The Maidstone & South Eastern Counties Avicultural Society wasformed in 1934 when a group of bird fanciers broke away from the local Fur Feather Club to form the society with its main goal to promote the keeping, breeding and exhibiting of cage birds of all varieties with monthly meetings. Also to hold an annual show to be known as the South Eastern National Open Show which is still its main aim today.
To the right is a photograph of some of the original members and the main officers elected. The M. P. for Maidstone, Mr. A. Bossam who became its first President, Mr. B. Town as the Chairman, Mr. J. K. Reynolds became General Secretary and Treasurer, the office he held for the next 44 years. He was well regarded by members young and old and to them became known as Our Jack
The Maidstone & South Eastern Counties Avicultural Society shows.In January 1935 it held its first annual open show which attracted some 300 exhibits and was held in the Mechanies Hall of the Corn Exchange, Maidstone and remained there until the outbreak of the Second World War. Although no show was held between the war years its monthly meetings carried on. 1945 saw the end of the war and although things were tight people still had their birds and the society really got going with its membership increasing yearly.The annual show had been moved to the main hall of the Corn Exchange to accommodate the increase in the number of exhibits, with exhibitors from all over the country. There it stayed until 1978 when again having out grown the size of hall with some 1600 exhibits it moved to the T. A. Hall, London Road, Ditton, a much larger hall.
After the death of its long serving Secretary Mr. Jack Reynolds, the 1979 show was held as a memorial show in his memory. It was the largest show ever held by the society with just over 2500 exhibits and the largest of all variety bird shows in country, outside the National Bird Show. Unfortunately it the early 1980's with the increase in IRA activity the T. A. Hall was closed for public events. Next move took it to the Ditton Community Centre, New Barn Road, Ditton and remained there for 10 years with entries on average of 2100 exhibits. At the end of the decade with cost increasing in more ways than one, the society brought the show back to Maidstone at the Market Hall, Barker Road, where it still holds its open show to this day. Although now only a one day show it still attracts nearly 1000 exhibits and have now introduced Trade Stands and Breeders Sales Tables to enhance the show.
Over the years the society never forgot its members and always strived to keep them interested at the monthly meetings with talks, slide shows, table shows etc. and can be proud of having had and still have some of the finest Breeders, Exhibitors and Judges within its membership:
J. K. Reynolds,R. Reynolds (Border Canaries),R. W. Clark (Yorkshire Canaries),W .Barden (Gloster Canaries),D. Andrews (Borders & Fife Canaries), D. Lunnon (British & Foreign);to name a few from the past and at present:R. C. Baker (Border Canaries),K. Baker (Gloster Canaries),K. Shelton (New Colour Canaries),B. Chitty (British) Mrs. J. Ralph (Foreign)
Welcome to the Maidstone and South Eastern Counties Avicultural Society Website