January 23, 2018


Garden centres scoop top awards at GCA conference -

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Smart Garden Products is bringing the Three Kings brand to Spring Fair -

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Wildlife World returns to Spring Fair in February 2018 -

Monday, January 22, 2018

Wyevale Nurseries landscape & amenity sales up by 20% -

Monday, January 22, 2018

Squire’s customers raise over £21,300 for local charities -

Monday, January 22, 2018

Garden centre in Devon wows customers with new cafe offering including ‘free from’ treats -

Friday, January 19, 2018

Catshill garden centre donates trees to Dudley Zoo -

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Shoulder To Soldier makes plans at the Bents community allotment -

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Perrywood presents cheques totalling over £14,000 to chosen charities -

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

BBC comedian to compere GCA awards dinner -

Monday, January 15, 2018

Paradise Park Garden Centre supports town academy -

Thursday, January 11, 2018

New roads mean workers facing job losses at Willesborough Wyevale garden centre -

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Bonningtons Announces New Website Launch -

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Squire’s in Long Ditton is Garden Centre of the Year -

Monday, January 8, 2018

Donkey Sanctuary thanks Dunbar Garden Centre visitors for their festive support -

Monday, January 8, 2018

Record breaking growth for Farplants’ Christmas offering -

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Notcutts celebrates successful 120th year -

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Tong Garden Centre launches staff reward and recognition scheme -

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Dogs met Santa at Squire’s -

Monday, December 18, 2017

Bunnings Warehouse opens its first store in South Yorkshire -

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Bonjour Smart Solar

Smart Solar

Smart Solar has announced the appointment of Xavier Faure as European Sales Manager to support its ambitious strategic strategy for growth across continental Europe. Xavier has been in the garden product business for over 15 years, most recently representing a number of suppliers in the garden centre market in France and Germany.  He will be focussing on key accounts, bringing a wealth of experience and knowledge to the role, including the ability to speak fluent English and German in addition to his native French. Smart Solar experienced 50% growth in European sales in 2012, which it is on target to…

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James Barnes and Sharon Brown leave Dobbies


Dobbies have confirmed that CEO James Barnes and Finance Director Sharon Brown left the garden centre business yesterday. Parent company Tesco, who gained full control of Dobbies five years ago, remains committed to the garden centre brand, added the spokesperson. There will be no change in strategy, but they will be looking at ways to unlock the potential of the business through all channels. “The company is grateful of the contribution made by both James and Sharon.” James Barnes’ family founded the Dobbies business and were shareholders until the sale to Tesco in 2007. The spokesperson said Dobbies will be…

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Mr Fothergill’s appoints Paul Pates as head of direct marketing

Mr Fothergill's

Mr Fothergill’s has appointed Paul Pates as head of direct marketing, with responsibility for the Mr Fothergill’s, D. T. Brown and Woolmans brands. He joins the Suffolk-based company from S E Marshall and Co, where he was head of marketing.  Prior to this Paul was head of marketing (garden division) at Flying Brands. Previously he established and ran his own business and separately was seconded by Seton UK Ltd, a business-to-business direct marketer of industrial safety products, to establish an operation in Australia. Announcing the appointment, joint managing director John Fothergill said, “Paul is a trained direct marketer with strong…

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The Frosts Garden Centre Group has just signed an exclusive deal with TV personality and award-winning celebrity gardener Diarmuid Gavin to provide a bespoke garden design service called Inspired Gardens. Aimed at the discerning customer looking to achieve the most inspirational and imaginative of all gardens, the well-known presenter, author and award winner for designs at the Chelsea Flower Show, will use his expertise and imagination to create bespoke gardens through the Frosts Garden Design Team. “This is the first of its kind of partnership across the Garden Centre Industry and a huge coup for Frosts”, says James Frost, Managing…

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Smart Solar appoint Fleur Hayter-Jose

Smart Solar

Smart Solar has appointed Fleur Hayter-Jose as Product Development Manager. Fleur is an additional member of the NPD team with specific responsibility for the development of new product lines for 2014. Fleur, who previously held the position of Product Manager with Gardman, brings a wealth of product sourcing and marketing experience across a wide range of garden products. She is initially working on products to be launched at Glee in September. Jonathan Stobart, MD, commented, “We are delighted that Fleur has joined our growing team, adding relevant skills and experience that we need to achieve our ambitious expansion plans.”

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HTA announce new Head of Horticulture


The Horticultural Trades Association is delighted to announce that Raoul Curtis-Machin has agreed to join the HTA as its new Head of Horticulture. His appointment comes following the departure of Tim Briercliffe who has left the HTA to become Secretary General of the International Association of Horticultural Producers (AIPH). Raoul has been selected for the role from a very strong shortlist.  Raoul has most recently worked for the National Trust as a Garden and Parks Adviser, advising on strategic garden development re-designing the training programmes for the 400+ gardeners. Most recently Raoul became a Commercial Development Consultant with the National…

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Smart Solar appoint two new members to it’s head office staff

Smart Solar

Smart Solar has welcomed two new members to its head office sales and administration team to support its planned growth in 2013. Adam Stredwick has joined the product design and development department as assistant graphic designer. Adam has a degree in Graphic Design from Swansea Metropolitan University and is on a graduate trainee scheme. With Smart Solar’s sustained growth in European sales, Oceane Balan has been appointed to support the French garden centre market and provide additional sales administration for Smart Solar’s European business. Oceane is French but speaks fluent English and German, which will help Smart Solar to provide…

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The Garden Centre Group appoints Sarah Fuller as marketing director

Garden Centre

The Garden Centre Group has appointed Sarah Fuller, who previously worked on the three-year Delia Smith and Heston Blumenthal campaign for Waitrose, as its new marketing director. Fuller has previously held roles as marketing communications head at Waitrose and director of marketing and insight at British Airways Group. Kevin Bradshaw, chief executive at the Garden centre Group, said: “In the twelve months since The Garden Centre Group was acquired by Terra Firma we have been able to attract strong talent into all areas of the business which, combined with a range of operational improvements, have made us stronger and more…

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Smart move for Paris Natar

Paris Natar

Paris Natar has acquired a majority stake in Smart Solar Ltd for an undisclosed sum. Natar has been managing his own garden products businesses since 1982. He exited his most recent, Gardman, five years ago when he sold it to Barclays Private Equity in a deal worth £85m. He commented: “Smart Solar is a great company. It has a strong and very committed management team that has navigated this long recession effectively and profitably. Having concluded that early retirement was not my cup of tea, I made an approach to see if Smart Solar might be interested in working with…

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Green-fingered Maurice has come full circle at Frosts Garden Centre


Even after 50 years, Maurice Rust still gets the same thrill out of passing on his vast gardening knowledge. Maurice has been working for Frosts Garden Centre in Woburn Sands for half a century, and has come full circle. From fuelling the boilers to plants manager to offering customers advice on their gardens, he has done it all. Maurice said:“I’ve seen the business grow, the landscape has changed beyond recognition, the whole place has changed. I started when I was 16. I’ve built up a vast knowledge of the industry in that time. I’ve transgressed from the glass houses, I…

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