Published on 14 - June - 2012
New chair for GreenfingersThe charity has appointed horticultural expert, garden designer, TV presenter ad radio panelist Matthew Wilson as its new chairman.
Retiring chairman Richard Jackson with new Greenfingers boss Matthew Wilson
He replaces Richard Jackson, who has held the role for the past 14 years. Mr Jackson said: "I am thrilled to announce Matthew as my replacement. His expertise in horticulture and passion for creating gardens makes him the ideal person for the job.
"This is a very exciting time for Greenfingers. In recent years we have seen a significant increase in profile, in funds raised and in charitable activity, and we are now entering a period of further growth and consolidation.
"I'm sure that Matthew will drive Greenfingers even further forward, ensuring the continued success of the charity. I wish him the best of luck in the role and hope he enjoys the challenge as much as I have."
The announcement about Mr Wilson's new appointment was made in the Honda (UK) Childhood Memories garden at BBC Gardeners' World Live, which won Best Show Garden 2012.
Having grown up on a cut flower nursery in Kent, Mr Wilson's interest in horticulture began at an early age. By 25 he was studying horticulture at Hadlow College and now the managing director at Clifton Nurseries in London.
He said: "I am absolutely thrilled with my appointment as Chair of Greenfingers. I've grown up in horticulture and have been working in the industry for more than 20 years. With this background and my previous experience of the horticultural charity sector, when I worked for the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS), I believe I will be able to lead the charity forward.
"During my time at the RHS, where I was curator of Hyde Hall garden in Essex and then at Harlow Carr in North Yorkshire, I made it my mission not just to improve the horticulture, but also to make the connection between children and gardens as exciting, fun and inspirational as possible.
"I have been involved in setting up learning centres and designing teaching gardens, and creating sunflower mazes and wild woods, always bearing in mind the capacity for children to learn and enjoy the outdoors. I believe this experience will be invaluable in my new role with Greenfingers."
Mr Wilson, who lives in Gipsy Hill in London, has volunteered and helped design a number of gardens for schools and institutions, including the new oncology wing of St James' Hospital in Leeds.
He is also a panellist on BBC4's Gardeners Question Time, has presented the award-winning Channel 4 TV series, The Landscape Man, and has authored three gardening books, including RHS New Gardening: How to Garden in a Changing Climate, which won the Garden Media Guild Practical Book of the Year award in 2007.
He continued: "I truly admire the work of Greenfingers and I am so grateful to have been given the opportunity to be involved. I believe I will be able to make a significant contribution to its work."
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