August 18, 1928


Record Number of Entries

High Standard of Exhibits


Once every year the Memorial Hall at Bovingdon is converted into something resembling a beautiful flower and vegetable garden; in which has been placed the very best horticultural produce and works of handicraft by the villagers and children. They have a habit of doing things very well at Bovingdon, and the annual flower show held on Wednesday proved no exception to this rule. For the first time the show was run this year by the Bovingdon Horticultural Society in conjunction with the Memorial Hall Committee and the result was that a record was achieved in every aspect. The number of entries totalled 450, which was easily a record, and as one would naturally expect from such a go-ahead village as Bovingdon, the produce was of a surprisingly high standard. The judges in the horticultural section, Mr. D. W. Bedford, of The Brae, Berkhamsted, and Mr. T. Avery, of Gaddesden Place, expressed their satisfaction with the produce in general and made a special comment on the not for competition entry of Mr. Martin Hopkinson, of Long Meadow, Bovingdon, whose gardener, Mr. G. Reeves, had staged a really high class exhibit. The judges remarked especially on the fine specimens of Arran Chief potatoes included and the beautiful display of sweet peas. They were also pleased with the splendid roses that were included in the show. The school children of Bovingdon added a great deal to the success of the show and made no less than 120 entries. Mr. Redfern, the judge in the woodwork class commented favourably on the utility and fine finish of the exhibits put in by the boys and made at the school woodwork classes. The test in the painting class was that of an illuminated inscription of “Success to Bovingdon Show”. The judge for this class was Mr. G. Dix, who was so impressed by the high standard attained by the children that he divided the class into two and allotted three prizes for boys and three for girls. Another feature of the show was that of the needlework, cake making, jam making, pickling, etc., and a very novel class was that of “Something New from Something Old”. This, however, did not very severely tax the ingenuity of the mothers of Bovingdon, who converted with much skill and no little camouflage papa’s worn-out suits into Tommy’s best Sunday go-to- meeting trousers. Miss Foclen was the judge of the table decorations, Mrs. Thornton for the cakes, Mrs. Coiling and Mrs. Parry for the needlework, and for the garden and allotments Mr. G. Reeves, Mr. G. Wilimore and Mr. A. Glenister. In the maze of good things that were before them these judges had a task that no one envied but we heard no adverse comments. There are three cups for competition in connection with this show and the villagers vie with one another for the honour of placing them on their mantelpieces for twelve months. The Martin Hopkinson Cup for the best collection of vegetables was won by Mr. E. Haysman, the Copse Hill Cup for the best front flower garden was won by Mrs. Marriott, and the Holland Cup for the best allotment was won by Mr. Merridan. May we congratulate Mr. Haysman, Mr. Merridan and Mr. H. Burgin on the number of prizes they won, and if their horticultural skill is likely to be still further developed our representative will, next year, arm himself with rubber stamps of their name. The Secretary of the show was Mr. Hugh Aronson, who did a lot of work behind the scenes, but was prevented from attending the actual show, the arrangements for the day being very efficiently carried out by Mrs. Goddard, assisted by Mr. A. V. Parker, who was the judges’ secretary.


Although the entries constituted a record, some of the classes in the amateurs’ section were very thin and competition almost non-existent. This is the first time that amateurs have had a section to themselves and it was rumoured that the reason for the small number of entries was that during their country strolls other people’s gardens had been inspected and the amateurs became shy of one another. However, Bovingdon’s way is to make this the best section of all next year. Before the visitors left the Memorial Hall for the gaieties outside they had to visit the tea room, where the very genial Mrs. Glenister and her helpers supplied the most substantial tea one can possibly imagine for is. It included, too, some of Bovingdon’s horticultural produce. Outside there had been arranged a number of interesting side shows, and not the least interesting was that of skittles for a pig, as it was really worth the 6d for three balls to hear the running commentary on people’s efforts and possibilities by that well- known Bovingdon character, Mr. Menheneott; in addition he was assisted zealously by Mr. Goddard and Mr. Bunting. Mr. Brown and Mr. King had charge of an exciting blind-folded wheel barrow race, and Mrs. Vaughan, Mr. Haysman and Mr. Amey did exceedingly good business at the coker-nut shies, whilst Mr. A. Burgin was very anxious that everybody in Bovingdon should endeavour to score 90 on the dart board. Hoop-la, inevitable but always welcome, was in charge of Mrs. Janes and Mrs. Sims. Klondyke was run by Mr. and Mrs. Rowe, and the very busy children’s corner by Mrs. Cowley and Mrs. Aronson. Mr. F. Redding was at the Aunt Sally. In the evening the prizes were presented by Mrs. Tweedie of Chesham-road, Bovingdon,  who is a keen horticulturist. The Berkhamsted Excelsior Bank, under the conductorship of Mr. J. Hager, played for dancing in the evening, and also selections during the afternoon. The dance stewards were Mr. Reeves and Mr. Sear. it was a great day for Bovingdon, and Bovingdon showed that it could do great things.

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