sections.
Parts of the woodland are over 400 years old, featuring on old maps as far back as 1588, when it was known as Eagle's Copse. The meadow, which is also shown on the 1588 map, is the largest open space in Hocombe, which is relatively flat and in the summer is fairly well drained. Together, this wooded stream valley and meadow hold considerable value for both local amenity and wildlife.
Our next event will be Christmas at Hocombe Mead on Friday 16th December from 5.45pm to 7.30pm. There will be Christmas songs, the opportunity for children to decorate a lantern, seasonal refreshments and a magical candle lit walk through the woods. For further details of this event, please see our Events page.
Every month we publish a What to See page which shows the location of interesting things to see in the Mead. This page can be seen in the noitice boards at the three entrances to the Mead. This can also be seen, together with a more detailed I Spy page by visiting the What to See page of this web site.