Horticultural Society

About the society


The Cholesbury-cum-St Leonards Horticultural Society is one of the oldest Societies in the villages, being established back in the nineteen-thirties. The Society is affiliated to the Royal Horticultural Society, which entitles us to a variety of benefits including visits to RHS gardens and the privilege of awarding an RHS Banksian Medal at the annual show.

A history of the society and its awards is available here.

Currently we have about one hundred members spread through the villages. Members enjoy a 10% discount at South Heath Garden Centre, South Heath. We also organise evening visits to private gardens that are restricted to members only. Members receive a 10p discount for each class entry in the Show! We are in the process of trying to negotiate further local discounts.

The main event of our year is the Annual Show – open to all comers. We have classes including flower arranging, vegetables, photography, craft, cookery and wine making plus a whole section for children of varying ages – full details are in the Schedule published each year. The entries have to be in situ by 9:45  on the morning of the Show.

The judging and scoring takes place for the rest of the morning. Each of the 96 classes is keenly contested and afternoon visitors will enjoy not only the variety of exhibits, but also the tensions and competitive undercurrents of the event. The Show is open to everyone for the afternoon with teas and a raffle. In recent years a number of the show judges have commented not only on the high standard of the entries, but also on the fact that our type of Show is becoming a precious rarity amongst village communities. Only by you putting in an entry can we keep it going!

Photo competition
Photography show

Programme of events 2024

Sunday 25 February 2024, 11:30 to 1:00 pm,  Open Snowdrops at Hawridge Place

Saturday 7 Septemper – Annual Show and Craft Fair at Hawridge School

Annual show 2024

The full schedule for the 2024 show is available here so you can print your own. If you have queries as to the interpretation of these classes please contact Angie Bettison on 01494 757088.

Class 8 – Five Fuschia Blooms

The five blooms will be staged in boxes provided by the show organisers in a style similar to this photograph.

Your committee

Liz Firth – President
Brian Mills – Chairman
John Allen – Treasurer
Diana Garner – Hon Secretary
Angie Bettison – Show Secretary
Liz Wright – Vice-chair
Charles Firth
Jan Heckscher
David Harmer


Annual membership is only £2 per person. If you wish to join or receive further details please contact Diana Garner – 01494 758347. A membership form may be downloaded from here.

Chairman’s Newsletter

You can read the 2020 Chairman’s Newsletter here.

Eggs and scones


Useful links

Onions on show

Royal Horticultural Society

BBC Gardening

National Gardens Scheme

Sir Harold Hillier Gardens and Arboretum

English Heritage

National Trust