In a joint statement with the SGD issued yesterday, publisher James Pembroke said:
It has come to our attention that ProLandscaper have been claiming to advertisers that their magazine goes to all SGD members. We can confirm that this is wholly untrue.
Jim Wilkinson, the publisher of ProLandscaper has written to Juliet Seargent, the chairman of the SGD, to confirm that they have never been given the membership list, so can never have reached all our members. They have since taken down any such claims from their website and media pack.
Whereas we welcome growth in our sector, we want to ensure that everyone is clear about where we stand in the market. The Garden Design Journal is free to all 1,274 SGD members and is a major reason for joining. The journal also has 1,700 fully-paid subscribers.
The Pro Landscaper magazine launched in September 2011 claiming circulation figures of over 5,000 and said "Our new, fresh and up to-date controlled circulation means that all the major contractors, designers and architects receive the publication each month, as do all APL, BALI and SGD members."
Speaking this morning to the chairman of the Association of Professional Landscapers, Mark Gregory and chairman of the British Association of Landscape Industries, Chris Carr, sensing the implications of such a move, both were keen to stress that neither of their respective organisations have ever lent or sold details of their membership lists.
Mark Gregory said "Never, never, never! We never sell or give away our members' details. Our members would lynch us if we did."
Chris Carr told me: "We don't lend or sell our email list. I couldn't even buy the list for our own Q Lawns' business if I wanted to and I'm the BALI chairman. It's just not possible."
The BALI office told me that their members details are open to view so if someone wanted painstakingly copy them then they can but they wouldn't get a list from BALI.
Only BALI may email its own members for marketing and association issues.
I'm awaiting further comment from SGD chair Juliet Sargeant.