ANDREW Ingram is celebrating after winning a contest to provide a Christmas Tree for Downing Street.

The Watlington Christmas tree grower came top out of more than 100 producers to scoop the accolade for the second time.

He will provide a tree to go outside the door of Number 10 after being selected by the British Christmas Tree Growers’ Association.

It is the first time a pine has won the Champion Christmas Tree Grower 2013 prize, though he will provide a different tree for the Prime Minister’s home.

This Christmas marks the 42nd year Mr Ingram has been providing festive foliage from The Tree Barn, Greenfield Farm, Christmas Common.

The land – which his family has farmed since 1945 –- is home to 150,000 trees.

The winning 6ft lodgepole pine was nurtured over more than six years after arriving from Europe at just eight inches.

Mr Ingram will now pick a tree to be delivered to the Downing Street in the first week of December.

The 65-year-old – who also won in 2011 – said: “I am delighted, we didn’t expect we would win a second time.

“Pine has never won the competition before, it was a very beautiful one.

“We hoped to win the pine section but never thought for a moment the pine would beat the spruce or firs.”

He said: “There is an art to it. The more work you put into growing them, the better they become.”

Pruning and using the right fertiliser at the right time are vital skills to creating the perfect tree, he said.

Judges scored trees on foliage, colour, shape and “marketability”.

Association secretary Harry Brightwell said: “Our tree competition is always popular with our members and this year was no different, with more than 100 entries.

“The standard of the entries this year was extremely high but Andrew presented a fabulous pine tree that met the judging criteria perfectly.

“We’re looking forward to seeing him deliver a tree to Downing Street to bring some festive spirit to all those who visit Number 10.”