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The four founder members of the SBA - Ian Baillie, Craig Coussins, Jimmy Russell and Hector Riddell - met at the Royal Caledonian Horticultural Society Spring flower show at Meadowbank Stadium in 1978, over Craig's display from his own collection. They went on to form the Association in 1979.
Jimmy Russell held the post of SBA Secretary well into the 1980s, and the others held a variety of posts as required for the growing and changing Association. Sadly he has passed away but his memory lives on.
The SBA went from strength to strength, exhibiting at the Royal Highland Show, where they won a Large Gold for their first exhibit, the Ayr Flower Show, and at the RCHS Spring and Autumn shows when they were held at Meadowbank Stadium.
Through Craig Coussins' contact with Bill Graham of Ayr, who was a Scottish pioneer of bonsai, Bill's collection forms the nucleus of the National Bonsai Collection of Scotland which was originally housed at Malleny Gardens in Balerno.
The Association was based in Edinburgh but soon branched out to embrace groups in Ayr, Perth, Forth Valley (originally Stirling) Glasgow and Penicuik, amongst others. The Association maintains links with other bonsai groups in Scotland, eg Grampian Bonsai, as well as other UK bonsai organisations.