British Cactus and Succulent Society
Back in 1948 I was out walking with my parents in Kingston upon Thames, and the first house past the Hawker aircraft factory had a few plants for sale at the gate. This is how I came to buy cactus number one - a strange thing to do some of my friends would say, but what do they know? I joined the London Cactus Club in 1950 and met Brian Makin and Gorden Rowley there. The Club eventually disbanded and I joined the Great Britain society for a few years. I then sold most of my collection and, after a long break for work commitments, came back to the hobby around 1990 (I have never been able to figure out why it happened just then). I joined what was now the BCSS, and the CSSA; Jean and I have been to seven CSSA conventions in the USA as well as the 1998 IOS Congress in Cape Town.
For the Branch I edit the newsletter and maintain the web site (and am the immediate ex-Chairman). For the Society I am now in my twelth year as the slide librarian and have recently helped to complete a project to digitise the slide sets; my job (Slide and Digital Programmes Librarian) now mainly involves writing digital programmes to CD or DVD before sending them to branches.
Cacti still make up over half of my collection, which is housed in two small to medium greenhouses, but I am growing more and more succulent plants from other families now. I particularly enjoy plant propagation, especially from seed, but have reigned back on that due to inevitable space problems. I have never deliberately specialised, but suppose that it happens to some extent.