Mid Southern Group

Daffodil enthusiasts felt that there was need of a group in the central southern area of England and so The Mid Southern Daffodil Group was formed in 1989 with the intention of covering Berks, Surrey, West Sussex, Bucks, Oxon and S.E. Hants areas.

It has been successful in this quest and has an enthusiastic, non fee paying membership, currently around 60 members.

The group usually holds a daffodil show at its Chobham venue, the date of which is the last Sunday in March (this date can unfortunately clash with changing to BST resulting in “jet lagged” bleary eyed competitors!). Each October the group holds a bulb sale and general meeting at Virginia Water, a last chance to meet up before the winter months close in.

The present committee ably led by Stafford Salt, secretary Alex Burke, George and Mrs Margaret Oakley, Malcolm Hill, Mrs Garry Aston-Coe Mrs Tammy Smithers, Graham Thirkettle and Den Hawkins offers a warm welcome to old and prospective members interested in our hobby.

The Late Vic Coe
It is with great sadness that we report the passing of Vic Coe, a Vice President of The Daffodil Society.
Vic has, until relatively recently, been the Chairman of the DS Mid-Southern group, he is an experienced and long standing Society judge and for many years was a welcoming and helpful steward at the RHS daffodil shows.
Vic attended the Society’s first Presentation evening just over a fortnight ago and was in good health and good spirits which makes his sudden death such a shock. We send our sincere condolences to his family.

Victor William Coe  –   05.06.1931 – 20.11.2018      Obituary
He spent his childhood in the Suffolk countryside growing up against the backdrop of WW2, with his sister Hilda and brothers Jim and George. National Service saw him move to the city as an RAF Policeman at Uxbridge where he met his first wife, Helen. He carried on to have a successful career in the Metropolitan Police, where he was promoted to the rank of Sergeant.
He had two children with Helen, Brian and Diane.  In later life, after losing Helen, he met Garry and they married. This allowed him to fill his twilight years with a great deal more love, of which he had so much to give.
He achieved so much in his life. He was a Royal Horticultural Society committee member & show steward, a National Vegetable Society judge, a Daffodil Society judge, Mid-Southern Daffodil Society Chairman & Show Secretary, a Middlesex Guild judge, Chair of Perivale Community Association, Horsenden Allotments and Gardens Association President, and organiser & member of Perivale Bowls Group.
On top of this, he was an active grower and shower of everything horticultural, winning countless prizes along the way, and in 2016 was awarded a Vice Presidency of the National Daffodil Society for his service. It is fair to say he liked being busy!

His Epitaph was “He liked real butter”

Mrs Tammy Smithers (Vic’s Stepdaughter)

With the disappointment of having to cancel our Daffodil show, due to the weather affecting and delaying flowers, behind us we held our autumn meeting and bulb sale at Virginia Water.
With a reduced quantity of bulbs available, the meeting commenced with the usual banter and chatter as our members congregated around the tables and the sound of coins falling into the coffers (music to our treasurer’s ears as we had to pay full charge for the cancelled hall booking ) our two hard working, but cheerful, ladies Garry and Kath, kept us supplied with a regular supply of tea and cake throughout the meeting
We welcomed two new members to our group, Howard Cooper and Kieth Hine and wish them both a long and happy association with us.
The raffle, including selected bulbs and various donations concluded the day’s event as our members departed to commence the task of potting and planting their new acquisitions, hoping for prize winning blooms next year.
Our next event will (hopefully) be our group show which will be held on Sunday31 March 2019, at our Cobham venue. Our chairman, Vic Coe, wishes to records his thanks to the committee and helpers who willingly give up their time to ensure that our group’s continuing success.
Our group sends its regards to all society members and wish one and all a successful year ahead both in health and the exhibiting of their blooms, both at national and local shows.

Mid Southern Daffodil Group report to Daffodil Society January 2018
Very best wishes to yourself and fellow committee members and appreciation for your combined work in keeping the society functioning.

Our show due to take place on the 25th March 2018 has been cancelled, exhibitors blooms having fallen victim to the recent bad weather.
We held a very successful bulb sale and talk last October and wish to record our thanks for the supply, and supplier, of the excellent bulbs. The afternoon session was a very informative and interesting interesting talk given by Andrew Gaunt , Plant Health and Seeds scientist from DEFRA. Whose theme was “ The role of the DEFRA Plant Health Service”  This role definitely needs to be more publicised and the general public be made aware of the problems we face from unregulated imports of flora and vegetables into the UK.

Our membership is slowly tailing off, sickness and old age being the main problem. We face the same problems as all other societies, lack of newer, younger members, and a reluctance of members to join the committee.

In 2016 we sadly lost our treasurer, Malcolm Hill. In his memory a trophy was supplied, and presented by his family at our 2017  show, a much appreciated gesture by all members.
We have also said “farewell” to Keith Garland  and John Smith, both founder members of our group. Also George Oakley, committee member, suffered a severe stroke and sadly is severely incapacitated.

Society Contacts
General Secretary

  • Mr Alex Burke
  • 62 Beechwood Avenue
  • Woodley
  • Reading
  • RG5 3DG
  • Telephone Number:
  • E-mail:

Chairman/Show Secretary

  • Stafford Salt
  • 46 Syke Ings
  • Richings Park
  • Iver
  • Buckinghamshire
  • SL10 9EU
  • Email: