The Alpine Garden Society saw the light of day in December 1929. The main purpose of the Society was, and still is to educate its members and the general public in all matters relating to alpine plants. Over the years this has been achieved by staging National Shows, publishing a quarterly Journal and books on alpines and by organising Talks and Conferences. Ever since its inception the Society has also built displays incorporating alpine plants at various Flower Shows.
We are also passionate about the conservation of alpine plants and as a registered charity, we fund cultivation and conservation projects across the UK and abroad. We also support the development of knowledge and skills in the alpine field through our AGS Trainee Scheme.
Alpine Garden Society members enjoy exclusive benefits such as expert-led tours all over the world and access to one of the biggest seed exchanges in the world.
The Alpine Garden Society is governed by a Board of Trustees, and run by a Director and other paid staff and a team of volunteers.
The AGS Board of Trustees is the Society’s governing body. The Board consists of the President, Director, Treasurer, up to four other officers and eight individual members. The role of the board is:
T BRYAN – Tony has 30 years of experience in retail horticulture. Before joining the AGS in 2020, he was General Manager of Dobbies Garden Centre in Cirencester. He’s worked for Blooms of Bressingham, Country Gardens, Blue Diamond and as a Regional Manager for Wyevale Garden Centres.
President: D MORRIS – David is area operations manager for the RSPB and has nearly 20 years of experience in working in the environmental charity sector. As a professional ecologist and botanist, David has a strong interest in alpines both in the wild and cultivation. David founded our society’s Mardale conservation project and plays an active role in local group activities and exhibiting plants at our shows. He’s a keen gardener and leads botanical tours to the mountains across the globe.
Treasurer: PROF J GALLOWAY BSc, PhD, MA, LLM – Life-time career in scientific, medical, dental and health care research in several capacities; worked in several universities, Sheffield, Oxford, Manchester and London and for the Medical Research Council and major charities, Foundations and Trusts; Cancer Research Campaign, Wellcome and Progress Education Trusts, Nuffield Foundation.
Director of Shows: M ROGERSON – Martin is a retired Chartered Aeronautical Engineer who worked in aircraft propulsion R&D for 36 years. A keen amateur gardener and member of the AGS since 1996. An active member, and one time chairman, of the Derby Group and an exhibitor and judge at National Shows.
Director of Seed Exchange: Vacant
T FREETH – Thomas is a professional horticulturist with a background in landscape design and construction, sports turf and botany. For several years he managed the Alpine and Rock Garden Living Collections, landscapes and Glasshouses at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. He still works there in the curatorial team for both Kew and Wakehurst Place sites. He has extensive show garden build experience, travels widely, leads tours and speaks to groups and conferences.
C SAWYER – Celia’s love of alpines began when she worked at the Oxford Botanic Garden, quickly joining the AGS and the thriving local Group. She spent 30 years at the Botanic Garden, part of that time looking after the rock garden and alpine house and also dealing with plant records, labelling, seed list, etc. Hobbies are gardening and photography. She has travelled to various European mountain sites to see alpines growing in the wild and to photograph them.
D HASELGROVE – David, a solicitor by profession, has always had a real passion for alpines. He has been on the Trustee Board for most of the last 40 years, has been the Director for AGS Publications for 25 years and has served as President of the AGS for one term.
G DEVRIES – Gail began her career in social housing in London and the South East before moving to be the CEO for various social support charities in Kent and Sussex. She was a Director and Chair of ‘Kent Savers’ start up credit union for 6 years, and is currently the Vice Chair of Relate Worcestershire. She learned gardening skills from her parents and has been an AGS member since 1989. She has general plant interests and especially enjoys propagating plants.
D CLEMENT – Diane is a retired teacher who specialised in IT software and hardware accessibility for children with visual disabilities and other complex needs. She has been an active member of the AGS for over 25 years and has been involved with the Seed Exchange for the last 20 years, initially as Seed Reception Manager, and for the last 12 years as Seed Director. She enjoys travelling to see plants in the wild and enjoys lecturing to AGS and other gardening groups. She is a keen exhibitor and judge at National Shows.
P COOK – Paul is Curator at the RHS Garden Harlow Carr, in Yorkshire. He trained at the RBG Kew and during this time was awarded travel scholarships to work at the RBG Edinburgh and in 1987 to spend four weeks exploring the Dolomites tracking the travels made by Reginald Farrer. After Kew Paul worked as Head Gardener at Arley Hall Gardens in Cheshire before taking over as Curator at Ness Botanic Gardens from Peter Cunnington.
P LIVERMAN – Peter is a retired commercial grower of year round chrysanthemums after training at Hadlow College, Kent, ending up with an OND. After the collapse of the chrysanthemum industry in this country he became a self-employed maintenance gardener until retirement. He has been an AGS member since about 1978 and was chairman of the West Sussex AGS Group until its winding up in 2020.
R AMOS – Dr Rob Amos joined the Society when he was 12. As well as being a keen exhibitor (his favourite genus is Narcissus), he is also active in the local AGS Bedfordshire Group. Rob is an expert in international conservation law, particularly as it relates to plants, and he has a leading role in developing the Society’s conservation work.
The AGS employs a core team of staff and relies on the help of volunteers. The day-to-day running of the Society is managed by the Society Director and staff.
Deborah’s first involvement in the world of gardening was school holidays spent working in tulip fields and the retail plant industry. After commissioning and editing travel guides for some years, she did several stints as Deputy Editor on RHS The Garden. She has worked as a freelance editor and sub-editor on horticultural magazines for nearly 20 years, from The Orchid Review and The Garden to Garden News, and has written for gardening websites and other publications.
Razvan has a background in amenity horticulture and has been a member of the AGS since age 14. He has helped stage and design AGS exhibits at RHS Flower Shows (Chelsea and Tatton), is a Speaker Secretary for the East Cheshire AGS Group, gives talks and leads botanical tours in the UK and abroad. Razvan manages the AGS website, Social Media platforms (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest), is in charge of organising Zoom lectures and other AGS events and flower shows. He is also leading tours for the AGS and occasionally helps in the AGS garden at Pershore.
Whether you are new to gardening or an experienced grower of alpines we have something for you. Find out more about becoming a member here.