Shropshire

David Austin Roses takes Chelsea gold

The Queen Anne Rose
Image caption The Queen Anne Rose is named after the founder of Royal Ascot racecourse

Shropshire's David Austin Roses has picked up its 16th gold at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show.

The Albrighton-based business won the award for its rose garden exhibit in the Great Pavilion.

The display features five new varieties of rose, including the Queen Anne, launched to mark the 300th anniversary of Royal Ascot racecourse.

There was also success for Claire Austin Hardy Plants, which took silver-gilt for a courtyard garden display.

Based in Shawbury, and daughter of the founder of David Austin Roses, Claire Austin won the award for her exhibit featuring peonies and bearded irises.

She said the harsh winter had almost forced her to cancel her Chelsea entry.

"Over half our show stock of bearded irises were damaged by the succession of nights of heavy frosts and temperatures below -10C."

Among the other new varieties that made up David Austin's award-winning garden is a rose named William and Catherine, in celebration of the royal wedding.

There was also a Silver Grenfell award for Shrewsbury Flower Club in the floral arrangement category.

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