This page contains latest, and some archive, news relating specifically to the Berks Bucks and Oxon Area of NAFAS. Note that due to the ever changing content of this website, some links for old news may not work. Most archive news kept for historical purposes can be accessed via Archive News.
News from the 63rd BB&O AGM – 20th October 2023
The Area AGM this year was held in October before the clocks changed to allow members to safely travel home in daylight. This seemed to work well so is likely to continue in the future. The meeting was efficiently run by Area President Alison Mount. On behalf of all area members Alison expressed gratitude to outgoing Area Chairman Jane Haas who, despite her husband’s illness and the fact they now live in Devon. had stayed in post for a fourth year following Maureen Preston’s illness. So Alison was pleased to award the Penelope Everett Member of the Year Trophy to Jane. Other area trophies were awarded as follows:
- The HEATHER BARBER ROSE BOWL for the club which donated the most money to charity was awarded to Aylesbury for raising £1661.14. The award was collected by Val Truby who does so much to raise money for charities in Aylesbury.
- The FLOWER ARRANGER PLATTER for the Club Flower Arranger Rep who has been most successful in increasing the number of orders in 2023 was awarded to Bladon and Woodstock.
- The DIANE GILL GLASS PLATE for the most innovative design was awarded to two designs: ‘On the Shoulders of Giants’ area design at the national show in Gloucester by Sandie Draper, Fiona Blacklock and Kim Wright; and ‘Pampas Party’ at the Royal Windsor Rose Show by Angela Edmonds.
- The CHAIRMAN’S CHOICE award went to Caroline Golding in recognition of the talents she has contributed to the area.
Area reports had been sent out in advance and the online voting form had been completed by 29 (out of a possible 36) clubs. Short updates to the reports were given.
Jackie Page was appointed Area Chairman, but there had been no nominations for the post of Area Vice-Chairman. There had also been no nominations for Area Treasurer and Area Media Officer, but Alison Vacher and Shirley Sexton have agreed to stay in post for the time being, but everyone was warned that unless these posts are filled soon then the area is in severe danger of closing. Brenda Milton, Sheila Williams and Irene Richards have stayed in post as area secretary, area JDSE Officer and Area Trading Officer respectively.
After the meetings many people enjoyed a tasty two course lunch, which was then followed by an entertaining demonstration and presentation entitled ‘Flowers in a Vase’ by Jane Haas and Irene Manson.
Bookings may now be made for the following area workshops:
- Many people were disappointed that they could not make last year’s Holly Berry workshop so the JDSE committee have arranged a similar workshop – but this time to create Halloween Spell Berry. The workshop will be led by Area Teacher CAROLINE GOLDING at St John’s Church Cottage, Church Road, Woodley RG5 4QN on Monday 30th October, 11am to 4pm. Cost of the workshop, including some of the materials, is £25. Tea/coffee will be provided but please bring your own lunch. To book click on 2023 Spell Berry Workshop Booking Form
- Christmas wreath workshop – 7.30-9.30pm Wed 29th November at Amersham & Chiltern Rugby Club, Ash Grove, Weldon Lane, Amersham HP6 5QU. The workshop will be led by National Teacher JACKIE PAGE. Cost of the workshop, including all materials plus a glass of mulled wine and mince pies, is £35. To book click on 2023 Christmas Wreath Workshop Booking Form
Click on Gardens Tour Report for feedback on ‘Delights of Derbyshire‘ area trip 18-21 May 2023.
News from the 62nd BB&O AGM – 11th November 2022
After 2 years of meeting via Zoom it was good to be back in Benson for a real AGM. Reports were sent out in advance. The online voting form was completed by 26 clubs., with several clubs voting at the meeting. Short updates to the reports were given. At the short council meeting the area chairman gave a brief description of the 2023 Area Day on 28th April, which will be entitled ‘A Day at the Races’. Shirley Sexton also described the work that had been done, and work that still needs to be done to make the flower festival a success.
The following area trophies were awarded.
There had been only 2 nominations for the PENELOPE EVERETT MEMBER OF THE YEAR TROPHY for the member who has ‘gone above and beyond’ to support their club and/or area. After due consideration by our Area President and Area Vice President the trophy was awarded to the whole of the F&GP team for all the work they had done to support clubs and the area during the last few difficult years.
The HEATHER BARBER ROSE BOWL for the club which donated the most money to charity was awarded to GERRARDS CROSS. They raised £1790 which was shared between several charities. The Area Treasurer pointed out that any money clubs raise towards the forthcoming flower festival should be included in next year’s figures.
The FLOWER ARRANGER PLATTER for the Club Flower Arranger Rep who has been most successful in increasing the number of orders in 2022 was awarded to LORRAINE CHAPMAN from Gerrards Cross Flower Club.
The DIANE GILL glass plate for the most innovative design was awarded to Jane Belcher for her outstanding design at Chelsea Flower Show. Entitled ‘Pollination’ her design achieved gold and Best Floral Window.
The new CHAIRMAN’S CHOICE award went to Maggie Stiles and Jane Murphy who had only taken up flower arranging after they were inspired by the 2016 Blenheim Palace Flower Show. They joined Abingdon Flower Club and went to beginner classes run by Chris Pearce. They had improved so much that they won first prize in the 2022 club class at Blenheim.
Three members of F&GP who had come to the end of their term of office have all agreed to stay on for one more year: Jane Haas as Area Chairman, Alison Vacher as Area Treasurer and Shirley Sexton as Area Media Officer. Jackie Page was appointed Area VIce-Chairman, and Sheila Williams was appointed JDSE Officer, as well as continuing her role as Flower Arranger Rep.
Rosemary McGowan stepped down as Area President. This position is now held by Alison Mount. It was agreed the post of Area Vice-President would not be filled this year. Jane Haas gave heartfelt thanks to Rosemary for all the support she has given to the F&GP committee during her three years as Area President.
Rosemary has now stepped in as Oxon Rep, with Pat Dibben and Sally Hardy continuing in their roles as Bucks and Berks reps respectively
Following the officer appointments Jane warned members that if new area officers could not be found in the next year then there is a serious possibility that the area will have to fold.
After the meetings many people enjoyed a tasty two course lunch, which was then followed by a delightful demonstration from Area Demonstrator Lorraine Saunders.
The 2023 AGM will take place on Friday 20th October. This will make travel much easier since it will be before clocks change.
Results from Area Show at Blenheim Palace
Despite the wind playing havoc with some designs the Area staged an excellent show ‘Jewels in the Crown’ 24-26 June at the Blenheim Palace Flower Show. All photos will shortly be available in the BB&O Flowers Photo albums. For the full set of results see 2022 Blenheim Palace Show Results
Achievements at national level
Irene Manson was awarded first in class ‘Written in the Stars‘ at the NAFAS 2022 Virtual Show ‘Chasing Rainbows’. The class specification was a collage exhibit depicting one of the signs of the zodiac.
News from the 61st BB&O AGM – 12th November 2021
The ongoing COVID pandemic, coupled with major building work at Benson Parish Hall, meant the 61st Area AGM was once again held via Zoom. Reports were sent out in advance. and the online voting form was completed by 30 clubs. 50 members attended the Zoom meeting, including representatives from 30 clubs, and most area officers and reps. The following area trophies were awarded. The trophies were shown on Zoom and will be awarded personally the next time there is a practical council meeting.
There had been 6 worthy nominations for the Penelope Everett Member of the Year Trophy for the member who has ‘gone above and beyond’ to support their club and/or area. After due consideration by our Area President and Area Vice Chairman the trophy was awarded to Ann Dawson for her outstanding work for Bladon and Woodstock Flower Club. She took over as chairman just as COVID hit and she has worked hard to ensure the club, not just kept going, but thrived in these very difficult circumstances. Unfortunately neither Ann, nor any other representative from Bladon and Woodstock attended the Zoom AGM but the trophy will be presented at the next area council meeting.
The Heather Barber Rose Bowl for the club which donated the most money to charity was awarded to Phoenix Design. They raised £100 for the Thames Valley Air Ambulance and £100 for the Thames Valley Hospice.
The Flower Arranger Platter for the Club Flower Arranger Rep who has been most successful in increasing the number of orders in 2021 was awarded to Hilary Arafeh from Holyport Flower Club.
Jane Haas announced that the Diane Gill award would not be awarded this year as there have been so few opportunities to showcase our work. Also the criteria for this award will be changed slightly for next year to make it more open to all designers. For 2022 there would be a new award called The Chairman’s Choice. The trophy for this award has come from Maidenhead Flower Club. It will be awarded to anyone who has come to the attention of the area chairman for work for their club, area or nationally.
As Chris Pearce is now chairman of Abingdon Flower Club she has relinquished her role as Oxon Rep so this role is now vacant. All other area officers and repre
Jane announced that at the 2022 AGM some new area officers would be required. The aim is to ask clubs and members for nominations for these posts very soon so that individuals have the opportunity to shadow the existing officers.
- Jane Haas comes to the end of her term of office as area chairman in 2022. Maureen Preston will then become chairman so a new vice-chairman will be needed.
- Alison Vacher comes to the end of her term of office as area treasurer in 2022 so a replacement will be needed
- Shirley Sexton will be stepping down as Media Officer so a replacement is needed. Shirley has served as Media Officer since the role was officially designated in 2013, having actually been responsible for the area website since 2007.
Oct 2021 – New Area Bank Details
The area now has transferred its bank account from HSBC to NAT WEST. Recently made payments will be transferred to the new account, but if you have any queries please email email@example.com
Account Name: BB&O Area of NAFAS
Account Number: 10281169
Sort code: 60-24-21
This is particularly relevant to:
- Club treasurers when paying affiliation fees
- Club Flower Arranger reps when ordering bulk copies of the magazine for their clubs
- Club Publications Officers when ordering NAFAS products via the Area Publications Officer
- Any individual booking a place on any area event such as area workshops, area events etc
‘Run a Successful Club’ Workshops
A series of FREE Zoom workshops have been planned to help club officers or management teams run a successful club. See Run a Successful Club Workshops. Anyone can attend, and clubs are encouraged to send at least one participant to each Zoom workshop.