Tatsfield Horticultural Society

Minutes of the committee meeting

held at the Aileen McHugo building on Wednesday 12th October 2022

Present:- Jon Allbutt (JA)(Acting Chairman), Peter Maynard (PM)(Secretary), Martin Allen (MA)(Treasurer), Christine Stainer (CS)(Subscriptions Secretary), Bob David (BD)(President), Sue Warren (SW).

Apologies for absence

Pam Bishop (PB)(Chairman), Carol Gaskell (CG)(Show Secretary), Dilo de Alwis (DdA), John Rand (JoR)(Representing Tatsfield Parish Council), Janet Rand (JaR).

Minutes from last meeting held on 10th August 2022.

No amendments. The minutes were signed by JA.

Open Actions :- 2 items ongoing. All other items : done.

Review of Recent Events

Autumn Show, 10 September. Somewhat disappointing. Not as many entries or visitors as normal, which was not helped by proceedings being called to a halt at 4pm. Her Majesty the Queen had passed away a few days previously, and the show was, as a result, nearly cancelled. This probably had an effect on attendance. There was a minute’s silence at 4pm which was unfortunately not observed by everyone as no microphone was being used, and not everyone heard the announcement, neither could some people hear the remarks made by the presenter of prizes, Kim Jennings, the chairman of the Parish Council. There was also no report of the show in the Parish Magazine.

Plant Sale, 1 October. This was a special one-off event held at the request of Tatsfield Fairtrade group, who were holding a ‘Big Green Week’. Most items – including some very generously donated by Bryan Everest – were sold, even though there were not many customers present. Only a few of the committee were available to help, and it was agreed that an Autumn Plant Sale would not be a regular event unless many more of the committee were involved. THS made £143 profit.

Garden Club 11 October. Unfortunately, only 7 people attended JA’s talk on the THS visit to Wisley this year. Also, the WI have increased their hire fees to £35, so THS will make a loss of £28 plus what was spent on tea/coffee/milk.


See attached reports from MA. An audited copy of the accounts will be available at the AGM.

MA put forward the proposed budget for 2022/23. Many items had been reduced – eg both income and expenditure from sale and production of yearbooks – and the Treasurer predicted an overall loss of £215.

Forthcoming events

AGM 15th November. Nick Hagon (Chairman, Biggin Hill Horticultural Society) has accepted the invitation to speak at the Big Talk. He will not require dinner. The committee were asked to provide a plate of ‘nibbles’ each. MA will organise the drinks. Committee members were asked to arrive at about 7pm to set up. SW will invite the THS Vice-Presidents. JA agreed to give the Chairman’s Annual Report, if PB was unable to do so. MA to email tickets round to committee members.

Garden Club 7 February 2023. Agreed to have a quiz, which DdA had previously agreed to provide. MA to check whether this was still the case : if not, he would approach Terry Cartwright. Failing this, the committee would have to provide questions.

Garden Club 7 March 2023. Bryan Everest had agreed to speak, and had a ‘special subject’ in mind.

MA, All





Regular Updates

Subscriptions : CS – see attached report. Ricketts Hill (DdA) had not been done. CS will retrieve from him the yearbooks and sheets, and the round would be done by a working party from the committee.

TIB : JA reported that the village centre had been very colourful this summer, despite the excessively hot and dry weather, although the plants under the new noticeboard had not thrived. TIB had few volunteers, but especial thanks must go to Paul Stainer, who organised the watering rota. Funds were satisfactory, with less money being spent in 2022 because of Tatsfield’s non entry in Britain in Bloom, and the partial switch to using perennials rather than annuals.

Composting : no report from DdA. MA reported verbally. Allotmenteers continued to abuse the rules and, partly as a result of this, the composting site was almost overwhelmed. This is the only allotment site in the country with a dedicated composting facility, but this would have to be withdrawn from them. As well as this, the addition of wood chips to the compost gave a poorer product – some customers now refuse to use it – and made for more work. The addition of wood chips would have to stop. Also, as an eco-friendly measure, little water had been added to the bins and, in conjunction with the unusually hot and dry weather, this had virtually stopped decomposition. It was not known if DdA (who had not attended the site for much of the summer) would continue to lead it, or who would take over if he decided not to carry on.

Website : no report from DdA. MA reported verbally. MA was continuing to update the ‘old’ THS website, and DdA the ‘new’. However, no-one (apart from DdA) knew how to update the ‘new’ website, so it could not replace the ‘old’ website.



Donations of £100 to TIB and £50 to the Parish Magazine were authorised by the committee.



New Members for Committee

MA had approached Sue Rhule (not this year) and Sue Dowse (her husband might join in a year’s time). PM will approach Nigel Shaw, Elaine Winterbotham and Punith and/or Gunjan Dixit. JA will approach various people associated with gardening in Tatsfield.




Suttons Seeds had written to PM on August 15 explaining that the current group discount would be withdrawn at the end of August, and would be replaced at the end of September. However, they would not be offering discounts on ‘non live’ product, unlike previous years. No code had been received by the end of September, so PM phoned and was told that it would be available ‘in a week’. No code has yet been received and PM will chase them again.


Any Other Business

Engraving trophies costs THS about £400 per year. Some societies no longer engrave trophies for this reason. However, the general feeling was that engraving should continue, although this would be subject to confirmation at the AGM. PM will look for cheaper engravers.

JA requested that consideration of the yearbook for 2023/24 should start at the November 23rd committee meeting, rather than in January, as happened in 2022.

MA offered to arrange a Christmas meal – this was arranged but had to be cancelled in 2021 due to Covid-19 – and will email the committee with possible dates at tHE bAKERY.




Date of next meeting

The next meeting will be on Wednesday November 23rd 2022 at 7.30pm in the Parish Room at the Aileen McHugo building.