by Richard Ward
The Annual Kew Guild Dinner was held on Thursday 25th May in Cambridge Cottage, Kew Green.
On one of the hottest days of the year nearly 60 Guild members and guests enjoyed free access to the Gardens during the day and at 18.50 precisely were summoned to the dining room by MC Richard Ward. Members and guests clapped President Allan Stuttard and his wife into the room and Rev. Hugh Flower said Grace. After the meal Stewart Henchie, ebullient as ever, proposed the toast to ‘The President’, to which Allan responded, reminisced, entertained us all, and gave a toast to ‘The Kew Guild’ and ‘Our guests.’ Kew’s Director of Horticulture Richard Barley responded on behalf of the guests. Diploma student Kathryn Bray gave the toast ‘To Absent Friends.’
President Allan presented the Kew Guild medal to Landscape Designer Chris Beardshaw who voiced his appreciation. The George Brown scroll ‘For furthering diplomacy in the true spirit of the Kew Guild’ was presented to Nicholas Boyes who was equally grateful.
Past Presidents of the Guild were stood and were recognised. Similarly Overseas visitors – being Val and Jim Mitchell from Australia, Pamela and Brian Dodds and Ian Lamont Smith from Canada.
5 Diploma students attended the Dinner. Di Stuttard kindly drew the raffle tickets and their raffle raised £280 for student funds.
Allan thanked outgoing Dinner organiser Jennifer Alsop, MC Richard Ward, and Editor Sparkle Ward for their input to the evening; and presented gifts of wine and flowers in appreciation.
Further details of the evening will be published in the Events of 2017 Journal, together with selected photos.