About Us

The Professional Gardeners’ Trust was set up by professional gardeners to encourage the raising of professional standards through further education and practical experience.  We are always keen to hear from potential new trustees. If you are interested in joining us, please send a CV and cover letter outlining how you might contribute to our success to chair.pgtrust@gmail.com.

It is critical to provide funding opportunities for training, both to encourage those entering the profession and to raise the skill levels of existing gardeners to meet the increasingly diverse range of demands made upon them.

The Trust is a Charity, number 1101169 and a Company Limited by Guarantee: registered No 4544242. The trustees meet twice a year, with the AGM in April.




  • Chairman, Sarah Wain – Sarah was born and raised in Australia, where she trained in horticulture. In the early 1980s she worked at RBG Kew where she met her husband Jim Buckland who was training there at the time. Since then, the couple have worked here and in Australia in public and private gardens including 29 years renovating West Dean Gardens together.


  • Trustee, Stephen Crisp – Stephen is Head of Horticulture for the United States Embassy in London where he has worked since1987.  He is a committee member of the London Gardens Network; he champions apprentices and is an RHS Britain in Bloom judge.  He is also an RHS Show garden judge and a selection panel member and was elected an RHS Associate of Honour for services to horticulture in 2017.
  • Trustee, Jim Buckland – Jim completed a Kew Diploma in 1982 and has since managed historic parks and gardens in both Australia and the UK. He retired as Gardens Manager at West Dean gardens, West Sussex in 2019 after 28 years.
  • Trustee, Mick Brown – With a background in teaching and floristry, Mick went on to study Horticulture at Capel Manor in the early 2000’s. He is now part of the garden management team at Chatsworth House, where he leads on training and development and is responsible for the learning experiences of students, apprentices and visiting professionals to the gardens.


  • Trustee, Sheila Das – Having changed career in 2006, Sheila completed the Kew Diploma and then went on to work for English Heritage at Wrest Park. She is now a Garden Manager at RHS Garden Wisley with responsibility for the Students and Apprentices, the Members’ Seed Scheme and the Edibles and Wellbeing gardens.
  • Trustee, Stephen McCallum – Having changed career from architecture to horticulture, Stephen worked for 10 years as Head Gardener at The Beechgrove Garden before joining The MacRobert Trust as Head of Gardens where he manages the Trust’s ornamental and productive gardens. He also manages The MacRobert Trust Horticultural Training Scheme and is proud of the growing MacRobert alumni of professional gardeners working across Scotland and beyond. He is also a committee member of the Chartered Institute of Horticulture and a Trustee with Scotland’s Garden Scheme.
  • Trustee, Simon Bagnall – Simon is Head of Gardens & Grounds for Worcester College Oxford. Simon leads a team of eight gardeners and is responsible for the development and maintenance of the 26 acre grade-II* garden and sports ground. Simon’s passion for historical gardens, horticultural craftsmanship and plants also sees him work as a consultant and mentor.
  • Trustee, George Hudson  – George is Head of Plants & Education at Walworth Garden, a South London charity dedicated to improving lives through horticulture. He teaches the City & Guilds Level 2 in Work-based Horticulture, as well as a range of other gardening oriented workshops.

  Helen Seal   

  • Awards Manager, Mercy Morris – Mercy works as a self-employed gardener and grows a lot of houseplants.  She was Conservation Manager at Plant Heritage for several years.
  • Reports Manager, Helen Seal – Helen works as a self-employed gardener and garden advisor and was Alpine and Woodland Supervisor at the University of Cambridge Botanic Garden for eight years.
  • Treasurer, Thys Terblanche – I am a Chartered Accountant, originally from South Africa, but I have been calling the UK my home since 2011.  I have held many finance roles at major corporations.  I enjoy informal gardening and attending to my allotment.
  • Hon. Secretary, Natasha Goodfellow – Natasha is a garden writer and editor and author of A London Floral (Finch Publishing). She writes for publications including Gardens Illustrated, Elle Decoration and Country Life and also curates events at the Garden Museum in Lambeth.