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Probationary Membership

Image © Stephen Studd

Probationary Membership

Information for Probationary Members

This is, at the discretion of the Guild's committee, offered to new starters in the profession, who can show high quality work communicating about gardening and/or horticulture in whatever form, meeting high quality standards, as determined by the GMG committee, but who remain unpublished or whose income as a garden communicator doesn’t meet the threshold to be declared to your tax authority (HMRC in the UK).

Probationary Members enjoy the same benefits and services within the Guild as Full Members. This means probationers can attend the Guild's programme of free garden visits, attend networking events, get discounted tickets to the Awards Lunch and other events, enter their work into the Awards free of charge and receive GMG News magazine and the regular e-bulletins. Probationers are also encouraged to join the lively Probationer's WhatsApp group.

Probationary Members do not have voting rights at the Annual General Meeting or at any Extraordinary General Meetings.

Many, although not all, Probationary Members request, and receive, a current Guild Full Member to act as their ‘buddy’ to help them navigate their first steps in the profession. Guild members acting as buddies do so as volunteers, and it may take some time for a new applicant to be paired with a suitable buddy.

What to Expect from your Buddy

  • Buddies can give advice and discuss ideas for potential work.
  • Buddies can give feedback on style and content.
  • Buddies can give advice on how and where to pitch ideas, but will not share their contact list with a probationary member.
  • Buddies cannot help to secure commissions.
  • Buddies cannot give advice on rates and fees, nor can they give advice about how to set up and run a business.
  • Buddies cannot give advice on unpaid fees or disputes with employers/commissioners.

Either party can choose to end the relationship, if it's not working for any reason.

We also have different ways that all members, full or probationary, share their knowledge and advice on our Facebook page and also WhatsApp groups.

Find out how to become a Probationary Member

If you're unsure as to which category would suit you best, and would like some guidance, please contact us.

Extending Probationary Membership

The Garden Media Guild is committed to being inclusive and supportive of our members including those with disabilities, long-term conditions and illnesses and caring responsibilities. Should you wish to extend your probationary membership by one calendar year, in relation to a situation that has prevented you from taking full advantage of your three-year probationary period, please contact the Guild Office with details, so that we can consider your request.

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