Overton past the source of the Test

A short history of Overton

Overton is a large village and parish in Hampshire, located west of the town of Basingstoke and east of Whitchurch.

The village contains many smaller hamlets: Southington, Northington, Ashe, Polhampton and Quidhampton. The River Test rises about a mile east of Overton at Ashe. The River Test is a chalk stream world-famous for its trout fishing. It is generally regarded as the birthplace of modern fly fishing.


    • Route
    • Temporarily closed
    • Restricted use


Turn right out of the car park and take the first road on the left onto Waltham Road. Continue until just past the last house and take the footpath on the left, which is just after a right-hand bend. The path ends at a gate at Berrydown Farm where there is a choice.

(a)Turn left along Berrydown Lane, cross the B3400 onto Straight Lane. Ignore the footpath on the right and continue to a cross path. Take the left path, crossing to the corner of the field. Turn left up hill until the corner of the sports field is reached. Turning right takes you back to the car park.

(b)Turn right at Berrydown Farm and go along the concrete track until it passes a footpath sign on the right, and as the concrete track bears right go left along the path on the edge of the woods until a kissing gate is reached. Pass through this and almost immediately another. Go up the field bearing slightly right heading for the right-hand edge of trees that can be seen in the distance. Exit the field through a kissing gate onto Burley Lane.

Turn left and go down the lane until the B3400 is reached. Cross straight over and continue to Ashe Church. Turn left at the church and left again just past a farm pond (often dry). Almost immediately turn right through a gateway and follow the track to a kissing gate. (The lake on the left is the source of the River Test).

On passing through the kissing gate, head towards a field boundary corner on the right, then continue to cross the field in the same direction to a stile and a small footbridge across the stream. Head slightly left and straight ahead up the hill and across the field until Straight Lane is reached.

Cross over and continue in the same direction, crossing to the corner of the field. Turn left up hill until the corner of the sports field is reached. Turning right towards Overton Hill housing estate, cross the road and follow the tarmac path past the children’s playground back to the car park.