News and Recent Achievements

The Area is hosting another Zoom talk, this time by National Speaker Rita Braithwaite entitled Flowers on Show. This event is online by Zoom and is at 7:30 on Tuesday 15 June. To book your FREE place please contact Ann Simpson the Area Secretary by 2pm on the day of the talk and a Zoom invite will be sent to you.


We are pleased to launch the 2021 Area Photography Competition. The results will be chosen by attendees at the Area Weekend in Scarborough. For full information there is a factsheet you can download here


It’s National Flower Arranging day today, 7 May. This lovely design was created by our President Ann Harding.


The First National Virtual Show 2021 – ‘Springtime’

A message from our Area Chairman, Janet Ratcliffe:
“Many congratulations to the worthy winners from the N E Area in the National Show and well done to everyone who entered, there were some beautiful, creative and inspiring designs.
The Area had two Third awards, three Highly Commended and four Commended. I do hope you all enjoyed the experience and that you will continue to enter the Area and National competitions. Thank you everyone for representing the N E Area.


We are delighted to be able to report that past Area Chairman, past national Proof Reader, Area Associate of Honour (and many other things) Shirley Clegg has been awarded an MBE in the recently announced Honours List, for services to the Prison Visiting Service. Congratulations, Shirley.


National Photography Competition 2020 We are delighted and very proud to say that the winner of the Best in Show for the 2020 National Photography Competition was Anne Lindsay (Steeton FC) with her entry in Class 5 “Something Beginning with A”. This was featured, with much fanfare, during the National AGM that took place on Tuesday 6 October. Anne has very kindly given us permission to reproduce the image and here it is. Anne writes: “The photograph was one of over 200 taken at Southport Airshow in 2017. The weather was perfect for the occasion, the crowds on the promenade were massive so it was a case of holding your camera above the heads to capture the Red Arrows display.”

The “A” in question was, of course, “Airshow”. (Or even Red Arrows…)


Not that we want to be up to date or anything, but now that WAFA India has come to a triumphant close the baton has been passed on to New Zealand for the 2023 Show ‘Southern Sojourn’ and their rather good website is up and running.


Two pairs of competitors from New Dimensions Flower Club (Elaine Bedford / Carys Harrison and Susie Marsh / Christine Hinchcliffe) each won Commended in WAFA India class 1 (Broken Lines)


The official photograph of the 2020 Executive Committee. From L-R: Joan O’Brien (Projects Officer), Ann Simpson (Secretary), Janet Ratcliffe (Chairman), Sheila Drybrough (Vice Chairman), Sue Guilliatt (Treasurer)


Images taken by our Photography representative at the 2019 Annual General Meeting in Wakefield:

Retiring Chairman Ann Harding being given her President’s Badge by retiring President Joan O’Brien

Retiring Chairman Ann Harding handing over her Badge of Office to incoming Chairman Janet Ratcliffe

Janet with her own Club chairman Geraldine Carter (Halifax)

Janet Ratcliffe (Chairman) welcoming the new Vice Chairman Sheila Drybrough

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Joan O’Brien (President) and outgoing Judges’ Representative Pam Kitchen

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(L-R) Ann Harding (President), Sue Guilliatt (Treasurer), Janet Ratcliffe (Chairman), Sheila Drybrough (Vice Chairman)

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Ann Simpson (Secretary), Joan O’Brien (Projects Officer), Ann Harding (President), Sue Guilliatt (Treasurer), Janet Ratcliffe (Chairman)


We’re very proud to announce that the latest YouTube video posted on the NAFAS channel features a very talented member of the North East Area, Vanessa Wellock. Here is a link to the page, Vanessa is the first video listed. Don’t forget to turn your sound on!


The North East Area has four new Demonstrators!! Many congratulations to the following candidates who successfully passed their Area Demonstrators Test at Stockton-on-the-Forest on Tuesday 2 October: Daphne Dawson (York); Carole Wickham (Barnsley); Alex Gracey (Grassington) and Jo Purdy (Scarborough).


At the Dazzling Diamond Dinner at the Grosvenor House Hotel, London it is with great pleasure to announce that the winner of the first prize (the diamond necklace) was won by a club in the North East Area.

Images taken at the successful Area Luncheon 2019 at York Racecourse on Saturday 22 June which included a talk by Pat Hutchinson entitled “A Scenic Voyage to the South Pacific”

Above: Sue Guilliatt, Brenda Jones and Janet Ratcliffe

Above: National Chairman Jan Law, George Smith MBE, Sheila Drybrough

Pictures from the 2019 Great Yorkshire Show of our Stand and the Workshops which proved very popular!


Some pictures taken at the 2018 AGM at Wakefield in November:

The main arrangement, designed by Ann Simpson (Area Secretary)

(L-R:) Area Projects Officer Brenda Jones, Area Secretary Ann Simpson, Area Chairman Ann Harding, Meeting Chairman Sue Spencer (the Area Presdent was unfortunately indisposed), Area Treasurer Sue Guilliatt, Area Vice Chairman Janet Ratcliffe

Sue Spencer congratulating the incoming Area Second Vice Chairman Sheila Dryborough

Sue Spencer and the incoming Deputy Area Teachers Representative Catherine Gledhill

Sheila Dryborough and the Area Chairman Ann Harding


Denby Dale Flower Club celebrated its 45th anniversary last month with a Lunch at Restaurant 315 in Huddersfield. Invited guests included two Past Chairmen of the North East Area Tony Cleaver and Sue Maddocks each of which proposed a toast to the Club.


Some pictures (by Anne Lindsay) of the very enjoyable Area Luncheon at the Pavilions, Harrogate.


Are you a keen competitor, interested in becoming a Judge or indeed a Judge already? Then you’ll be interested in the 2019 North East Area Judges’ Refresher Day taking place on Saturday 19 March 2019 at Wigginton Recreational Hall at 10am (for a 10:30 start). Places are available on a first come first served basis and application forms can be downloaded here (it is also available in the Links and Downloads area of this website.)


National Flower Arranging Day 2018 (Friday 4 May) took place with flowers, arrangements and posies being left at plenty of places throughout the Area. Thanks to all who took part, here are some of the photographs that were sent in:

Steeton FC

Steeton FC

Steeton FC

Filey FC

Scarborough FC

Scarborough FC (we think it was a relief to get this one!!)


2017 Annual General Meeting at Wakefield Because of ill health the 2017 AGM took place without the outgoing Chairman Joan O’Brien. Pictured here is Ann Harding, the incoming Chairman getting her badge of office from Sue Spencer the outgoing Area President…

Janet Ratcliffe here getting her badge upon becoming First Vice Chairman…

and a look at the audience gathering in the Hall prior to the meeting.

The lovely flowers were designed by Sheila Rodgers (as was the pedestal in the entrance hall). After luncheon members and guests were entertained by “The B Team” comprising Eileen Barraclough, Judy Watker, June Borrowdale and Sue Maddocks, compèred by Tony Cleaver and assisted (if that be the word) by your Webmaster Peter Mathers presenting an entertainment called “The West End comes to Wakefield”. Here are some pictures from the event…



Festive Flower and Food Show Blackpool 2017 Congratulations to all North East Area competitors who entered the 2017 Show in Blackpool. The award winners were: Class 1 (“Inclement Weather”) Vanessa Wellock and Lucy Hutton Smith – 2nd; Carys Harrison and Elaine Bedford – Commended. Class 2 (Festive Candelabra): Margaret Titman – Commended. Class 4 (“By the Winter Fireside”): Anne Davison – 2nd. Class 6 (“Time to Party”): Charlotte George – Very Highly Commended. Class 12 (“Plantaholic”): Susan Fairhurst – 3rd. Class 15 (“Skewered”): Eileen Barraclough – 3rd.


Introducing new judges to the North East Area! Four of the six newly qualified Area Judges attended the Council Meeting on Saturday 14 October and were presented their Judges badges. The new judges are (L-R): Sheila Drybrough (Bradford), Joan McBurney (York), Joyce Hearnshaw (Huddersfield) and Dawn Meakin (Huddersfield). Not pictured are Rebecca Hough from Peterlee, Co Durham and John Hawkridge from Boroughbridge. Also pictured are (again, L-R) Sheila Rodgers (Deputy Judges Representative), Joan O’Brien (Area Chairman) and Pam Kitchen (Area Judges Representative)


We are delighted to announce that the North East Area has a new Flower Club! Based in Richmond, North Yorkshire, the Antheia Flower Club is a contemporary Club that meets at Richmond Town Hall. They are on Facebook (here is a link ) so please support them by “liking” their page, or why not go to a meeting to show support? Their name comes from Antheia, one of the Greek Graces. She is, of course, the goddess of flowers!


National AGM (London) 11 October 2017 Two North East Area members were featured at the National AGM held at the Bishopsgate Institute, London on Wednesday 11 October. Tony Cleaver (New Earswick and Viking Flower Clubs) was presented with his National Associate of Honour award by National Chairman Sheila Hadlow (the citation was read by Joan O’Brien) and your Webmaster, Peter Mathers (also New Earswick) has been elected as a member of the Board of Directors. Pictured below is Tony with retiring National Chairman Sheila Hadlow, and Tony giving his acceptance speech.

Picture © Chrissie Harten with thanks

Picture © Chrissie Harten with thanks


A well attended Education Day was held on Saturday 23 September at Wigginton Recreational Hall tutored by Joan Woodhead.

The delegates

(L-R) North East Area Education Representative Carole Jarvis and Joan Woodhead

Some of the delegates hard at work

and not forgetting the delicious lunch!


Lonely Bouquets 2017 STEETON FLOWER CLUB teamed up with Steeton Bobbins WI to make lonely bouquets, 29 people turned up we had lots of fun and made 29 bouquets which were left around or handed to people in Steeton and surrounding area. The flowers were kindly donated by Tesco in Skipton and the Co-op in Steeton. Thanks to all for this wonderful opportunity to get our art into the outside world!

Making Bouquets

Bouquets we Made

Finding a Bouquet