Whetman Pinks of Devon Receives The Queens Award for Enterprise for International Trade

Queens Award

Ornamental horticulture company Whetman Pinks is celebrating being named as a winner of the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise – the UK’s highest accolade for business success. The citation refers to the Company’s ‘Outstanding Contribution to International Trade’.

Based in Ashcombe, near Dawlish, Devon, Whetman Pinks was founded in 1936 and employs 32 people from the local area. Whetman breeds and propagates hybrid Dianthus (Pinks) and exports to a worldwide market including mainland Europe, Japan, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. It is the only commercial Pinks specialist in the world.

As a first time winner of the Queen’s Award for Enterprise, the company is single-minded in its pursuit of excellence and customer satisfaction. Sales are achieved via trade shows – mainly abroad, publications and its wholesale catalogue as well as with the invaluable support of overseas intermediaries. Where it is uneconomical to supply directly or import restrictions exist, the Company negotiates to issue licenses to propagate.

Queens Award Group Photo

Approximately 150 Queen’s Awards have been announced this year for outstanding business achievement in the fields of International Trade, Innovation and Sustainable Development. MD Carolyn Bourne said that receiving the Queen’s Award would contribute greatly towards helping to promote the UK Ornamental Horticulture industry around the world.

She added that ‘the thrill and pride of winning comes as a wonderful boost to morale in these difficult times for the industry, where month after month of untypical weather has caused major problems to add to the woes of the recession. In a year which has included a Gold Medal at Chelsea, a regional Employer of the Year award and Overall Ornamental Grower of the Year Award, the Queen’s Award in her Jubilee year comes as a magnificent finale.’

Above all she expressed thanks to all her colleagues at Whetman for the hard work without which it would never have been possible.

Hello again! So far so good for 2013.

The early part of the year has been busy for us on the nursery. We are preparing everything for the coming season – so this means checking that all our equipment is functioning correctly, that the glass is sparkling clean to let in as much light as possible, and cutting hedges before the birds start nesting. With the volume of rain we have had in the last 8 months, we were astonished when an old ivy covered oak tree started to migrate down a slope towards the brook, threatening to pull overhead power lines with it. It has now been felled for safety but the rooks who fancied setting up home there were not too pleased.

We have just come back from a trade show in France where a plant of Memories was entered in the new product competition. We were delighted to receive a Special Mention for it – we managed to get some flowers open by using lights for a month or so.

We are delighted to report that royalties collected in the first 6 months since the launch of Memories have topped more than £8,000 which has been sent to Alzheimer’s Society. Our target of £15,000 looks really achievable and thanks to all for your donations and buying Memories.

Keep a look out for our special offers.

Good gardening!



Whetman Pinks, as a member of the BNCS and in support of their chosen charity, has agreed to donate the receipts of royalties collected from the sales of Memories until December 2013.   We hope to raise in excess of £15,000 and hope to inspire you, our valued friends and customers, to help us achieve this figure. On the order form, you will find there is an opportunity to add a voluntary contribution of your own to Alzheimer’s Society, should you wish.