Judges & Selectors


Schools Competition

Alan Ketley judges many flower shows including the Taunton Flower Show. Trained at Kew Gardens, he was Vice Principal and Head of the Horticultural Department at Cornwall College. He has worked in the UK and in the Caribbean.

Individually Owned Gardens Competition

Alan Power came to the UK from Ireland to study horticulture at Writtle University in Essex inspired by my mother to follow a path into horticulture.  He has worked in some of the most beautiful and famous gardens in the UK, notably Mount Stewart in Northern Ireland, Hidcote in Gloucestershire and Stourhead in Wiltshire.  He also works with the ‘Gardeners World’ team and presented on ‘British Gardens in Time’ for BBC 4. He is a regular contributor on BBC Radio 4 and he lectures across Europe and in the USA. In 2016 he was presented with an Honorary Doctorate Degree from Writtle University.

Selectors – Individually Owned Gardens Competition

Nigel Cox is currently head of RHS horticulture at Bridgwater & Taunton College where he was until recently Curriculum Manager for land based courses both full and part time in horticulture, arboriculture and countryside management. He has been teaching at Cannington for some 15 years. He is a qualified garden designer and acts as a consultant to the growing media industry. In addition he is a professional associate with the RHS where he is an examiner, centre auditor, quality assurer as well as teaching science and plant health to the RHS students at RHS Rosemoor. Nigel is also involved on several expert panels on horticulture and education, gives regular talks to local garden clubs and judges at local flower shows.

Paul Cumbleton was for 11 years the Team Leader of the Alpine section at the RHS Wisley Garden, responsible for the rock garden, alpine meadow, crevice garden and the alpine display houses. Prior to that, he worked for more than 20 years for ADAS (the Agricultural Development and Advisory Service), helping with a variety of agricultural and horticultural scientific research. Whilst having a passion for all plants, he particularly enjoys growing alpines, and winter-growing South African bulbs.

Lucy Hetherington is a food scientist by training, also a lifelong gardener who for over 13 years has welcomed many visitors to her one-acre garden for the National Gardens Scheme. During 8 years as Somerset NGS County Organiser, she was responsible for visiting and approving new gardens to open for the public. Lucy has her own garden consultancy business which provides planting schemes, horticultural advice and hands-on maintenance for her corporate and private clients.