MORE than 200 families took part in Alresford’s first ever ‘Wildlife Week’.

Children learnt about local wildlife through completing a 'Wildlife Quest' which required them to collect items from the surrounding countryside and stickers from local shops.

Families were also treated to eight days of free wildlife-related activities including bird feeder making and wildlife colouring.

The week, during half-term, was put together by Winchester City Council’s Market Towns Support Officer, Kat Lemon, with financial support from The Southern Co-operative, Alresford Chamber of Commerce and 10 local businesses.

It involved local charities and organisations such as the Cubs, the Guides and Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, who all organised activities.

Children particularly enjoyed meeting Wisdom the Barn Owl who was brought along by The Barn Owl Project Hampshire.

Winchester City Council’s Market Towns Development Officers organise a range of town centre based event throughout the year including the Easter Egg Hunt, the Alresford Face Finding Mission and the Alresford Ghost Hunt.

These projects are undertaken in collaboration with New Alresford Town Council and several local organisations under the umbrella of “Altogether Alresford”.

Cllr Rob Humby, portfolio holder for business partnerships, economy & arts and tourism, said: “This innovative activity is a great example of how city council officers are constantly developing new ways of supporting local businesses and communities”.

Wendy Tester, whose children complete the Wildlife Quest, said: “Thanks for organising something fun and free for children to do in Alresford. A great way to get people into some of the unique and local businesses in the town”

Lisa Griffiths, Councillor for Alresford and Itchen Valley said: “It’s especially enjoyable to see families out in Alresford during the school holidays, engaging in the fun events organised by the Market Town Development Team. It’s so important that there are free activities which get them outside and great they are learning about what’s around them.”

1. The image shows children with Wisdom the barn Owl and Kim Boog-Penman from Barn Owl Project Hampshire & Bird Of Prey Hospital