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Grapes could be grown in Valentines Park after Hampton Court Palace gifts Ilford cutting of 'largest grapevine in the world'

PUBLISHED: 15:00 03 May 2019

Ian Tocher, Garden Nursery Manager at Hampton Court Palace presenting a cutting of the Great Vine to artist Cinzia Castellano from Valentines Mansion.

Ian Tocher, Garden Nursery Manager at Hampton Court Palace presenting a cutting of the Great Vine to artist Cinzia Castellano from Valentines Mansion.

Archant

A piece of the largest grapevine in the world has come to Ilford.

Ian Tocher, Garden Nursery Manager at Hampton Court Palace presenting a cutting of the Great Vine to artist Cinzia Castellano from Valentines Mansion.Ian Tocher, Garden Nursery Manager at Hampton Court Palace presenting a cutting of the Great Vine to artist Cinzia Castellano from Valentines Mansion.

A cutting of the 250-year-old iconic Great Vine of Hampton Court Palace - which produces an average of 272kg of black dessert grapes a year and measures 36.5 meters at its longest point - has been rehomed in Redbridge.

Not many people know that the iconic royal plant was originally grown from a Black Hamburg Vine from Ilford's very own Valentines Park, in Emerson Road.

To mark 10 years of the mansion being open to the public, the great vine, or at least a piece of it, has returned home to Redbridge.

Valentines Mansion Studio Artist Cinzia Castellano, designed a special vase to house the cutting which will go on display during the estate's annual summer exhibition.

Ian Tocher, Garden Nursery Manager at Hampton Court Palace presenting a cutting of the Great Vine to artist Cinzia Castellano from Valentines Mansion.Ian Tocher, Garden Nursery Manager at Hampton Court Palace presenting a cutting of the Great Vine to artist Cinzia Castellano from Valentines Mansion.

She said: “While reading about the Hampton Court Vine, I found that the initial cutting was taken from Valentines Mansion.

“This fascinated me and I wanted to create a vase which would chromatically represent the plant itself, whilst at the same time being an abstraction of the mansion with its grand portico and windows.”

A Valentines Mansion spokeswoman said the end result is an impressive three-part structural vase - the “perfect home for the new cutting”.

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“The brown vase, with its rough and unclean finish, is masked by two glossy panels,” she said.

“Coincidently, the structure of the vase, is also symbolic of another part of the mansion's history – it's links with The East India Company (EIC).

“Three of the Mansion's previous owners were involved in the EIC, and it was during the time of Charles Raymond, a retired ship's captain, who lavished his fortunes on the house and gardens, that the original cutting was presented to Capability Brown.”

The cutting was presented back to the mansion by a Royal Palaces representative at a private event.

Ian Tocher, nursery and plant production manager at Hampton Court released a statement ahead of the ceremony.

“I'm looking forward to bringing our vine plant, propagated from our Great Vine, to Valentine's Mansion & Gardens and thrilled that a special vessel has been made for it.

“It's great to continue the historical links with the gardens and park, where our famous Great Vine plant originated as a cutting.”

The vase and plant will be on display at Valentines Mansion during August.

For more information contact 02087088100.

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