Benefits of Membership
Membership provides the chance to learn about wildlife, archaeology and geology in a friendly, informal atmosphere in the company of like-minded people. The annual membership offers extremely good value for money.
We have an extensive programme of events ranging from illustrated talks by experts, guided visits to places of interest, including occasional mainland visits, gentle rambles looking at nature and more specialised meetings of small groups to study mammals, birds, insects, plants, fungi, fossils or archaeology. There is, on average, at least one meeting most weeks of the year.
Membership application form (85Kb, PDF )
We produce a number of publications. All members receive a bi-annual, illustrated Bulletin which keeps them in touch with what’s going on. The new style Bulletin has been well received containing all sorts of interesting snippets, natural history observations and anecdotes as well as reports on recent meetings. All members are encouraged to contribute. In addition, members receive annually, an illustrated Bird report (produced jointly with the Isle of Wight Ornithological Group) and Wight Studies, our journal which includes yearly reports of mammals, insects, galls, marine life, plants and fungi together with longer scientific papers relevant to the Island. There are frequently interesting papers on the Island’s history and historic landscapes. We also produce occasional, one-off publications on a variety of topics.
This Spring the Society moved its HQ from Ventnor to
where we have temporary offices on an industrial estate. This has restricted access to some of our archive material because of the resulting storage problems. The essential work of the Society continues however, thanks to the work of our dedicated members.
We have an extensive library of reference books and field guides covering all aspects of wildlife, together with Island history, geology and archaeology. Many of these are available for loan by members. The Society archives, together with field note books and diaries of eminent past members of the Society, are held in the library. There are also runs of a number of different journals including those exchanged with natural history societies and field clubs elsewhere in the country.
We have a large library of photographic and other material held in digital form. It includes historical images, like maps and contemporary photographs, and documentation of many of the activities of the Society. Perhaps most importantly, it is a very extensive locally sourced data holding of visual records of the flora and fauna of the Island, consisting of everything from simple photographs to high-resolution scans and microscopy. Collectively, all this forms an important resource for research and education.
The Society headquarters hold some items, such as microscopes and collecting equipment, which may be available as a loan for special studies.
As a scientific society the accurate recording of all the different groups of plants and animals is an important part of what we do. The Society headquarters holds the Island’s main species database where all records are aggregated. This, calling on a system of distributed databases, holds many thousands of Island records of plant and animal species. The records are kept up to date by field observations each year and help to inform policy concerning conservation issues. They are the principal source of information about the biodiversity of the Isle of Wight and we supply, through an agreement, the majority of the records relied upon by the Local Records Centre of the Isle of Wight Council.
The original Newtown Camp group. © Anon
Chatting at the Newtown Exhibition, in 2008. © GT
Our stand at Woolverton © CP
At Society HQ © CP