HISTORY OF THE ELM PARK HORTICULTURAL GUILD.
To encourage potential buyers and make the new Elm Park estate
look attractive, the developers and builders sponsored a “Best
Front Gardens Competition”. A Committee was formed of local
residents to administer and judge the event, and out of this “The
Elm Park Gardens Guild” was created.
In an effort to support a communal spirit, Flower Shows were
organized and trophies donated by, amongst others, The Halifax
Building Society, Messrs.Taylor Walker, and The Elm Park
Our first Show took place on 24th April 1937. There were 15
classes in which members staged 47 exhibits. Summer and Autumn
Shows followed, held in school halls, (Benhurst and Ayloff), and
so began the Guilds history.
The following year, Shows increased to 4, each growing in Classes
and entries as new residents joined the Guild from the expanding
4 Shows were planned for 1939, only 3 took place. The Autumn
Show was held on 2nd September, and the next day 3rd September,
the Second World War was declared. Although a token show was
held on 6th July 1940, the Guild went into retirement for the rest of
It was reformed and renamed “The Elm Park Horticultural Guild”
in 1948, holding its Summer Show in Benhurst school on 24th July.
During the 1950’s all our Shows were held in the Elm Park
Constitutional Hall. Since 1961 all our Shows have taken place in
the Elm Park Assembly Hall.
Between 1961 and 1976 the Guild held 8 Flower Shows a year, but
this has decreased to 4 due to the lack of many specialist growers
The E.P.H.G. also offers other events for its members and has a
busy social diary. It organizes coach outings to various famous
gardens and places of interest, as well as trips to theatres and other
places. The Guild also holds floral art demonstrations and other
It has very well stocked Trading Huts which are open every
Sunday morning from which composts, fertilizers, canes, trays,
etc are sold to Guild members. The Huts are situated by the side of
Elm Park library in St.Nicholas Avenue, Elm Park, RM12 4PT.
The Elm Park Horticultural Guild is still one of the largest
gardening club or society in the country with 1400 household as
paid up members, (2011).
We like to think we are more than just a
horticultural guild. We have been an integral
part of the local community for 75 years.
New members are always welcomed and if you would like to join
the E.P.H.G., visit us at the Trading Huts any Sunday morning, or
contact our Membership Secretary . The yearly subscription is just
£2.00 per household or £1.50 if you are retired.
Jeremy Wilkes. General and Trading Secretary EPHG.