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Royal Botanical and Horticultural Society of Manchester and the Northern Counties Archive

Date range: 1827 to present.

The Royal Botanical and Horticultural Society of Manchester and the Northern Counties was founded in 1827 to lay out gardens for the recreation of the citizens of Manchester and to further the scientific disciplines of botany and horticulture.

In the nineteenth century the Society managed extensive gardens at Old Trafford, but their popularity declined as the middle classes moved out of the city, and the site was disposed of in 1907.

During the twentieth century the Society has undertaken two main activities: the running of flower shows, and the support of other organizations – societies, charities and educational institutions – associated with botany and horticulture.

The archive is substantially complete, and comprises title deeds, administrative records such as minute books, financial records and rule books, annual reports, and photographs.

As well as illuminating the Society’s own history, the archive has wider significance for studies of the social history of Manchester and the north-west region, particularly in the nineteenth century, and for research into garden history and the development of horticulture and botany as scientific and practical pursuits.

Finding aids

Catalogue available online via ELGAR.


The John Rylands Library

Using the reading rooms in the John Rylands Library

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