This year the HTA has awarded The Pearson Memorial Medal to Baroness Fookes, the co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Gardening and Horticulture Group (APPGHG) recognising her outstanding services to horticulture.
HTA President Adam Taylor made the award at the annual APPGHG reception event held at the Palace of Westminster on 29 October 2018.
Commenting on the award Adam Taylor said, “It gives me great pleasure to award Baroness Fookes with the Pearson Memorial Medal for her outstanding contribution to horticulture. Through her commitment to the APPGHG Baroness Fookes has tirelessly worked on behalf of the sector to help raise its profile and promote its cause in Parliament for which her efforts should be applauded.”
Baroness Fookes has contributed to a multitude of organisations, being involved with at least 16 or so organisations currently at a national and local level. For example, she is the the vice-president nationally of the RSPCA and SSAFA Forces Help but also President of her local branch for both organisations.
Having started her illustrious career as a teacher Baroness Fookes continues to hold an interest in education. Indeed, one her most recent written questions to the House of Lords were around the focus on, or lack of, horticulture as a viable career and the quality of horticulturally related content in the National Curriculum.
A keen gardener Baroness Fookes was raised to the peerage in 1997 and has been Deputy Speaker to the House of Lords since 2010, holding several positions on various committees and groups politically, not least of which is the Joint Chair of the APPGHG, a position she has held since 2010.
Every year the HTA sees fit to honour individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to horticulture. The Pearson Memorial Medal was instigated in 1930 in memory of the HTA’s first General Secretary, Charles Pearson.