Richardson sets out case for amenity event

Johnsons of Whixley managing director Andrew Richardson is hoping to persuade the HTA to add a regular amenity growers' event to the yearly conference agenda.

Richardson, who is a past president of the HTA, said he did not attend the HTA's London conference (14-15 October) for the first time in many years because there was not enough for growers on the agenda.

Contact 2015 to be held at JCB headquarters in Rocester, Staffordshire, on 14-15 January 2015 will focus on the hardy nursery stock industry. However, Richardson said he is talking to HTA director Carol Paris to add another event.

At a recent HTA amenity suppliers group meting, he discussed adding an amenity get together to the calendar. "For the amenity side there is nothing at all," he said.

The HTA said it is focusing on January's Contact event for growers.

Lowaters Nursery managing director Ian Ashton, who is an HTA board member, said Contact was originally aimed at younger managers in the amenity and garden centre supply market.

He said the Garden Futures event has good contacts beneficial to growers and promotional activities. But he added that tagging an event onto the National Plant Show is an "opportunity".

The steering group for Contact is comprised of David Green (Chapel Cottage Plants), Alistair Hazell (Darby Nursery Stock), David Talbot (ADAS), Chris James (Wye Plants), Wayne Eady (Delamore), Raoul Curtis-Machin (HTA) and Emma Addy (JCB).

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