Talking with Pearl Evans, of the Rochford & District Fuchsia and Garden Society (January 20th 2011)
Rochford Life: Pearl, having just been talking about your role in Rochford WI, I understand you are also something in the Rochford Fuchsia Society?
Pearl: Yes, I was actually one of its founding members. The lady who used to live opposite was talking with me one day about our fuchsias and she said, shall we start a club about fuchsias, so we did it and that would be thirty years ago. Just because our numbers have gone down we’ve combined it with ‘Garden’ now so it is Rochford & District Fuchsia and Garden Society so we cover anything, because I think people were a little fed up with the limitation of just fuchsias.
RL: So what does the Society do?
Pearl: We have a programme of monthly meetings, meeting in the WI Hall on the third Monday of each month, except December, from 8 to 10pm, and we have a bimonthly newsletter. We also hold a show every year in the Hawkwell Village Hall at the end of July.
RL: OK, a key question, how many fuchsias have you got?
Pearl: Well I haven’t got as many now, because I’ve lost about ten this winter. The snow and cold came on so quickly; there were ones outside that I should have taken in. I used to have them right across the front but because that road keeps getting flooded, the salty water kills everything out there. Mind you I’ve still got one down the garden which wasn’t recognised as a proper hardy but it’s survived a number of years. It may be that because we are in the South and we’re a little more protected, they seem to survive.
RL: Can I ask you, why do you keep going? You do the WI and you do this? Why do you keep going?
Pearl: Well you can’t give up. I like to be involved. I don’t like just sitting there, I like to keep doing things, so I also have my sowing, knitting and cooking and looking after the family.
RL: Well that’s amazing, thank you, Pearl for that. That’s very interesting. Thank you again