Shipston celebrates its wool heritage

Shipston celebrates its wool heritage

Picture by Chris Wright.

Geraldine Ramskill with a young wool fair-goer. Picture by Chris Wright.

Shipston Mayor Philip Vial and TV historian Bryan McNerney, with the finished Shipston tapestry. Picture by Chris Wright.

Picture by Chris Wright.

First published in News
Last updated

SHIPSTON celebrated its woollen heritage at the weekend when the popular Wool Fair returned to the town.

Visitors enjoyed stalls selling all things sheep and wool related along with music from the Concert Brass Band and a large selection of live bands and new musicians on stage throughout the day.

This year's event held on bank holiday Monday saw 20 different breeds of sheep in their pens - a record number for the fair - including a Leicester Longwool ewe with four lambs and a Wiltshire Horn which does not need shearing.

BBC presenter Sue Cook opened the event while TV Historian Bryan McNerney, officially unveiled the finished Shipston tapestry which was made to commemorate theQueen's Diamond Jubilee and took 200 people 3,000 hours to make.

He also opened the Shipston Heritage Centre in the post office, where there are displays of sheep shearing equipment and wool and information on Shipston's wool history and will be open until the end of September.

For the first time this year, there was a show ring where people could see and hear about the different breeds and there was live shearing demonstrations and competitions.

Bob Armstrong, who was in charge of the livestock at the event, said: "We had a really good day and we know that because we had such favourable feedback.

"We want the wool fair to be on theme we've had for the last six years, which is linking Shipston to its historic background and central to that is sheep and wool."

He also thanked to the Stratford Guild of Spinners, Weavers and Dyers who were instrumental in giving skilled advice and guidance to the volunteer weavers for the Shipston tapestry and Mike Ashley, curator of Shipston Museum, who helped set up the heritage centre.

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