Our overall show winners Scott & Erica Bailey were presented with their prize cup at Ayletts Nurseries this week by Adam Wrigglesworth (Director of the family garden centre). Congratulations go to the pair whose produce really was quite amazing. Scott however, joked that they were merely borrowing it from Keith (last year's winner and our chairman)
The silver cup has quite an interesting history in fact - it is inscribed as the St Albans Horticultural Society cup, and was presented in 1931 by Leonard Ryder, brother to Samuel (who gives his name to an equally prestigious golf cup apparently). The brothers ran a seed company from St Albans, and were the first people to offer affordable seeds for leisure gardening to the masses in the 1890s. You may well have eaten in their old seed packing warehouse as it is now Cafe Rouge on Holywell hill.
Sorry, I digress, back to the cup. Well, the St Albans Horticultural Society is sadly no more, and when they folded, the cup was given to Ayletts for safe-keeping. It was stuffed in a loft and forgotten about until the CNAA was formed, and the chairman was looking for something to award it's summer show winners. Ayletts kindly dug out the cup, polished it up and added a wooden base for inscription of the winners name. Our thanks go to Ayletts for hosting our presentation and their continued support.
So, it has seen a few gardeners in it's time, and whether it resides with Scott and Erica for a year or for many, it will definitely see a few more!