Allotment Associations & Horticultural Groups in Harrow, Middlesex
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Belmont Horticultural Society founded in 1941
The society was formed during the early days of World War II in response to the ‘Dig for Victory’ campaign, when the ground, used for leisure activities by the occupants of the houses bordered by Bellamy Drive and Weston Drive became available for Allotments. So it was that on the 6th April 1941 the Belmont district Allotment and Horticultural Association was formed.
In the early days there were two trading huts, one at Brazier’s farm and the other on the Vernon Drive Allotment site and for the next twenty years or so the trading activity was conducted from these two centres.
Change was inevitable, and in 1962 when Mr. Brazier found that he needed the use of the shed he had loaned us on his farm, it was necessary to have a new trading venue. The Committee erected a trading Hut on the Weston Drive site and the Council offered to meet half the cost towards a new driveway, if the Society would pay the balance. A raffle was organised to raise the money needed. Enthusiastic volunteers built the hut which today serves as the society’s only trading venue.
The association’s first flower and vegetable show was held in the autumn of 1949 and was a great success with a total of 289 entries. The prizes were donated to the association and this continued until 1968 it was decided that the cash prizes would be awarded and that they would be presented at the Annual General Meeting.
In 1967 the Association found that its membership was now extending to include gardeners who did not, in fact, have allotments and so a change of name was felt necessary. The name chosen was that which we will still have ‘Belmont Garden and Allotment Society’. Two additional innovations were introduced, a summer show and social functions such as visits to gardens of interest or a costal resort and an annual dinner and dance.
Mrs. Osborne started a Floral Art group in 1971 where some 20 or 30 ladies enjoyed a fortnightly evening learning the art and skill of flower arranging. This activity proved most successful and became an important feature of both the summer and autumn shows.
The pace of change in the last decade has made the continuation of many the events associated with this society almost impossible to maintain, yet we managed to preserve much of that which has made Belmont G & A’s Society with 550 members and a trading hut still offering friendly service.
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