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UK: Broadcasting and horticultural legend to be given Honorary Degree

Well-known horticultural journalist and consultant Peter Seabrook MBE will receive an Honorary Degree from Writtle University College next month.

An alumnus of Writtle, Mr Seabrook will be given the award at the Graduation Ceremony on Friday 7 September at Chelmsford Cathedral.

He is being honoured for being an ambassador for the University College and for his contributions to the horticultural industry.



Mr Seabrook has worked as The Sun’s gardening editor for over 40 years and was a presenter on Pebble Mill at One on BBC 1, Gardeners World on BBC 2, the BBC’s Chelsea Flower Show coverage and, for 20 years, Coast to Coast on PBS in North America.

He is well-recognised for his contributions to horticulture. He holds three RHS (Royal Horticultural Society) Awards: the Victoria Medal of Honour, Associate of Honour and the Harlow Carr Medal (for services to Northern Horticulture) - and is believed to be unique in this respect.

His activities in the trade include being a founder member of The Garden Centre Association, the British Association of Landscape Industries and the Garden Media Guild. He promotes and represents the horticultural industry, continuing to inspire children to grow fruit, vegetables and flowers through a variety of school programmes.

A local resident, he has maintained strong links with Writtle since completing his diploma in 1956. He was awarded a Fellowship in 1997 and, over many years, has continued to make valuable contributions to the benefit of students. This has included being a regular visiting speaker, most recently in March last year when he was the headline speaker of a public evening lecture about the value of community horticulture.

Mr Seabrook said: “My two-year Commercial Horticultural course at Writtle provided a depth of knowledge and number of fellow student friendships, which have proved invaluable throughout my working life. I am proud to receive this award and do so in the certain knowledge many people and, not least my lecturers at Writtle, have helped and supported me in the things I have achieved and am still able to do."

Professor Tim Middleton, Vice-Chancellor of Writtle University College, said: “We are delighted to recognise Peter Seabrook in this way for his promotion of the horticultural sector both as a well-respected gardening journalist and as a founding member of some of the key organisations in the land-based industries, which offers many exciting opportunities for our graduates.

“Peter has been a fantastic ambassador for the University College and we thank him for enriching the learning of our students over many years.

“Our Graduation Ceremonies are always a proud day for our graduates as well as their friends, families and our staff but this year’s event is particularly special as we celebrate our 125th anniversary. Peter shows what can be achieved with a Writtle qualification and we look forward to hearing of the successes of our graduates as they embark on their careers.”


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