Dave Compton RIP
As many of you may know, sadly Dave Compton died in January.
For many, many years he spent around 45 hours a week at Old Winchester Hill, walking round it, becoming an expert on the birds, butterflies, flowers etc. and he took great pride in ensuring a high level of security in the car parks there. He was in effect a volunteer warden, as such he worked with the Police and was treated as part of their ‘team’ against those who were looking to break into cars to take whatever they might find. He had the local Police on speed dial, knew many of the ‘dodgy’ drivers and would let the Police know if he saw them. He said he was ‘well known to the Police, but in the best possible way!!’.
There can't be many birdwatchers who did not meet Dave when visiting Old Winchester Hill. He was always ready for chat and was the perfect gentleman. As well as patrolling Old Winchester Hill, for 25 years he patrolled West Meon, Beacon Hill and Exton as well.
Dave was well known in the area, and always had a friendly wave as he drove to and from Old Winchester Hill and around the area.
He was interviewed by The Petersfield Post in 2015, and explained how he had become involved with helping the Police and looking after Old Winchester Hill. Interview is in this link.
He received an award in 2016 for his services as a volunteer warden, presented by Murray Walker and the local Police Superintendant (picture above)
In 2018 he received the British Empire Medal for his voluntary work, the citation is below. These awards meant a great deal to him and he was delighted to let people see his B.E.M.
British Empire Medal
Central Chancery of the Orders of Knighthood
St. James’s Palace, London SW1
9 June 2018
THE QUEEN has been graciously pleased, on the occasion of the Celebration of Her Majesty’s Birthday, to approve the award of the British Empire Medal (Civil Division) to the undermentioned:
David Kenneth COMPTON
Volunteer Warden, Old Winchester Hill National Nature Reserve, Hampshire
For services to Nature Conservation.
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Old Winchester Hill, Warnford, Southampton, Hampshire, SO32 3LF