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The Royal Society of Biology has partnered with Defra to deliver a series of plant health networking events and workshops aiming to develop a diverse community from across the sector and build UK plant health capability, capacity and resilience.

The partnership builds on several previous and ongoing RSB plant health initiatives. These include the Plant Health Professional Register and the Plant Health Undergraduate Studentships programme and a Plant Health Professionals networking group on LinkedIn.

Other plant science related activities from the RSB include our free monthly Plant Science newsletter, as well as several policy outputs and resources focusing on various aspects of plant health. To subscribe to the newsletter, visit the Plant Science group webpage or email 

The Society also runs the RSB Plant Science Group, which is comprised of RSB Member Organisations from across the plant sciences. The group provides a platform for knowledge exchange regarding matters in the plant sciences sector as well as a pathway by which Member Organisations can contribute to RSB outputs in this area.

Upcoming events

Behind the scenes at Kew Gardens | 10 October 2024 | Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

An opportunity to visit one of the UK's most important botanical research institutes, participate in guided tours and engage with experts in plant health. Early bird registration is now open to members of the Plant Health Register via the event page

Previous events

Plant health conference | 6 June 2024 | Zoom

A free, online conference highlighting the ongoing work of emerging and established plant health professionals. The event included keynote lectures, discussing topics such as the Nagoya Protocol and the importance of best plant health practice in nurseries, as well as expert panel discussions, and flash talks from a range of early career scientists. 

Australia's plant health and biosecurity system | 20 March 2024 | Zoom

How to communicate science, win friends and influence people | 2 February 2024 | Zoom

Visit to the BIFoR FACE facility | 13 September 2023 | Birmingham

An exclusive guided tour around the BIFoR FACE facility, which is the second Free Air Carbon Dioxide Enrichment facility worldwide and the only one in the Northern Hemisphere. Attendees got to visit the Wolfson Advanced Glasshouses and Winterbourne Gardens at the University of Birmingham. 

Plant health conference | 25 May 2023 | Read the news story

Managing diseases found in the grapevines and tree crops of California | 29 March 2023 | Read the news story

Showcasing Defra’s R&D Programme | 17 January 2023 | Read the news story

International Standards in Africa | 14 September 2022 | Read the news story

Summer Conference 2022 | 21 June 2022 | Read the news story

GB Plant Biosecurity Strategy | 16 March 2022 | Read the news story

Plant Health Summit for Future Leaders | 2-3 March 2021


Plant Health Professional Development Advisory Group

The initiatives delivered under this grant are supported by a volunteer committee – the Plant Health Professional Development Advisory group. Group members aim to represent a variety of sectors and academics in plant health.

Group membership:

  • Jeremy Pritchard (Chair) - University of Birmingham
  • Charles Lane - Fera Science Ltd
  • Jassy Drakulic - Royal Horticultural Society
  • Geraint Parry - Association of Applied Biologists
  • Lucy Carson-Taylor - Animal and Plant Health Agency
  • Clarinda Burrell - Scottish Forestry
  • Mimi Tanimoto - Plant Health Consultant
  • Stephanie Godliman - Department of Food, Environment & Rural Affairs
  • Alison Wilson - Department of Food, Environment & Rural Affairs
  • Gail Preston - University of Oxford