The River Test

river Test
Guide to the River Test.
The River Test is regarded as one of the most famous fly-fishing chalk streams in the UK, having been referenced in several books.

It offers some of the most beautiful, crystal clear waters in England, along with fighting-fit wild trout, grayling and Salmon.

The Path of the River Test

The River Test starts its 40 mile journey in a small village called Ashe, in Hampshire. It initially flows west southwest, winding past the villages of Quidhampton, Overton, Laverstock and Freefolk, before arriving at the town of Whitchurch.

Leaving Whitchurch behind the Test heads southwest passing the hamlet of Tufton, after which the river splits into two and then rejoins about half a mile downstream. The Bourne Rivulet joins the flow at Testbourne and the river continues southwest, passing the villages of Longparish, Middleton and Forton.

Downstream of Forton, the river flows under the A303 and continues about a mile downstream before splitting into two main channels. The north part of the river heads off to flow down the eastern flank of the village of Wherwell, while the southern channel of the river receives one of the Weir's tributaries, the River Dever, before rejoining the northerly channel south of Wherwell, near the village of Chilbolton.

Just downstream of Chilbolton, near the village of Fullerton, another tributary of the River Test, the River Anton, joins the flow. The river continues in a south southwesterly direction passing between the villages of Longstock Park and Leckford, then on past the villages of Longstock, Stockbridge, North houghton, Houghton, Bossington and Horsebridge.

Around 2 and a half miles downstream of Bossington, near the village of Kimbridge, the River Dun joins the Test from the west. After leaving Kimbridge the river heads in a southeasterly direction, flowing near the villages of Timsbury, Awbridge and Abbotswood before entering the market town of Romsey from the north.

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The River Test takes on a more southerly course and once again splits as it flows down the western flank of Romsey, before merging once more at the southwest of the town.

The Test follows its southerly course, passing near the villages of Romsey Extra and Ashfield before entering the city of Southampton. As it enters the city, the Hillyfields area is on the east bank and the village of Testwood is on the western bank.

At Testwood, the River Test's flow has been utilised to create the Testwood Lakes Wildlife Reserve, which includes several lakes along with wetlands and attracts a wide variety of wildlife.

Downstream of Testwood the river starts to widen and the River Blackwater joins from the west. The River Test becomes the River Test Estuary and meets up with the River Itchen Estuary to become Southampton Water.

Species of fish found in the River Test include:

Fishing Clubs & Societies with fishing rights on the River Test

River Test Counties & Tributaries

  • Flows through counties:
    • Hampshire
  • Tributaries include:
    • Bourne Rivulet
    • River Dever
    • River Anton
    • River Dun
    • River Blackwater
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