Watch Your Back logo

Keeping gardeners and horticulturists safe under the sun

Watch Your Back! is a sun protection campaign for gardeners and horticulturists. Our aim is to raise awareness of skin cancer, by promoting the benefits of good sun protection and regular skin checking habits.

Our NEW ‘Sun Protection Accreditation’ scheme will help garden centres, nurseries and horticultural organisations ensure that their customers and staff are educated and protected, keeping everyone safe.

Get Sun Protection Accredited

Why gardeners and horticulturists are at risk

Those who spend lots of time outdoors can underestimate the risk of accumulated sun exposure. However, skin cancer has reached epidemic levels, and with incidence rising rapidly each year, developing healthy habits have never been more important.

Our aim is to raise awareness of this to everyone from the amateur gardener to professional horticulturist and landscaper, keeping everyone outside, doing what they do, for longer!

Sun Protection Tips and Advice

Our Ambassadors

We are backed by a team of celebrity gardeners and horticulturalists, helping us spread the word.

Our team includes some of the best-known faces in the horticultural industry. All are keen to ensure our message reaches as many people as possible and each has a unique reason for supporting the Watch Your Back! campaign:

Charlie Dimmock

“It’s fantastic that so many horticulturists, organisations and retail groups back this campaign , which is really helping raise awareness and in turn create impact on melanoma.”

Alan Titchmarsh

“The ‘Watch Your Back’ campaign makes huge sense and reminds all gardeners that their own health is every bit as important as that of their plants.”

Adam Frost

“How many times have you been caught out in the garden and ended up with a red neck? This message is simple – sunburn is dangerous so don’t be ridiculous – use sun protection!”

About our 2021 campaign

The Watch Your Back! sun protection campaign was launched in 2016 to raise awareness of melanoma and other forms of skin cancer to all who love gardening.

Although we are all vulnerable to the effects of the sun, gardeners tend to spend a lot of time outdoors and many can underestimate the damage caused by UV light. To get this message across, each year our campaign is promoted by garden centres, who promote our tips and advice in-store and on their socials and websites.

New initiative
This year, we are widening our reach and deepening our impact, launching a new Sun Protection Accreditation scheme to protect not only gardeners, but all those who work in the horticultural industry, helping keep everyone educated, informed and protected. See here.

New partners
We are also delighted to announce three new partners: The Association of Professional Landscapers (The APL), the Garden Industry Manufacturers Association (GIMA) and the Horticultural Trades Association (HTA). We will be working with each organisation to widen awareness to their members, creating an even bigger, positive impact on skin cancer in the industry.

Our campaign is more important than ever. Due to COVID-19 many millions more will be staying home, taking to their gardens and balconies this summer, so it is even more vital that we continue our good work. With 44 new cases of melanoma diagnosed every day, this disease stops for no virus, and so neither will we.

Building support
Our campaign is backed by 9 of the UK’s top gardeners, partnered by 6 leading horticultural organisations and supported by over 360 major garden centres, so we must be doing something right! All we now need is you to get involved (the most important thing) and you can do this by simply acting on, supporting and sharing our advice.

Supporting you
Our tips, facts and advice from how and why to apply sunscreen, how to check skin regularly, and what to look out for, is for everyone who loves the great outdoors. Our aim is to get everyone to stop and think twice about their habits, and then take action to improve them.

We are connected with over 360 major garden centres in the UK

Make a Donation

Our work is focused on raising awareness of melanoma and other forms of skin cancer, all undertaken by a small, but focused team. Today is a tough environment for all charities, especially for smaller organisations like ourselves who depend on donations to survive. All support is greatly appreciated.

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