HAMPSHIRE naturalist Chris Packham has headed north along the River Itchen on a programme to be broadcast tomorrow.

Mr Packham explores his past as he walks from Southampton to Winchester Cathedral.

His journey stirs difficult memories from his own struggles with mental health. Walking with a hand-held 360-degree camera, he meets those who live, work and play in the area.

He discusses the joy that water brings to wild swimmers and also observes enthusiasts maintain centuries-old practices by flooding a meadow.

Along the way he reveals some of his difficulties of living with Asperger’s Syndrome.

The flooding of the water meadow takes place near Compton Lock. It was restored by Twyford Parish Council in 2000. The programme will show the flooding of the meadows in action.

Water meadows were flooded in the past because the relatively warm water from the Itchen when put on fields gave the grass early spring growth and an advantage over other areas as cattle could be put out to pasture earlier.

Twyford parish councillor Chris Corcoran said the film crew used a drone and will show the multiple channels being flooded to best effect.