Former N&GC editor, Peter Dawson, dies

Peter was born in Surbiton on the 19th December 1940. As a young man Peter was interested in print and journalism and initially went to London to study typography. A job opportunity arose and he moved to Hereford to join a company, in what we would call today, their marketing department.

His passion and keeness for journalism grew and he saw advertised an opportunity in Croydon on a caravan magazine called Practical Caravan. It was whilst working in Croydon, he met Billie and they married in 1968.

Their initial home was a flat but it wasn’t long before they moved into a house with a good sized garden but they soon wanted a much larger garden and they found this in 1981 when they moved into a bungalow with a 1/3rd of an acre of land. They were in their element.

Garden Answers

His employers, Haymarket Publishing, knowing his passion for the garden and all plant life, approached him to launch a new magazine called Garden Answers. His contacts and his knowledge of the industry grew.

Nurseryman and Garden Centre

As time moved on another approach led him to join and edit the trade magazine, Nurseryman and Garden Centre. This broadened his knowledge of the industry further and his support of the industry, through the printed word, was widely respected.

Throughout his career Peter was always there for the launch of new products and plants and he travelled extensively on press trips throughout Europe, Costa Rica, Africa, California to name but a few.

When he retired from full time work he still continued to be involved with the industry doing PR work, supporting Exhibitions, press days and launch of new products. In recent years he worked with George Bullivant on Gardenforum.

Peter loved to travel and had 54 years with his wife traveling around the world, during breaks from work, but he always made sure that the garden was left OK. With Peter the garden came first.

Peter was always warmly welcomed by his colleagues and the trade. He was a person they could trust to be there and to give a fair report. In his spare time took up painting.

He was an avid computer user and over the years did a lot of work for the local Horticultural Society and local art group where, with Billie, his love for painting grew.

Peter passed away on the 28th January at home with his wife. His funeral will be at Surrey and Sussex Crematorium, the Memorial Chapel at 1.15pm on Thursday 16th February 2023.

Peter's wife, Billie, will be carrying out Peter's wishes of scattering his ashes at sea from a RNLI boat in late Spring.  This is a charity close to Peter's heart and where donations need to be directed to.

He also wished to make a donation to Marie Curie so Billie will match the total donations and give to the Marie Curie office at Caterham who looked after Peter so well.

To make a donation visit Funeral Details - Pinks Funeral Directors (

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