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Watts Bank

Watts Bank is a sunny, chalk grassland slope that provides ideal conditions for wild flowers and at least 16 different species of grass.


This small reserve on a steep southwest slope is part of a larger wildlife site named after the adjacent track from Lambourn, the White Shute By-way. Fragments of wildflower-rich chalk grassland, like Watts Bank, have usually survived because they are situated on a hill or earthworks which are unsuitable for ploughing.

Butterfly haven

This grassland hillside is a natural sun trap, sheltered from wind by patches of scrub at each corner. It is very attractive to butterflies, with an impressive 32 species recorded, including chalkhill blue, green hairstreak, brown argus and dingy skipper. They fly amongst the wild flowers and at least 16 species of grass including quaking-grass, whose purplish-green flowers dance delicately in the breeze. Hazel, blackthorn and bramble scrub provide shelter for many small birds.

Things to do

Download the site risk assessment.

Nearby nature reserves

Seven Barrows
3 miles - Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Wildlife Trust
Ramsbury Meadow
5 miles - Wiltshire Wildlife Trust
High Clear Down
6 miles - Wiltshire Wildlife Trust

Nature reserve map

Please join your local wildlife trust today

Please join your local wildlife trust today

Please join your local wildlife trust today

Reserve information

Just south of Lambourn
8 miles south-west of Wantage
RG17 7LE
Map reference
SU 3308 7717
Great for...
stunning views
Best time to visit
Mar - Aug
Get directions
Find out here
Public transport
Plan your journey
Opening Times
Open at all times
1.50 hectares
Walking information
Steep slope; rough, sloping ground, no paths; stile, gate
Park near to Lambourn school just south of Lambourn on the hard verge, 1 mile from reserve
Guide dogs only
Grazing animals
Reserve manager
Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust (BBOWT)
Tel: 01628 829574

Smartphone Safari

Every weekend on BBC Radio Berkshire and BBC Radio Oxford we broadcast a Smartphone Safari. Listen along as we explore some of our fantastic reserves and introduce you to the wildlife you can see.