Alan Titchmarsh plants Chawton Cottage rose

Jane Austen’s House Museum welcomed celebrity gardener Alan Titchmarsh today to plant the Chawton Cottage rose in the House’s garden. The rose was specially developed by Harkness Roses to commemorate the 70th anniversary of Jane Austen’s House Museum opening to the public and debuted at this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower Show.

After a brief introduction from Museum Director, Mary Guyatt, Mr Titchmarsh planted the Chawton Cottage rose in Jane Austen’s garden by the Bakehouse wall – with the help of the Museum’s head gardener, Celia Simpson and Philip Harkness of Harkness Roses.

The rose, described by Harkness as a ‘sensational new climbing rose’, has a light scent and an enchanting deep red eye in every delicately shaped pearl pink flower. It is the third rose Harkness Roses have developed for Jane Austen’s House Museum to mark key anniversaries. The Chawton Cottage rose follows the Jane Austen rose, unveiled in 2017 to mark the bicentenary of Austen’s death and the Pride and Prejudice rose, unveiled in 2013 to mark the 200th anniversary of the novel’s publication. Mr Titchmarsh has visited each year to plant the roses in the House’s garden.

Alan Titchmarsh said: “Jane Austen’s garden really brings her house to life for me and I am honoured to be back here planting a beautiful rose for the third time. It combines my love of gardening, Hampshire and Jane Austen and I look forward to see the Chawton Cottage Rose blooming in visits to the House for years to come.”

Harkness Roses are generously donating a percentage of their proceeds to help support the Museum’s fundraising appeal to restore and protect Jane Austen’s precious home. The Chawton Cottage rose will be available for sale via Harkness Roses.