Shropshire Star

David Austin Roses names Chelsea Flower Show entry after iconic figure – find out who

A leading name in the world of ceramics has said she is 'delighted' to have had a rose named after her by a Shropshire grower.

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David Austin Roses in Albrighton has named its entry to this year's Chelsea Flower Show after iconic British potter Emma Bridgewater.

Emma set up her eponymous ceramics firm in the heart of the Potteries in Stoke on Trent in 1985.

Emma smelling the roses

The rose grower said the 'beguiling pink English shrub rose', revealed ahead of the RHS show on Tuesday, opens up to a 'crescendo of colours ranging from apricot and coral to mauve and lilac', nodding to the painterly nature of Emma Bridgewater’s collectible pottery.

David Austin Roses also say the eponymous Emma Bridgewater English Shrub rose celebrates the union of two heritage British brands, with a flower that can grow and thrive in gardens but also last forever indoors on the conresponding hand-painted Emma Bridgewater mug.

The Emma Bridgewater Rose

It follows an earlier collaboration in January of this year where the two co-designed a charitable mug depicting the golden yellow David Austin Bring Me Sunshine rose to raise money for the National Garden Scheme, where a £5 donation for every mug sold continues to be donated to charity.

In addition to the new Emma Bridgewater rose, David Austin is also launching a new gift box in which recipients will enjoy a voucher for the rose, an Emma Bridgewater milk bottle vase for displaying a cut stem or two and a matching tea towel, which can also be purchased via the David Austin website.

David JC Austin said: “Emma Bridgewater’s works are amongst the most collectable of our time, so it feels fitting to have created an English rose of such endless appeal in her honour.

“In the tradition of our English roses, we have meticulously bred, tested, and trialled the Emma Bridgewater variety over 12 years to ensure it is both beautiful and born to endure.

The new rose

“Admiring the rose in full bloom at this year’s Chelsea Flower Show will be a very special moment, just as it was for me to visit the Emma Bridgewater factory in Stoke-on-Trent and see our collaborative mug being crafted.”

Emma Bridgewater said the rose was 'wonderful'.

David and Emma surrounded by a sea of roses

She added: “I am delighted by our collaboration with David Austin Roses, a British brand with a real crossover of vision and ideas. Visiting the David Austin nursery and witnessing the rose creation process was thrilling and incredibly inspiring.

“I have been surrounded and loved David Austin Roses for as long as I remember as both my mum and granny were keen gardeners and loved them. Much like a well-loved piece of pottery, roses can be like old friends, with a personal connection for people.

“The Emma Bridgewater rose is wonderful, and not least because it is full of surprises, as it displays several distinctly different colours as the buds appear, open and then develop - giving three different hues in one rose. It has also been rewarding to take this beautiful rose and translate it into pottery with an illustrative mug as well as a range of vases made especially for displaying roses in all of their glory.”

The Royal Horticultural Society Chelsea Flower Show takes place from Tuesday, May 21 to Saturday, May 25.

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