From The Chair

This is my first year as your Chairman having been the Vice Chairman for the last few years. I take over from Tom who spent thirty years being involved with all aspects of the association. For those who were not able to attend his memorial service, the church was full to overflowing with family/friends/admirers and fellow gardeners and growers. He left a lasting legacy that together we can build on. An association means a body of people associated for a common purpose, in our case that means working together as a group to help each other achieve our goals be it the best carrot/cabbage/bean or exotic flower and hopefully display these at our two shows. As a lasting tribute to Tom’s contribution his family are donating a trophy in his honour. With their agreement the committee has decided that this should be for the Orchid class as detailed in the show specification catalogue. As this will be the first year of it being awarded, it would be very fitting if we made this the best turn out in that class.

We have also been very fortunate in having Susan Appleyard take over the arranging of talks. She intends to focus on gardening and allotment subjects so please give her your support at the forthcoming talks and visits.

As a final point and one that is essential to our wellbeing as an association,could members ensure their membership fee is up to date so that the treasurer can balance the books. Douglas McCowan, Chairman

 School ReportSit up straight and pay attention! The school Gardening club will be re-starting on first Monday back after half term. We have lots of seeds to sow and a spring clean in the garden and greenhouse.Garlic and shallots are already growing in the greenhouse. The roots on the garlic are so strong they have pushed out the cloves! Also this term the children will be getting their entries ready for the Spring show hopefully creating lots of lovely collages of spring flowers, decorating plant pots and designing a bird table. Just need some sunshine to warm the soil and greenhouse.Happy growing everyone! Gill and Jane

Newtown Society Shop To help members, the shop will now be open each Sunday from the 26th February until the end of June, 0930 hrs until 1100hrs. We have a wide selection of good quality compost/treatments and fertilisers.

Price comparison:

B&Q Miracle Grow Compost – 50 litres = £6.94.    Our top quality compost – 80 litres = £6.40

B&Q Westland Bone Meal – 1.5kg for £4.97 = £3.31 per kg.  Our bone meal – 5kgs for £4 = 80p per kg.

The current wet & windy weather making sites unworkable, need some Spring sunshine.

Vacant allotments Silsden Road, Stamp Hill and Lower Stamp Hill.

 John Bottomley, Shop & Allotments Manager.

Secretarys blog

    We have welcomed a new Committee Member Linda Whitehead this year but have lost Jackie Carpenter who we are sorry to lose.  She has said she will help us still wherever she can.  Thanks very much to Jackie after serving the past few years. Her help has been appreciated.We have Pat Inman speaking about Good Garden Plants on March 23rd.   Our final fun night will be a Quiz night on April 27th with John Tolan.  A very popular night. Susan Appleyard has next season programme in hand and has some interesting ideas.

The village Library is undergoing refurbishment and our Allotment books have had to be packed away due to lack of space in the portacabin.  These will be available as soon as we reopen. Please contact me if there is a special book you would like and I will do what I can.       Carol Hindle, Secretary

Society Garden Visit

We’re planning a trip to THORNTON HALL GARDENS in County Durham this

 summer. Thornton Hall was built in 1550 and originally had walled gardens. By the time Mike and Sue Manners bought it in 1989 it was a working farm and what had once been three walled gardens had become just paddocks grazed by cattle and sheep.Other than the walls there were no traces left of the original gardens.

In 1995, without any gardening knowledge at all, Sue decided to try to make a garden in the first paddock.Amazingly she removed all the grass by hand and then began to create narrow borders against the stone walls. Eventually as she became more knowledgeable she started to widen the borders adding to the planting and gradually became completely hooked. As time went on she began to build a pond and island beds, and eventually extended the garden into the other two paddocks as well.

 In the summer months the garden is a riot of colour with huge selections of roses,clematis, hosta, peonies and heucheras as well as hundreds of other herbaceous plants, shrubs, and trees. More recently she has created a large vegetable garden adjacent to the flower gardens.

Sue’s garden has been called ‘one of Britain’s finest new gardens’ and she’s even had a visit from Prince Charles.

 On nine selected dates during May. June and July Sue opens her gardens to the public with all proceeds going to charity.

 So, our visit will be on WEDNESDAY 5th JULY and if we can fill a 52 seater coach the cost including admission to the garden will be 17.50.

 There’s a cafe specially created for the open days which sells lunches,sandwiches, cakes and drinks and all the food is home made. There are also home grown plants for sale.It’s an absolutely glorious garden and I can promise you won’t be disappointed !  Sue Appleyard, Trip Co-ordinator contact 01943 839292 email:


Spring Show.  This year the show will be held on Saturday 8th April. Entries have steadily increased the last few years but we need more so please make every effort to conjure up an exhibit. This year will see the new Tom Benstead Orchid Trophy competed for so give your plants some spit and polish and get them entered!  

There will be a display of the beautiful Primula family of Auriculas, (subject to weather and flowering conditions on the day), kindly put together by Jeff Walbank and his colleague. Look out for some stunning blooms.  Schedules currently being distributed at the Talks, Allotment Shop and later at Addingham newsagents.  Classes are also listed on the website above.

Annual Show.  To be held on Saturday 12th August.  Schedules will be ready in good time. You will be advised when and when the classes go onto the website.

Ramon Porter,  Show Secretary,