Tributes today been paid to the wife of world famous Shropshire rose grower David Austin who has died aged 72.Pat Austin, one of Albrighton's best known residents and a talented sculptress and painter, died at the couple's home on Bowling Green Lane in Albrighton on Friday.
She had been suffering from heart problems. Her work was displayed at the Chelsea Flower Show and can be seen in the family's gardens as well as in the village.
Her son, Jim, paid tribute on behalf of her husband David, children David and Claire and her eight grandchildren, saying she would be "sadly missed".
David Austin Roses has released nearly 200 English roses, many named after British landmarks, writers and historical events. One, a pale coppery yellow rose, was named after Mrs Austin.
She was instrumental in helping her husband set up the rose breeding business in 1969.
Since then it has become well known across the world and Mr Austin, 82, is considered one of the greatest contemporary breeders.
He received an OBE for services to horticulture from the Prince of Wales last month. Mrs Austin's real passion was sculpting and she received many private and public commissions for her work, including a statue which is outside Albrighton Medical Centre.
She was loved by the 100 staff employed at the family business and many of the residents of Albrighton.
Jim Austin said: "She was incredibly supportive to her husband and family and put her sculpting second to us all. She was very much loved and will be sadly missed by us all. She was a great talker and also had a real ability to listen, which is why I think she knew so many people."
He described his mum as an avid reader and gardener who was a "staunch supporter of the countryside".
Mrs Austin was born in Wolverhampton in January 1935 and educated at Wolverhampton High School. Her father Leonard Braithwaite ran a book-binding business.
She married Mr Austin in 1956. The devoted couple opened the gates to their private garden on a number of occasions, raising many thousands of pounds for good causes.
The funeral service and interment will take place at noon on December 29 at St Mary Magdalene Church in Albrighton.
All friends are welcome. Inquiries through John Williams Funeral Services on (01952) 460 669.