An Orpington boy who attempted to outgrow his great-great-grandad’s 24-inch cucumber fell short but will try again next year.

Nine-year-old Tom, from Chesfield, set out to beat his relative's show stopping effort, having heard from his Grandmother how it made the pages of the News Shopper 40 years ago.

After reaching an impressive 22-inches since planting in March, Tom decided to call it a day as the vegetable began to perish.

Tom's grandmother, Tanya Rose, 56, said: “He cut the cucumber cause it started to die and the plant couldn’t grow anymore.

“He was very glad that he was able to get close to his great-great-grandad’s prize-winner.

“He said he will use a portable green house next year so if the weather changes like it did this year he hopes he’s cucumber will still keep growing.”

News Shopper:

Tom’s great grandad, also named Tommy, presented him with a trophy to recognise his efforts.

His great-great-grandad, again named Tommy, who died aged 73, was a greengrocer and keen gardener who applied the tricks of his trade to his hobby.

The two-foot triumph grew in his garden greenhouse in Biddenden, Kent. Unfortunately the exact date is missing from the News Shopper clipping kept by the family.

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The headline read: "Tom's keeping cooler than his cucumber."

"It was a freak occurrence; then he just wanted to see how big it would get," Tanya, who lives with Toms brother Jimmy, 2, and mum Lily, added.

"I’m not sure exactly what his secret was.

"He used a tube to get to water the bottom of the roots, so maybe that."