I note from last year's journal that I predicted a wave of progress for the Society in the year 2000. Autumn is a good time for reflection analysis and planning, so how have we performed?

The first change was in the timing and format of the A.G.M. In terms of attendance a total disaster; and yet from that meeting came the formation of a committee, reliable and hardworking enthusiasts who have given a good deal to the running of the Society.

The move to shorter newsletters and a more substantial journal appears in have been well received, and as you will see we have managed to move to colour! However, there is still a need for the views, ideas and comments of a greater proportion of the membership. This edition has contributions from three members, a very small percent age of the total. I will continue to urge members to write for the Society, nothing is too trivial.

As you will read in the report the annual show had an increase in exhibitors and visitors, and hopefully this will continue in years to come.

You will also see that we have extended out into links with other societies, to the benefit of all I believe. Thus, I reflect that this has been a year of positive growth and progress, a steady momentum that has continued to build for a secure future. To that end we hope to mount a Society display at the Malvern Spring Show in 2001, our first venture into the larger arena of publicity. If this proves successful it will hopefully become a major event in the Society's calendar

I hope that there is something of interest to all members. I have received a number of queries throughout the year on stem and root rot. Thus I have reproduced a Scientific article from the 1930's. It gives food for thought rather than direct answers.

The breeding of new varieties, both for garden and exhibition should have an important role within the Society. Thus I hope my short report on the work of Ian Pickup and myself, might encourage few more to take up the pollen brush. Ian has also written of his experiences at local shows. Colin Andrews (the raiser of that very good viola "Jennifer Andrews") has contributed a thought-provoking article which I hope will produce some positive results.

It is with sadness that I have to end this piece by reporting the passing of three gentlemen who exerted great influence in the viola and pansy world

Joseph Jackson, John Johnston and Ray Frost

Each made some contribution towards ensuring the maintenance, improvement and preservation of the flowering plants to which our Society is dedicated.

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