Present: Chairman — Mr. J. Hardman
Hon Secretary Mrs. W. Akers
Treasurer _ Mr J.L. Akers
Standing Committee Messrs K. Eyre, M. Hainsworth, A. Hayward,
C. Marsh, R.Perraudin, and W.Tear
In addition over 70 members and guests were also present.
Chairman welcoming remarks
Mr John Hardman warmly welcomed the large number of members and guests from all parts of the country. The distances travelled included places as far afield as Inveresk, Scotland, Sidmouth in Devon, Southampton, Wales, Bristol, Tyne and Wear, Lincolnshire and all points between.
The publicity we’d had from the Gardeners World television programme had resulted in a huge increase in membership.
The two shows in May had gone well, the Annual Show had been well attended but he was disappointed that the Dutch Show attendance had been poor which was a pity since the number and quality of the flowers had been tremendous. Nevertheless it was a new venture and we would persevere.
Apologies for absence.
The secretary stated that a large number of apologies for absence had been received, far too many to read, mainly from new members who lived too far away to travel to Yorkshire.
She had decided to read one letter, as representative of the whole, due to its unusual reason given. This was from a gentleman who owned a very large tortoise which was booked for its annual check up at the vets. He’d tried to get someone else to take it but for some reason no one could be formed.
The minutes of the last years A.G.M. on 6th October 1990 were read.
With respect to the item on " discussion of preservation of breeders" Mr Jack Wenyss- Cooke asked for information for new members as to how far apart to grow the breeders from the broken tulips .
A short discussion ensued and various suggestions were put forward. The consensus was that it is still debatable point.
Mr. W. Tear reiterated his advice from his Newsletter article namely grow the breeders strongly and healthily with plenty of muck and they’ll resist breaking better.
The minutes were signed as a true record by the chairman
Correspondence and secretary’s Report
When she took on the job of secretary little did she know what was in store by way of correspondence in 1991
She related the strange chain of events which led to the Gardeners World item which featured the English Florist Tulip.
Timothy Clark a member of the society in Soham Cambridgeshire rote an article about Florists Tulips which he sold to E.M.A.P. who intende to publish it in "Plants and Gardens. Unfortunately the magazine folded but Ray Edwards the ex- editor of Plants and gardens thought the article deserved to be used somewhere so he showed it to Stephanie Silk the producer of Gardeners World. She was immediately very keen to include something about the Florist tulips in the programme and aske Timothy when the flowers would be out. He gave her a date and they fixed a slot in the schedule. Of course, then the spring turned really grey and cold and the flowers hung in bud for a fortnight causing chaos with the programme schedules.
At one point they were panicking and rang the society to ask if we had any members further south whose flowers were likely to be in bloom. In the end, the sun shone, the flowers came out and the programme went ahead. Stefan Buczaki who was presenting the programme was so delighted when he saw the flowers that he decided to make an appeal to more people to grow them with the result that letters flooded in to the secretary – around 700 — and enquiries are still coming in in October! The membership has gone in one leap from around 100 to 350 and the postman isn’t speaking to the secretary any more. That wasn’t the end of the story, the article is finally being published in "Period Living" for December.
She said it had been pleasing to be on the end of so much enthusiasm for keeping the Florist tulip going.
We must remember that the only reason they were still in existence was due to the efforts of local members who had doggedly perserved with growing them, sometimes these had dwindled to no more than a handful and there had been times when their survival was touch and go. Happily they are still around to delight us today in the 90’s and hopefully on a more secure footing.
The other event during the year was Lady Labouchères invitation to visit Dudmaston Hall in September to see the collection of 17th Century Dutch paintings of flower subjects. This had been a truly memorable day, Lord and Lady Labouchère had shown us round personally and invited us to take tea with them. A letter of thanks had been sent to the director Michael Chambers of the National Trust and the Labouchères along with a small selection of bulbs. Kate Swift had arranged the visit and escorted us round the estate and the Dingle.
Mr JL Akers tabled the statement of accounts for the year ending 30th September 1991 and went through it in detail.
The society was in good financial order and of course the support of new members subscriptions was significant.
Election of officers
Patrons were: Mr Victor Roozen
Mr. W.D. Tear
Vice Presidents are: Mr. N.H. Eyre
Mr. H.V. Calvert
Mr J.C. Hardman
Mr G.W. Gray
Mr J. Taylor
Miss B.D. Snape
Mr. P. Emmett
Mr. S. Knowles
Mr. C. Harrison
Mr. K.N. Eyre
Mr T Mills
Mr JL Akers
Mr C. Marsh
Mr. A. Hayward AGM 1989
Mr. K Eyre proposed and Mr. T. Mills seconded that Mr Timothy Clark become Vice- President to replace Lord Cochrane of Cults who had sadly passed away.
Carried unanimously The secretary — Mrs. W. Akers proposed to continue By Mr A. Robinson, seconded by Mr J Wenyss-Cooke. Carried The Treasurer — Mr JL Akers proposed to continue by Mr C.Harrison. seconded by Mr M. Hainsworth. Carried The Committee — Mr James Akers proposed that te committee be reelected en bloc, seconded by Mr M
Hainsworth T Mills. Mr. R. Perraudin stated thet he wished to step down since commitments prevented him from carrying out his duties.
JL Akers proposed Miss J.Eyre as a replacement — carried, and thanked Mr Perraudin for his interest and support in the past.
Mr. W. Tear proposed that another goblet be purchased for the prize of the most points at Dutch Show, seconded by Mr C. Marsh — carried Thanks were offered to Dr Kate Swift for her tremendous Help with her visit to Dudmaston Thanks were also offered to Mr W. Tear for his support,
Gold Medal gifts. He reminded new members that although unfortunately there weren’t a lot of English Florist tulips available they could show at the Dutch Show.
New members were encouraged to collect their box with Four bulbs from the back of the hall.
There was a short discussion on the best methods of cultivation and the best way of combating slugs.
English Florist Tulips Grown Today
Slides taken from 1987-1991 by Maurice Evans.
This gave new mwmbers a fairly comprehensive idea of The varieties of English florist tulips grown today.
Tea was then taken.
There then followed a discussion on the Aims of the Society
A document setting out the seven primary aims of the society was tabled and discussed.
Tulip Slides by Mr W. D. Tear These covered "growing in the 60’s — shows- Flower Decoration
Other Flowers by Mr. Maurice Evans. These included Crocus and Gentians.
The meeting closed at 5.30.pm