Award-winning Shropshire rose breeder David Austin dies, aged 92

World renowned Shropshire rose breeder and writer David Austin has died aged 92.

David Austin, of David Austin Roses, in one of his greenhouses in Albrighton
David Austin, of David Austin Roses, in one of his greenhouses in Albrighton

Mr Austin, who founded David Austin Roses, in Albrighton, died yesterday at his home in Shropshire.

David Austin Junior, son and managing director of the company for the last 25 years said: “My Father – or Mr A as he was affectionately known within the wider Austin family – was a remarkable man.

"His love for the art of rose breeding was truly inspiring – he loved nothing more than seeing the pleasure that his roses gave to others.

"His presence will be sorely missed within the global family company that he created. But the passion he instilled will continue and we will hold true to my father’s vision when he founded the company almost 50 years ago."

The company said although it would be a difficult time for the family, the business would continue as usual.

"We will continue to honour Mr Austin Snr’s memory with vigour and passion in all that we do and in the plants that we love," they said.

Focus

"Our success is very much built on our family's values and ethics and we have no plans to change this."

They said in time a special rose could be bred in his name.

"Our focus remains the pursuit of continually creating a better rose," they said.

"It is difficult to contemplate a rose that justifies Mr Austin Snr’s name as this would suggest that his ambition had been reached. It is, however, something we would very much like to do in time."

The company posted the news of Mr Austin's death on Twitter and Facebook, writing: "We are sad to announce the passing of David Austin Snr on Tuesday.

"He died peacefully aged 92 at his home in Shropshire surrounded by family."

Hundreds of people have paid tribute to Mr Austin online. Among them was Wrekin MP Mark Pritchard, who tweeted: "Very sorry to hear of the death of David Austin Snr - founder of Shropshire based David Austin Roses. David was a gracious, warm & charming man and a walking encyclopaedia on all things gardens. He leaves a huge and lasting horticultural and global legacy. RIP....."

Anybody interested in sending condolences or memories to the family can email rememberingmra@davidaustinroses.com

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