Dame Judi Dench’s tears as she receives Sycamore Gap tree seedling at Chelsea Flower Show – with actress giving it a very fitting name


Dame Judi Dench shed a tear yesterday after being presented with a sapling from the famous Sycamore Gap tree.

The centuries-old landmark, which is located next to Hadrian's Wall, was demolished by vandals last year.

At the Chelsea Flower Show yesterday, the veteran actress wiped her eyes as she received the sapling from seven-year-old Charlotte Crowe from Henshaw CE Primary School in Northumberland.

Regarding the seedling, she said: “I will name him Antoninus, the adopted son of Emperor Hadrian.”

The National Trust said Dame Judy was “passionate about trees” and was “deeply concerned by news of the Sycamore Gap tree being felled”.

Dame Judi Dench shed a tear yesterday after receiving a sapling of the famous Sycamore Gap tree from seven-year-old Charlotte Crowe from Henshaw CE Primary School in Northumberland.

At the Chelsea Flower Show yesterday, the veteran actress said about the sapling:

At the Chelsea Flower Show yesterday, the veteran actress said of the sapling: “I will name him Antoninus, the adopted son of Emperor Hadrian.”

The centuries-old landmark, which is located next to Hadrian's Wall, was demolished by vandals on September 28 last year.

The centuries-old landmark, which is located next to Hadrian's Wall, was demolished by vandals on September 28 last year.

The seedlings – grown from seeds taken from the tree felled last September – will be planted in the Octavia Hill Garden at the fair, commemorating the founder of the National Trust.

It will then join other seedlings to continue growing at the Trust's National Conservation Center in Devon.

The King also appeared at the exhibition, where schoolchildren dubbed him the 'Compost King' in honor of his environmental work.

Meanwhile, other famous faces in the gallery include Lady Amelia and Lady Eliza Spencer, Princess Diana's twin nieces, 31, who grew up in South Africa. Bake Off stars were also in attendance, including Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith.

This world-famous spectacle – which has been running for 111 years – saw old and new battle it out yesterday in the competition for the coveted gold medals, as well as the Best in Show award.

These included a modern garden featuring futuristic metal pipes, and

Traditional tastes were catered for by a garden designed by landscape architect Robert Myers for St James's Church, Piccadilly, designed by Christopher Wren and consecrated in 1684.

The process of recreating the church walls in the exhibition required hand-painting each brick to recreate the look of the central London building. “We wanted to create the atmosphere of a church in Chelsea Gardens, and the best way we could do that was with the church backdrop, and the famous Wren Window,” Mr Myers said.

The King looked happy to be back at work today as he visited a garden designed by children at the Chelsea Flower Show today

The King looked happy to be back at work today as he visited a garden designed by children at the Chelsea Flower Show today

Lady Amelia Windsor looked very summery on Monday when she made her debut at the Chelsea Flower Show

Lady Amelia Windsor looked very summery on Monday when she made her debut at the Chelsea Flower Show

Lady Amelia Spencer and Lady Eliza Spencer (right) made elegant appearances

Lady Amelia Spencer and Lady Eliza Spencer (right) made elegant appearances

Edgar-Jones daisy brought A-list glamor to the Chelsea Flower Show at the Royal Infirmary on Monday afternoon during a VIP and press preview day

Edgar-Jones daisy brought A-list glamor to the Chelsea Flower Show at the Royal Infirmary on Monday afternoon during a VIP and press preview day

This year at the Chelsea Flower Show, all the large gardens underwent a process

This year at the Chelsea Flower Show, all of the large gardens underwent a 'green audit' as part of efforts to reduce the event's environmental footprint.

The sycamore tree was cut down in the middle of the night and fell on the other side of the ancient Roman wall

The sycamore tree was cut down in the middle of the night and fell on the other side of the ancient Roman wall

The National Trust has left a framed sign next to the fenced stump that says:

The National Trust has left a framed sign next to the fenced stump that says: “This tree stump is still alive.” If we leave it alone, it may cause new growth, please respect the barrier.

Through a technique called clonal propagation, it may be possible to save the missed sycamore tree, allowing it to live into the distant future

Through a technique called clonal propagation, it may be possible to save the missed sycamore tree, allowing it to live into the distant future

Meanwhile, the garden created by designer Tom Massey for the charity WaterAid, which features rusted, whirlpool-like nozzles, represents the gallery's modernist aesthetic.

“They represent water flowing through the plug hole,” Mr. Massey said of the nozzles.

He added that the aim of the show was to make people aware of the need to reduce water use, but also in countries like India where changing weather conditions mean fresh drinking water is becoming more scarce.

Saving water is the theme of the Chelsea Flower Show, which will welcome 151,000 visitors this week before concluding on Saturday.

Environment Minister Rebecca Pow said government buildings must make better use of rainwater, including “using it to flush toilets”.

“Some departments have done a very good job of reducing their water use, and this is exactly the thing they should be looking at,” she told the Daily Mail.

Meanwhile, one of the gardens that attracted attention yesterday was the Glasshouse Effect Garden, a re-creation of the glasshouse at HMP East Sutton in Kent, part of a project to train female prisoners in gardening skills.



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