We were saddened to learn of the death of Guernsey horticulturalist David Miller, a founder of SCI's Horticulture Group, who passed away on 19 May 2010.
David was instrumental in forging closer links between the Institute of Horticulture, where he was a past President, and SCI. When the hoped-for merger between the two bodies failed, he helped set up SCI's Horticulture Group and steer it through its formative years. He was also an active member of the SCI's Membership Advisory Committee (MAC).
David was a stalwart of the Guernsey horticulture industry for over 40 years, and made a great contribution to UK horticulture as a whole. He joined Guernsey's States Horticultural Advisory Service in 1969, at a time when horticulture, along with tourism, were the mainstays of the island's economy.
However, David's main interest was in flowers, and he helped the Guernsey industry switch to flower production as demand for the island's tomatoes declined. In 1986 he became head of the Advisory Service, a post he held until he 'retired' in 1992.
He then threw himself into a new job as general manager of the Guernsey Clematis Nursery, where he helped Raymond Evison build his business to the leading position it now occupies. David was also part of the group behind the creation of Cornwall's Eden Project in 1997, and he continued to work for the Eden Project as a consultant.
David was always one to look ahead, and the encouragement and support he gave to young people at the outset of their horticulture careers, was fundamental to his philosophy.
Happily David's achievements were recognised within his lifetime. One of his proudest moments was a visit to Buckingham Palace in 2009 to receive the MBE for services to Guernsey horticulture.
Peter Grimbly, Acting Chairman, SCI Horticulture Group