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Garden Centre Association appoints Alyson Haywood as inspector

Alyson Haywood 725 x 500

ALYSON Haywood has been named as the Garden Centre Association’s (GCA) new inspector this week (December 21, 2015).

Her most recent role was as Head of Horticultural Quality Control for Wyevale Garden Centres. Prior to that she was Managing Director of Moreton Park Garden Centre in Shropshire.

Iain Wylie, GCA Chief Executive, said: “I am delighted Alyson has accepted the appointment and that she’ll be working with the GCA again. She has spent all of her working life in the industry and a significant number of those years working at senior level in garden centres.

“She has a very impressive CV and is an experienced and passionate horticulturalist with a breadth of experience in retail, marketing, business development and turnaround, and is now a Business Improvement and Development Consultant and horticultural specialist.

“Alyson started her garden centre career at the Grosvenor Garden Centre in 1987, and shortly afterwards moved to the newly opened Notcutts Garden Centre in Solihull in 1988 as Horticultural Advisor/Garden Designer.

“After this Alyson went to Wyevale Garden Centres as Horticultural Manager at Northampton Wyevale Garden Centre.

“While on maternity leave, she gained a post graduate teaching certificate that then led to five years as a part-time Lecturer in Horticulture at Rodbaston College Staffordshire and Telford College of Arts.”

But it was not long before she was back working in garden centres.

Alyson explained: “I missed garden centres so much I went back to the newly opened Wyevale Garden Centre in Telford and went on to become a Regional Manager with Wyevale Garden Centres.

“I was also a Training, Development and Recruitment Manager for Wyevale and was responsible for determining the training, development and recruitment strategies to ensure that the company met its demands. I implemented a training plan for 120 stores and also devised and implemented a competency-based recruitment and selection process for all levels of management, and personally delivered specialist training to other corporate employees.”

Alyson was also a General Operations Manager at Wyevale Garden Centres and was responsible for six Regional Managers who jointly controlled a turnover of approximately £110 million.

Her other roles have included: General Manager at Woodlands Nurseries, General Manager at Bridgemere Garden World and Head of Nurseries and Regional Manager with The Garden Centre Group.

In her spare time Alyson enjoys walking and trekking in remote and challenging areas.

For further information, please call 0118 930 8918. Alternatively, visit, log on to or follow the organisation on Twitter at

Photo credit: Alyson Haywood, who has been named as the GCA’s new inspector.

Source : Garden Centre Association Press Release 

22 December 2015

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Thank you for the excellent presentation that you gave at Woodbury Park on Thursday morning. It was very interesting and thought-provoking for our Retail members. The feedback has been excellent.

Martin Elliott. Chief Executive - Home Hardware.

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