An amateur photographer has completed his challenge to visit all nature reserves run by Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Wildlife Trust (BBOWT) in 12 months.

Jon Mason toured 83 sites across the three counties to highlights how accessible wildlife is to residents.

His photos and videos, shared on Instagram, are now set to inspire a series of talks about his year filled with wild encounters with BBOWT.

Mr Mason, who lives with his family near Bledlow, Buckinghamshire, said: "There is no doubt that immersing yourself in nature is enormously healing in so many ways and an antidote to the hurtle of everyday life.

"Stress and tension just drain away.

"It would have been an interesting experiment to measure my blood pressure before and after each visit."

The geography teacher started his challenge on New Year’s Day 2023 by climbing up Chinnor Hill and savouring the first winter sunset of the year.

His subsequent visits were timed to coincide with seasonal highlights.

These included a trip to the trust’s Inkpen Crocus Field to witness the carpet of purple flowers at the start of spring, to Iffley Meadows in Oxford in April to view the popular snake’s-head fritillaries, and autumn explorations at Hog and Hollowhill Woods near Marlow to appreciate the golden beech leaves.

Mr Mason added: "It was thrilling to see a Dartford warbler fly up and sing from the top of a gorse bush at Greenham Common.

"I loved Gomm Valley on the edge of High Wycombe that was alive with butterflies and singing warblers such as whitethroats and chiffchaffs.

“There were so many highlights, such as finding a fly orchid at Warburg hidden away in the shade next to the path: so beautiful but could so easily have been completely overlooked."

Wherever possible, Mr Mason walked or took public transport to each reserve, thereby minimising his carbon footprint.

His final excursion was to Lamb’s Pool near Chipping Norton.

He documented his journeys by photographing each reserve and sharing them on Instagram and his website.

Estelle Bailey, chief executive of BBOWT, said: "We are so grateful to Jon for taking on this fantastic challenge and documenting it with his beautiful photos.

"He has highlighted the healing power of spending time in nature, which we know can help reduce blood pressure, stress hormones and anxiety."

Last year BBOWT kick-started its largest-ever appeal, The Nature Recovery Fund, aiming to raise £3 million in three years to address the local nature and climate crisis.

More information about BBOWT’s work can be found on the BBOWT website.