A Wonderful Wool – and a couple other things



Wrapping up my stay here and hoping to be home soon, I want to share a few last things about these sheep and their wool.

But first, a couple maps to help you see where I am. In the second you can see the placement of the Isle of Man between Ireland and England. In the first, I can point out where I am staying – in Douglas on the east coast. We drove up to Laxey, which I will describe below, and then went around to Peel which has the castle and was the capital of IOM and the Viking seat of power.

There is a lot of history here and I barely scratched the surface of it. Like many other areas, it was settled by Vikings. They have a wonderful museum here, where our conference was held. I spent a few minutes going through it but not nearly enough to do it justice.




But back to wool. We spent an afternoon in Laxey. It is the site of Laxey Woolen Mills and we heard a great talk about its history by the current owner, John Wood. The only commercial mill left on the island it was founded in 1881 and has had a very interesting history. Here they weave Pure Manx Loaghtan and blends into travel rugs, scarves, tweeds and for bags – all weaving done on the two pedal looms here.





The upper level has a wonderful exhibition space which houses a variety of exhibits. The one there currently was scheduled to coincide with our conference.


Here are some of the creations of local artists, celebrating this magnificent sheep breed and the versatility of its wool.







Here is one of the looms – with mill dog “Rick”.


All in all, a very good conference with a lot of interesting talks and field trips. What a privilege to meet such an interesting breed and the people who care so passionately about its survival.


[thanks again to Nathalie Ketterle for another really good ram photo!]

Published in: on October 15, 2017 at 9:06 pm  Comments (1)  

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