Ornithological Club


Forthcoming field trips           No Dogs Please


Devereux Farm, Norton Canon
February 16th Thursday

Meet at Devereux Farm (SO386:485) at 9.30am. By kind permission of Mr Patrick Wrixon. It is located on the left side of the B4230 road, running from Norton Canon to Weobley about half a mile from the junction. The farm is mixed arable and pasture, has had higher level stewardship which is now undergoing a period of change. The farm provides cover and habitat for a good variety of farmland birds. Moderate to easy gradients. This will be a morning only visit with a possibility of a further visit to a nearby location for anyone who is interested. Lunch in cars, moderate gradients, no dogs please.

Leader: Gerald Parker (tel: 01432 760023)

Ashleworth and Coombe Hill

March 8th Wednesday

Meet at Ashleworth Ham (SO827:262) at 10.00am. (in order to avoid Hereford traffic) Turn south off the B4213 at the crossroads at Tirley for approximately 11⁄4 miles Park on roadside adjacent to hide. Followed by a move to GWT nature reserve at Coombe Hill (SO 886:272) for an early picnic lunch and post-lunch walk. Bring gum boots. Please contact the leader a couple of days before the event which will be dependent upon the state of winter flooding. No dogs please.

Leader: Chris Bartlett (tel: 01989 721080)

A date to be advised between April 1st and 15th. The purpose of this meeting is to find ring ouzels on passage at a location where they have noted during the last two years (2015/16). The meeting date will be between April 1st and 15 depending on the ring ouzels appearance and will be posted on the HOC website, alternatively ring JRP on 01600 750266. Meet at 09.30am at Garway Hill car park (SO 444: 247), other possible birds likely to be seen are; tree pipit, redstart, wheatear, skylark and yellowhammer. Moderate gradients, no dogs please.
Leader: John Pullen (tel: 01600 750266)

Pengethley and Sellack

April 27th Thursday

Meet at Kynaston House, Hentland (SO543:272) satnav - HR9 6LP at 10.00am where adequate parking will be provided for a leisurely walk around Pengethley Park. This is National Trust land and contains many mature trees hosting a good cross section of farmland birds and hopefully spring migrants. Lunch will be consumed back at the cars. Afterwards we will travel a short distance by car to Sellack and park adjacent to the church (SO565:276) for a walk along the side of a valley and back through woodland, or alternatively along the side of the river Wye. Easy to moderate gradients, no dogs please.

Leader: Robert Taylor (tel: 07713 412063)

Dawn chorus; Moreton wood and surrounding farmland

May 13th Saturday

Meet at 5.30am - take the minor road off the A417 which travels through Ullingswick at SO 593:493. Turn off the road and travel along a gravel track for 450m where you will find a woodland open area on your left for car parking at SO 595:489. The walk will involve flat areas and hilly slopes and can be muddy in places if wet, so suitable footwear should be worn. We should have plenty of summer woodland and farmland birds to hear and see. We are expecting to finish around 8-9am, no dogs please. Please let the leader know if you are coming so that we can car share if possible.

Leader: Nick Smith (tel 07831 730676) 

Castleton and Merbach hill

May 20th Saturday

Meet in lay-by on B4352 Hereford to Hay-on-Wye road 3.5 miles west of Bredwardine (SO 285:452) above the lane to Castleton at 9.30am for a walk around this very interesting part of the river Wye to look for spring migrants. Afterwards we will have lunch in cars back at the lay-by. This will hopefully be followed by a walk onto Merbach Hill which offers excellent views across the Wye valley.

Leader: John Davies (tel 01432 760337) and Gerald Parker (tel 01432 760023)

Gilfach NR (nr Rhayader)

June 8th Thursday

Meet at the Pont Marteg car park on the right after crossing the cattle grid upon leaving the A470 (SN 952:715) sat nav LD6 5LF at 9.30am. Take the A470 north from Rhayader for approx 3 miles. Look for brown bird sign and turn right for St Harmons on a long left hand bend. Radnor Wildlife Trust reserve comprises beautiful oak woods, open hillside, river and hills. Spring migrants include pied flycatcher, wood warbler and redstart with also the possibility of raptors and tawny owl. Morning walk about 3 miles moderate gradients. Lunch in cars at centre where there are toilets, a picnic area and light refreshments available. Followed by a shorter afternoon walk, no dogs please. Please contact the leader if going for car sharing purposes.

Leader: Gerald Parker (tel: 01432 760023)

HOC contribution to Hereford Walking Festival: Garway Hill area

June 21st Wednesday

Meet at White Rocks (SO440:245) at 10am where vehicle parking is provided. Directions: From Hereford take the A49 south, at the top of the Callow hill turn right onto the A466 signed Wormelow and Monmouth, after approximately seven miles. Turn right onto the B4521at Broad Oak, after approximately one and a half miles turn right again signed Garway. Just as you pass through the village turn right for Garway Hill, after approximately two miles turn left to White Rocks. This is a circular walk of about three and a half miles, from White Rocks we will walk to the summit where there is a telecoms mast, descend through woods to Fairhouse Farm, return by the Sun and Lower Castre. This is a moderate guided walk and moderate levels of fitness are required. There may be some steep or difficult sections. Estimated time of finish is 13.15. It is hoped to find a good cross section of upland birds on our way. Lunch can be carried or eaten on return to the cars if preferred. No dogs please.

Leader: John Pullen (tel: 01600 750266)

Croft Castle and Bircher Common

July 13th Thursday

Meet at Croft Castle car park by kind permission of the National Trust (SO451:655) satnav HR6 9PW at 9.30am for a walk along Fishpool Valley, through woodland and part of Bircher Common looking for summer migrants and any specials that may be around. Some sections of the walk can be strenuous. Carry lunch, no dogs please. Would NT members please have their membership cards to hand as they have kindly waived the admission charge to non members. However, a donation to the trust will be gratefully received.

Leader: Mervyn Davies (tel: 01981 590298)


When meetings are outside the county and in times of adverse weather conditions, please contact the leader for an update.

For extra information about any field meeting contact the meeting leader or the meetings secretary, G R Parker. Ordnance Survey map references are given and members should take suitable food, clothing, a first-aid pack (and a torch for evening meetings) or as advised. Leaders are always pleased to welcome and help new members. Walks may be graded, such as: Easy (slight gradients), Moderate (medium gradients), Hard (steeper/longer gradients) and Difficult (only for the really fit).

Dogs should not be taken to any of the Field Meetings.

CAR-SHARING TO DISTANT MEETINGS:  The Committee suggests that distant meetings would be more environmentally friendly if some members would share cars for the journey. There would of course be a reduction in costs for any travelling members who participate in such a scheme. Please enquire with the meeting Leader or the Meetings Secretary next time you would like to join a Club outing to far off parts!

THE LEADER:  Leaders of Field Meetings have the right to abandon or change the meeting if in their opinion weather or some other factor would cause a hazard or render the venue unsuitable for the purpose on the day. Please make yourself known to the Leader on arrival. Should you wish to leave the party for any reason during the meeting do make this known to the Leader.

Herefordshire Ornithological Club is a registered charity England and Wales number 1068608