GCA: Sign up for the International Garden Centre Conference

THERE?S still time to sign up for the International Garden Centre Conference taking place in Ireland this summer (August, 2014) says the Garden Centre Association?s (GCA) representative Paul Cooling.

Paul, who officially started his GCA role on the International Garden Centre Association (IGCA) board in January, replacing Sue Allen, is urging British garden centres to join the event.

The Chairman of Coolings Nurseries, who has been a long-time supporter of the IGCA, said: ?I am really getting into my new role now, although it?s only been a few months, and there are interesting and inspiring times ahead.

?The big event coming up is the International Garden Centre Congress which, this year, is being held in Ireland from August 10 until 15.?These international visits are the best way to learn and understand the culture of a different country and also of course to see some of the best garden centres in the world.

?The itinerary will also include other places of horticultural interest and national heritage. Already more than 130 delegates have signed up for this year?s event but there is always scope to accommodate a few more.?For full details, please visit www.igccireland2014.com.?

Paul?s father, Michael, was an early supporter of the IGCA. He spoke German and this endeared him to many of the host nations at the early Congresses.

Paul said: ?He took me to my first International Congress in Holland in 1978 and since then I?ve attended 18 in total. Carrying on the family tradition, I took my daughter Jessica to the most recent Congress I attended in Germany in 2012, where she participated in the study tour. It is a wonderful privilege to be representing the UK.?

The IGCA is committed to improving the state of the art of the garden centre industry. It exists to provide a forum for the mutual exchange of information to benefit similar minded independent garden retailers on a worldwide basis.

The GCA represents nearly 200 garden centres nationwide.

Through sharing information and its inspection programme the GCA helps members to achieve high standards in customer service, plant quality and reliability.

For further information, please call 0118 930 8918 or visit www.gca.org.uk. Alternatively, please log on to www.facebook.com/GardenCentreAssociation or follow the organisation on Twitter at www.twitter.com/GC_Association.

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