Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Is this the future for the British woollen industry?

This is a photo of Buckfast Spinners in Devon being gutted and emptied of all it's equipment. Buckfast Spinners, owned by Axminster Carpets is set to permanently close the mill doors in December this year.    Some of the most advanced spinning and dyeing equipment in Europe has been ripped out and shipped overseas to the competitors in Turkey and Belguim.

What a sad sight to witness a stagnant shell of a mill, eerily hushed forever. The Dartmoor wind rushes through the building, stirring the clumps of oily wool hanging from the carding machine. Only last year did the mill produce the yarn to make the carpet for the ballroom in Buckingham Palace in honour of the Royal Wedding. Travellers on the Orient Express pressed the Buckfast yarns under their feet.

How will Axminster Carpets ever hope to survive if their local, life long yarn suppliers haven't? Who will ship yarn to order in 24 hours at the highest quality? Who will match colour for colour in a day? Why wasn't the support there for Buckfast Spinners before it was too late?