Peter Seabrook celebrates 40 years at The Sun by reminding industry of "power of the press"

Addressing colleagues, friends and family, at a reception at London's Farmers Club, he said he started in the trade press in 1963 and at The Sun in 1977, and told them that "the remarkable power of the press" still impacts positively on readers, by they via magazine, newspaper, online or via podcasts.

He thanked the editors of the magazines he writes columns for, including Horticulture Week for allowing him to "express his views" to the industry and also Amateur Gardening, whose editor Tim Rumball is retiring to be replaced by Garry Coward-Williams.

He also thanked current Sun colleagues Steve and Val Bradley and garden centre owner Roger Dungey.

Seabrook said his four and a half years travelling as a peat sales representative under Mike Oliver early in his career were so valuable that he recommended everyone should spend time on the road selling. 

Seabrook is behind the HTA and garden industry 40 Sunbury Road Chelsea Flower Show garden for this May, which will include 100 growers and suppliers.

Bents Garden & Home, Mr Fothergill's, Seiont Nurseries, Hozelock, Wyevale Nurseries, Pinetops Nurseries, Kerley & Co, Thrive, Myerscough College, Squires Garden Centres and USP Creations.

The garden also celebrates Seabrook's 40 years at The Sun.

According to the HTA, 40 Sunbury Road - "a typical but modest suburban back garden" - will have living walls, a patio, decking, hanging baskets, containers, wildlife area, shed and greenhouse.

The containers and hanging baskets will include bedding and container plants grown by HTA members - garden centres, growers and seed trade.

There will be an area grown by schools that will include vegetables and wildlife-friendly plants. Westland Horticulture’s ‘Rising Stars’ will once again contribute the containers or baskets.

Trees and shrubs and other structural elements will come from HTA and APL members and garden product supplier members. 

The first joint industry Chelsea garden in 2016 featured 80 suppliers for Seabrook's 80th birthday.

Westland's Rising Stars programme, now in its ninth year, is giving participants the chance to work on a container for the garden at Chelsea.
The Northern Masterclass has kicked off at Barton Grange Garden Centre where Ian Boardman, IBBIS (UK) Director and Rising Stars facilitator gave hints and tips on how to drive sales, making every square metre of the garden centre count and improving customer shop-ability. The Southern Masterclass at Squires Badshot Lea also featured a special guest appearance from Seabrook.
Each Rising Star will now embark on their first project, transforming a space in their garden centre into a selling hotspot, which will inspire and educate customers while increasing sales. They will report back to the group in July with how they got on.
Keith Nicholson, marketing director for Westland Horticulture said: "Each year the Rising Stars evolves to create a better experience for those taking part. This year we’re giving participants the chance to take part in RHS Chelsea, something that will look great on any CV. We’ve also introduced a Whatsapp group to help them keep in contact with each other."

Rising Stars North

Rising Stars South

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