One million new vines to be planted in British sparkling wine boom

Tom Powell
New awards for the UK's best wines have been launched: Shutterstock / grafvision

British wine producers are set to plant one million vines this year as the rapid growth of the industry in the UK continues.

The new vines are expecting to yield an extra two million bottles of wine – mainly sparkling – worth an estimated £50 million.

The number of acres planted with grapevines in England and Wales has grown by 135 per cent in the last decade, according to the English Wine Producers trade body.

There are now around 500 vineyards in total, covering more than 5,000 acres.

To celebrate the success of the industry, the UK Wine awards are being launched to crown the very best products.

The awards will be led by experts including Oz Clarke, Susie Barrie, from the BBC’s Saturday kitchen, and wine writer Hamish Anderson.

English and Welsh wines will be blind-tasted over two days before the wines are announced on May 31.

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