Suffolk Agricultural Association’s Gardening Conference

Suffolk Agricultural Association’s 10th Biennial Gardening Conference


Suffolk Agricultural Association’s 10th Biennial Gardening Conference

9.30am Registration and Coffee

10.00am Chairman’s Introduction – Stephen Fletcher, President of the SAA.

10.10am What is a Garden? – Edward Martin, Chairman of the SGT. Edward spent many years with Suffolk County Council specialising in prehistory and historic landscape studies. He has written and lectured widely on it. He will recount an archaeologist’s exploration of what makes a garden, how do we recognise one, what do we expect to find and, importantly, how are our expectations influenced by the changing needs, values, and beliefs of the society we live in. Defining the significance of gardens has been an important strand of the work of the Suffolk Gardens Trust over the past year as it has participated in a joint Gardens Trust and Historic England project entitled ‘Suffolk’s Unforgettable Garden story’ which aims to increase the number of registered Suffolk gardens.

11.15am A Lifelong Adventure with Gardening – Clare Matterson, CBE, Director-General of the Royal Horticultural Society. The RHS aims to support everyone on their lifelong adventure with gardening achieved through its 5 national gardens, 3 million visitors annually, community and education activities, horticultural expertise, and scientific research. Clare was previously Executive Director of Engagement at the Natural History Museum. At the Wellcome Trust for 17 years, Clare was Director of Strategy and of Culture and Society, and she co-founded the Wellcome Collection. Clare is chair of the First Light Festival in Suffolk and lives in Suffolk with her family and is involved with local community gardening.

1.30pm Garden Designers Open their Notebooks – James Alexander-Sinclair (garden designer, broadcaster, writer and Vice-President of the RHS) and Ann-Marie Powell (garden designer, TV presenter and author) have been designing gardens for quite a while now and have been first hand witnesses to the changes that have happened over the past couple of decades. They will tell stories of gardens they have designed, outlining how attitudes to gardens are changing and why both still love what they do. James is a well-known writer and he has been voted Garden Journalist of the year. His varied career in TV has included covering the Chelsea Flower Show. Ann-Marie Powell’s award-winning garden design practice has seen outdoor spaces as places with exciting possibilities for over 20 years. She and her team strive to design naturally energetic and bold landscapes to become havens for an abundance of insects and wildlife where her clients live in harmony, with the natural world.

Tickets: SAA and SGT members £55 per person, non-members £65, delegates under 30 years £30. Coffee on arrival. Two-course hot lunch. Tea afterwards. Trade stands.

Book online at OR, with a cheque, made payable to Suffolk Agricultural Association and sent to: Trinity Park, Felixstowe Road, Ipswich IP3 8UH. For further information call 01473 707112 or email