Overton Biodiversity Society
Overton is a lively village in North Hampshire, 12 km (8 miles) west of Basingstoke. The parish covers an area of approximately 35 km2 (13 sq miles) including the upper Test valley, on the western side of the Hampshire downs. The village lies at the centre of the parish on the banks of the river Test and is surrounded by agricultural land dedicated to arable crops and grazing. The upper soil is made for the most part of chalk with scattered areas of clay with flint and some river and valley gravel deposit in the river valley itself.
The Society was created in 2004 by residents with an interest in their surrounding environment and its associated biodiversity. It was a formalization of the structure of the Biodiversity Group formed in 2003. O.B.S. is a member of the Basingstoke Conservation Forum.
The aims of the Society are:
- To produce a record of the habitats found within the parish and the species associated with them. This would allow species of particular importance to the community to be identified and protected. These might include, for example, dormice, water voles, lapwings, ancient woodland, water meadows or unimproved chalk grassland.
- To heighten awareness of the rich variety of wildlife found locally.
- To create opportunities for people to learn more about wildlife issues by organising activities which bring together existing local experts as well as bringing in outside experts in their field.
- To be a community initiative and help to foster good community relations.
- To involve local schools and provide valuable educational opportunities.
- To create a nature trail.
- To produce an Overton Biodiversity Action Plan.