Harris served under successive NFU central horticultural chairmen and horticultural development and education sub-committee chairman Herman Baarda.
He was a modest individual, never seeking personal publicity and described by many he met as a "true gentleman". He was always willing, if asked, to assist organisations promoting British horticultural produce.
The first BGLA in 1965 was intended to help glasshouse growers prepare and plan for modernisation. The two-day event with 37 exhibitors quickly changed into a major international conference and exhibition, covering the whole horticultural sector. By the late 1970s there were more than 200 exhibitors, many from overseas, with emphasis not only on production but also on marketing, research and education.
In spite of the complexity of his work, Harris made time for his love of both cricket and the countryside. He was also a strong and regular supporter of the Honourable Artillery Company, but above all a strong believer of the importance of British horticulture to the UK economy.