September to December are being held at a NEW VENUE
Venue: Alkrington Tennis Club, Uplands, Alkrington, Middleton, Manchester. M24 1FA
This will be at least for the following dates – September 11th, October 9th, November 13th and December 11th. January and February are ZOOM meetings to avoid travel in the depths of winter.

All meetings are held at the Parish Hall of St Thomas More. The venue is in Alkrington, a suburb of Middleton, Manchester, and only a half mile from the M60 ring road. (see Find Us).

All are on a Saturday – please arrive from 7.00pm for a 7.45pm start.

Meetings are presented by a different speaker each month, where they share their experiences with members using a digital presentation and/or plants. Occasionally we have meetings where Branch members share experiences on growing plants, soil types, seed propagation etc, all designed to help members get the best from the hobby.

There is an interval for refreshments halfway through the evening, and tea/coffee are available before the meeting also. There is also a raffle every month with prizes donated by the members.

There is a monthly charge of £2 to cover the cost of the speaker, refreshments, and a raffle ticket, but your first visit will be free.

Several extra events are also taking place. Please consider visiting if you are unable to make the evening events.

If you wish for further details please contact the secretary who will be more than willing to offer any help he can.


January 2nd Russell Wagner Mesembs Virtually – “Namaqualand in My Garden” (Zoom Meeting)
January 9th Rob Stevenson Turbinicarpus, Rapicactus, Kadenicarpus and Acharagma (Zoom Meeting)
February 13th Harald Jainta Lithops of Namibia (Zoom Meeting)
March 13th Terry Goodfellow An absolute beginners’ guide to making art images from your cactus and succulent pictures (Zoom Meeting)
April 11th Mesembs Virtually – (Zoom Meeting)
April 17th Hazel Taylor Adventure into Borneo (Zoom Meeting)
May 8th Wolfgang Metorn The Genus Echinocereus in Habitat (Zoom Meeting)
June 12th Brian McDonough Growing Aloes (Zoom Meeting)
SUNDAY July 11th Mesemb Virtually/Branch Meeting Combined Mesembs of Namibia Roy Earle & The genus Cephalophyllum Brian Kemble (Zoom Meeting)
August 7th (FIRST SATURDAY) Open Day at Peter Bint’s (4pm-9pm) Plants for sale: mainly cacti as I need to make space for the expanding Lithops collection. Mature plants, younger plants and also free plants which need some TLC.
September 11th Paul Spracklin Gardening with Succulents
SUNDAY October 10th – 7.30pm Mesemb Virtually A Personal A-Z of Mesembs Part 2 – Andy Young (Zoom Meeting)
October 16th (THIRD SAT) Ivor Crook Some Euphorbias of Southern Africa
November 13th Martin Lowry Bolivia – Part 12: Unexplored Mountains
December 11th AGM & Quiz What is the Question Quiz – really easy – you get the answer BEFORE the questions!
January 2022 Andreas Hofaker Notocactus A-Z (ZOOM MEETING – to save people travelling in the depths of winter)


We are a Branch of the British Cactus and Succulent Society.

Early History

In 2017 Manchester Branch celebrated its 70th Anniversary. Starting out as the Lancashire Branch of the old National Cactus and Succulent Society (NCSS) in December 1946, the first proper meeting was in Feburary 1947. In those days Manchester Council had an absolutely splendid greenhouse situated in Alexandra Park, which is just out of the city centre, which housed the magnificent collection of cacti and succulents donated by the widow of Charles Darrah in 1903. It was at this very venue that a group of enthusiasts decided to emulate the step taken by Bradford Branch, to form a branch where people of like minded interest could discuss, exchange information and plants and generally enjoy one anothers company.

Both Branch and Society flourished and at its height in the 70s, 80s and 90s the Branch had over 100 members and the Society reached 5000 members mainly national but with a fair representation from overseas.

Although the Branch is smaller these days the membership is still very keen for the most part. We try to provide an interesting programme each year to help all members enjoy the hobby.


The Manchester Branch today

There is a meeting every month on the second Saturday at 7.45pm which lasts till about 10pm. We make a charge of £2 on entry which entitles you to a raffle ticket and refreshments in addition to the talk/exhibition.

Our speakers usually show slides, though some bring actual plants to talk about and hand round for people to peruse. There are often plants on sale at very reasonable prices and an Interest Table is set up every month for people to display their plants for others to enjoy, or have them identified, or to provide a theme maybe connected with the speakers talk.

In addition to these talks each month we also provide other points of interest. Local Branches offer Open Days for members to visit and there will always be someone willing to offer transport to these events. We have such a day in Manchester every two years and this is the year.

Every Spring there is a Cactus Mart where cactus and succulent nurseries bring plants for sale.

We have two mini shows a year, in May and August, which the members actually judge showing their personal preferences amongst the plants on display. In October we host the North West Mesemb Show. This has been held in Middleton since 2007, after moving from the Northwich venue.

Nobody in the Branch claims to be a specialist but we all have experience which we gladly pass on to those who need it.

We are a friendly bunch and invite you to come along and savour the atmosphere. You do not have to join the Society in order to see what its like. Come along and see and if you feel this is for me then you will be welcome to join. For further details see the Contact Us section.


The British Cactus and Succulent Society

At the beginning of 1983 the two existing cactus societies merged to form one Society to deal with the needs of cactophiles all over the country.

The National Cactus and Succulent Society (NCSS) merged with the Cactus and Succulent Society of Great Britain (CSSGB) to form the British Cactus and Succulent Society (BCSS) and that is the situation to this day.

Membership of the Society costs £15 per annum (less for Associates, Senior Citizens and Juniors) which entitles you to be a member of a nearby branch, provides you with 4 journals about a variety of cactus and succulent matters annually but most of all enables you to meet many like minded individuals.