An organisation which has offered help and advice to gardening clubs across Dorset for 85 years could close if no one steps forward to take up a major role.

The Dorset Federation of Horticultural Societies (DFHS), an organisation of around 70 gardening and horticultural clubs, might have to close at the end of this year if no-one opts to step in as secretary and treasurer.

82-year-old Joy Everington, who currently holds the position, recently suffered an injury and said she feels now is the right time to step down.

She said: “I have been doing this job for 18 years and not just for the fact I have broken my wrist, but just feel I can’t divide the time anymore.

“I don’t do modern technology at all, I just feel it is time to give up.

“It’s difficult to find committee members these days. I feel early retired people who usually come into organisations like this have commitments than they used to. There’s so much demand for volunteer work of all kinds.”

The DHFS helps to organise speakers for club and society meetings, including their details, fees and travel expenses, as well as judges for competitions. It also organises an annual showing and competition between the clubs.

It is affiliated with many local groups across the county, including the Radipole and Southill Horticultural Society and Dorchester Agricultural Society.

Joy said: “I became interested in growing and showing when I met my husband 65 years ago and realised how fun and rewarding it was. The shows are just so entertaining, I have really enjoyed it."

She added that it would be a positive step for the younger generation to get involved in gardening events.

“It’s very refreshing when get a young person who has just started to take an interest in horticulture," Joy said.

"Gardening folk are lovely and gardening is one of the most healthy occupations you can spend your time doing."

DHFS membership can cost as little as £10 and is open to any gardening club in Dorset and the surrounding counties. If you are interested in taking up the role of secretary and treasurer, email