WINCHESTER Cathedral's peregrine cameras have been switched on for the new year.

Last week the cathedral's virger Ian James confirmed that the nest had been cleaned and the female Winnie had been spotted.

Writing on the cathedral website, Mr James said: “As the days lengthen and the temperatures begin to rise, the early virger opening up the cathedral estate starts to look for signs of the returning peregrines. From early in the morning they can often be heard and sometimes seen in a flash.

Hampshire Chronicle: Elizabeth on the cathdral roof, photo: Steve Grundy

“Last year, after the successful fledge of two chicks, one of them persistently stayed around the cathedral until late into the autumn.

“Our role enables us to get up as close as possible to these magnificent creatures and it never fails to leave me anything other than amazed.

“We hope 2023 with bring us positives in the nesting season and success in with a number of fledgings. Enjoy the camera feeds.”

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This time last year, Winnie was lamenting the loss of her partner Chester. But then a new partner emerged, William.

Winnie had two chicks last year, named Elizabeth and George, who flew the nest in August.

Keith Betton, chairman of the Hampshire Ornithological Society, has been monitoring the peregrines over the last few years.

Hampshire Chronicle: Winnie and her new mate, William (Picture/Winchester Cathedral)

Mr Betton, 62, said: “Winnie has been guarding the area to make sure no other peregrines take her patch. There has been no sign of William yet, but hopefully we'll see him soon. Winnie will lay her eggs between March 10 and 20.

“She will lay about four eggs and incubate them for one month. Six weeks after they hatch, they will start to stretch their wings. Then by the end of June they'll be flying around and will stay in the area until the end of the summer.”

To watch the two cathedral peregrine cameras, visit: