Societies & Associations
The Soil Association was formed in 1946 to create a better world – one where we farm responsibly, eat healthily and live in balance with the environment. Over the intervening 70 years we have championed organic farming and food, campaigned on a wide range of issues, innovated and delivered real change in the world. And now as a result of the EU referendum, our country faces crucial choices about how to shape the future of food, farming and the countryside.
Much has changed since the Soil Association was born in 1946. The world’s resources are being put under increasing pressure by intensive food and farming systems. Working with farmers, growers and researchers, we’re championing practical solutions to farming’s modern day challenges.
Everything we do champions organic principles and practice, to secure the health and vitality of people, farm animals and nature.
The Scottish Rock Garden Club was founded in Edinburgh in 1933 by a small group of enthusiasts who were interested in promoting the cultivation of alpine and rock garden plants. Originally formed to host meetings and shows, through the years the SRGC added a journal and conferences along with the international seed exchange.
Now a registered charity the Club has grown with thousands of enthusiastic members in 38 countries all around the world. The SRGC is the largest horticultural society in Scotland and considered by many to be the friendliest and most accessible in the World. The SRGC supports local Groups in many parts of Scotland and the North of England and is always open to helping form new groups.
The main remit of the SRGC is to spread the word and share the fascination for the plants at every level of expertise catering for all from the absolute beginner and the world’s top professionals at the same time.
The Salisbury Allotments Association is the perfect organisation for allotments holders and gardeners from novice to the most experienced. Holding monthly talks during the early spring and winter months covering a range of subjects.
A Trading Hut where you can purchase at competitive prices compost, fertilisers, manure, seed potatoes, onions, shallots, garlic, packet seeds, netting, fleece, canes (3ft to 8ft) and many other garden sundries. The Trading Hut is situated at Fisherton Recreation Ground off Coldharbour Lane, Salisbury. It is open Saturdays and Sundays between spring and autumn. Ample free parking.
An Annual Summer Horticultural Show held in August covering vegetables, fruit, flowers, cookery, handicrafts, flower arranging, wines and cordials, art and a children’s section is open to non-members as well as members. It’s a fun day so whether you are exhibiting or just coming along to sample the atmosphere and see the exhibits you are guaranteed a very warm welcome.
Outings for members and non-members are organised during the year which include visiting Flower Shows, Stately Homes and Gardens also RHS Gardens. These are all very competitively priced.
A quarterly newsletter is produced with information about the activities of the Association and gardening snippets.
The Royal Horticultural Society was founded in 1804, and our core objective is to be the world’s leading gardening charity by inspiring passion and excellence in the science, art and practice of horticulture. In everything we do, we will aim to use our guiding principles.
Our strategic objectives
1. Be known, loved and trusted as the charity for all gardeners
2. Safeguard and advance the science, art and practice of horticulture for the benefit of future generations and the environment
3. Transform communities through gardening
4. Create world-leading horticulture that inspires people to garden
4. Nurture and grow our membership throughout the UK
6. Provide a voice for all gardeners, sharing and building expert knowledge
7. Delight our customers with exceptional service and products
8. Be a great place to work where everyone makes a difference
9. Have efficient business practices that deliver maximum income for our charitable purpose
10.Make horticulture a career to be proud of.
We want to enrich everyone’s life through plants and make the UK a greener, more beautiful place.
The Royal Forestry Society has a diverse membership of 3,500+ members including woodland owners, professional foresters, arborists, countryside professionals, conservationists, lecturers, students and people with an active interest in learning about the care of woods and trees. Everybody is welcome. We do not represent the interests of any single group and so are a source of unbiased information for anyone caring for woodlands.
The work of the RFS is funded through donations, grants, legacies and corporate sponsorship, together with membership subscriptions.
The Lily Group is the oldest of the RHS plant groups of the Royal Horticultural Society and is based in London, UK. Formed as a Committee in 1931 and as a Group in 1932, we celebrated our seventy fifth anniversary in 2007.
Lilies in the wild are distributed across the Northern hemisphere- China, Korea, Japan, Siberia, Asia, the Caucasus, Europe and North America. Yet given the right conditions they will grow in many other parts of the world. It is a love of Lilies and the challenge to grow them which unites the Group’s few hundred members of all ages, of whom approximately a third are from overseas. Apart from the UK they are scattered throughout Europe, in Canada and the USA, in Australia, Tasmania and New Zealand, in Japan and Asia. Thus the potential for exchange of knowledge and seed is considerable.
The North of England Horticultural Society (NEHS) is a leading gardening charity set up more than 100 years ago to support and promote horticulture across the north. The society organises and runs the twice yearly Harrogate Flower Shows, widely regarded as the biggest and most prestigious independent shows in the gardening year.
Both the spring and autumn events host a range of ‘shows within a show’ enabling dozens of specialist gardening groups to hold their annual shows, promote their work and recruit new members, free of charge. From dahlias to daffodils and bees to bonsai, the specialist societies have become an integral part of our events, including the National Vegetable Society (NVS) and the National Association of Flower Arrangement Societies (NAFAS).
Profits from the Harrogate Flower Shows are handed back to the NEHS, to enable the charity to continue its important work in promoting horticulture. In 2012 the society launched a new grants programme to provide funding for community projects in the north of England. More than 70 groups have since benefited from grants, adding to the range of financial support already provided for gardening organisations, such as the Chartered Institute of Horticulture’s ‘Young Horticulturalist of the Year’ Competition.
Norfolk Organic Group is a membership organisation of about 200 gardeners, smallholders, farmers and others interested in organic food.
We are affiliated to and act as a local group for Garden Organic, the national charity for organic growing (formerly the Henry Doubleday Research Association (HDRA), www.gardenorganic.org.uk) and the Soil Association,who campaign for planet-friendly food and farming (www.soilassociation.org).
Norfolk Organic Group aims to promote the organic movement in Norfolk by encouraging people to grow organically and to use resources sustainably, maintaining the link between people, food and the soil.
For nearly 90 years Newton-le-Willows Gardeners’ Association has been working for the benefits of local gardeners with a membership of about 650 in and around Newton-le-Willows, Merseyside, in the United Kingdom. The main attraction for members is our shop on the Rob Lane Allotments site in Newton (generally known as the “Sales Hut”) where composts, fertilizers, and many other gardening requisites can be purchased at very competitive prices.
We also hold a Flower & Vegetable Show in September each year and there are monthly lectures or demonstrations on a variety of horticultural topics. Coach trips are arranged to major flower shows, stately homes, famous gardens, or other places of interest.
Members receive two newsletters each year and the annual membership fee is £4.00
Our origins are uncertain, but the general belief is that it probably all started with the formation of an Allotments Association during the First World War.
The Sweet pea came to the UK in 1699 so in 1899 it was decided by some prominent horticulturists to celebrate this popular flower. The bicentenary exhibition was held at Crystal Palace, London on 20-21 July 1900. It was a tremendous success and prompted the inauguration shortly after of the National Sweet Pea Society.
The society’s first exhibition was held in the new Methodist Central Hall Westminster on 25-26 July 1901. At this show the first Spencer variety was unveiled with much longer stems and larger, frilly flowers.
Over the years regular exhibitions have seen the introduction of countless new varieties. From 1905, the society decided to publish an annual booklet to record the developments of the year and this has continued (with the exception of 1941-43) every year since. The NSPS Annual includes a great diversity of articles and remains our flagship publication. Sample articles from the 2016 Annual are reproduced via links in the Membership section.
The society expanded its publications in 1939 to issue four bulletins a year. The number and size of bulletins has varied over the years but now stands at two per year.
The Society’s objects remain:
To disseminate knowledge of Sweet Peas and other Lathyrus species,
To encourage, improve and extend the cultivation of these flowers by means of scientific trials, the holding of exhibitions and displays, by publications and other actiivities.