Education Conferences

The South West Education conference for County Gardens Trusts was a regular annual fixture which was hosted and organised by a different county gardens trust every year.

In 2011, Avon Gardens Trust had the pleasure of hosting the event at Tyntesfield.

Our Education Co-ordinator attended the last South West Education Conference which was organised by Wiltshire Gardens Trust and held at Stourhead on the 24 February 2015.

This event is no longer held, but details of previous conferences are shown for you interest.

Previous Conferences

South West Education Conference 2015

This year was the 19th year of this annual meeting was held at Stourhead, Wiltshire, and eight counties from across the south west were represented. Wiltshire Gardens Trust hosted and arranged the day and Cynthia Troup, our Education Co-ordinator, attended. Juliet Wilmot welcomed the visitors and introduced the first speaker who was Martin Clements of the Visitor and Volunteer section at Stourhead. He gave a fascinating talk covering the 300 years of the estate, the…

South West Education Conference 2014

Working in Partnership – Engaging with Schools This well attended meeting was held in February at Bicton EaRTH Centre, East Budleigh, Devon, and the theme ‘working in partnership – engaging with schools’ was chosen to illustrate the collaborative way in which the Devon Gardens Trust is now approaching education. It was opened by Gilly Drummond, Association President, who described how the county garden trusts education committees’ hard work over the last thirty years had now…

South West Education Conference 2013

This was held on a rare sunny spring day in the National Trust owned medieval surroundings of Trerice in Cornwall. Delegates representing six counties across the south west region attended. The keynote speaker was Sarah Chesters, Principal Education Officer at Rosemoor, the RHS garden in Devon. She described a series of activities that were available to her predominantly nursery and primary school visitors to the garden there including pond dipping, tree planting, a hands on…

South West Education Conference 2012

“You will find something far greater in the woods than you will find in books. Stones and trees will teach you that which you will never learn from masters.” St. Bernard of Clairvaux 1091-1153 These words were quoted by Sue Palmer, Head of Farley Nursery in Hampshire, the first speaker at the Conference held on a spring day at Jermyn’s House, Sir Harold Hillier Garden, near Romsey in Hampshire. Fifteen representatives from seven county gardens…

South West Education Conference 2011

Shaun Cheeseman

The Conference, held at The Sawmill, Tyntesfield, on a mild spring day, was attended by 17 delegates from six counties. The first speaker, Shaun Cheeseman, the Healthy Schools Co-ordinator for North Somerset, outlined how the Healthy Schools Programme was a Government funded national initiative that started in 2000. Sadly the funding ceases later this year. The scheme resulted in a range of cross curriculum benefits. In addition, OFSTED were keen to look at the extent…

South West Education Conference 2009

Nick Williams-Ellis

Kingston Maurward College, Dorchester, 2 February The Association of Gardens Trusts’ South-West Education meeting was hosted by Dorset Gardens Trust at Kingston Maurward College, the agricultural and land-based science institution housed in a magnificent eighteenth-century pile on the outskirts of Dorchester. Ten counties are included in the south-west area, but owing to heavy snow, Avon was among only four represented, the others being Wiltshire, Somerset and of course, Dorset. Mary Cruickshank who had recently been…