A horticultural society that recently held its 126th annual show and predates the Chelsea Flower Show has been presented with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.

Princess Alexandra, accompanied by the Lord Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire, presented the award to Stoke Poges, Wexham and Fulmer Horticultural Society at the Old Barn, Wexham Court Primary School on Thursday.

The award is the highest a voluntary group can receive in the UK and was given to the society for its work is 'passing horticultural knowledge and tradition from generation to generation since 1884'.

There were 90 people aged between 6 and 95 at the celebratory party, including pupils from three primary schools, Wexham Court, Stoke Poges and Fulmer Infant School.

Jon Homan, President Emeritus said: "Today we pay tribute to those, both past and present, whose enormous contribution has made this possible.”

The chairman Ruth Rooley added: “Gardening is known to improve health and well-being, wherever you live, whatever your age. It can be a most rewarding career or a very satisfying hobby.”

Sir Henry Aubrey-Fletcher commented “As Lord-Lieutenant I have the privilege, together with a number of my Deputy Lieutenants, to review the nominations made for organisations based in Buckinghamshire and to make comments. However, the decision as to who should receive the award is made by HM the Queen on the advice of a minister supported by a national expert’s panel.

"This entirely voluntary society is an outstanding example of a group dedicated to improving the lives of all in the locality regardless of age, ethnicity, faith or ability and they fully deserve their award.”

The Society has held a show every year since it was founded except during World War I and II. It remains a traditional community show with a large marquee to hold over 700 entries in a variety of classes, vegetables, fruit, flowers, home economics, arts and crafts and photography.

The Society has just over 300 members.