The conference was preceded by the Institute’s AGM at which Leigh Morris was appointed as the new IoH president.
He said: "I am totally delighted to have taken on the role of IoH President. With the petition for Chartered status recently submitted, and a marketing plan and recruitment strategy being drafted and the current ramping up of the Grow Careers initiative, it is certainly exciting times immediately ahead, both for myself and the IoH."
Lord Taylor of Holbeach, former Defra Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, delivered the IoH James Bruce Memorial. He said" "Horticulture is hot. There is huge potential for British horticulture but to be the best the industry needs "investment, innovation, technology, research and skills."
TV gardener David Domoney suggested representing horticultural careers to reflect "K-KPI’s Kids Key Performance Indicators – money; self-respect; respect among peers, excitement and the keys to independence"
Coblands MD Gerald Bonner gave tips on recruiting and retaining horticultural apprentices highlighting the need to invest in apprentices’ terms and conditions, including their studies, and keeping apprenticeships relevant, reflecting the contemporary demands of young horticulturists.
Delegates also visited the recently restored Myddelton House Gardens. After dinner speaker Phil Askew, project sponsor parklands and pubic realm, London Legacy Development Corporation, gave an insight into the future of the Olympic Park.
The conference was sponsored by Coblands, Horticulture Week and the HTA.