Introducing the 'Red Flannel Collection'...

We are proud to announce the opening of our new Park Mill Woollen Manufactory, an industrially woven collection of red flannel products made here at Park Mill in our traditional Woollen Mill. We have a range of products available to purchase from this collection including; throws, cushions, blankets, shawls and more! As well drop spindle kits, balls of wool for hand knitting from our very own sheep.

Pop in and see what we have on offer!

Whats happening at the Woollen Mill?

Winter Scarf Weaving on a Rigid Heddle Loom - Saturday19th January 2019

Saori Creative Weaving - Saturday 2nd February

Minature Rug Weaving - Sunday 10th February

Drop Spindle Hand Spinning - Saturday 23rd February

Pre-booking only! Contact Ffibrau Y Gwyr to book at ffibrauygwyr@gmail.com

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Andrew Davies AM officially opens the Woollen Mill Project. The Woollen Mill project was officially opened on the 23rd of March 2007 by Andrew Davies AM with guest Edwina Hart AM.

"This project is a tribute to an industry that historically provided hundreds of jobs and will now create employment as well as leisure and tourism opportunities in the modern day. This is a great example of how European Structural Funds can make a positive difference to a region. We will build on this success during the next round of funding which is due to begin later this year."
Andrew Davies AM


"This new display features working exhibits from the former Swansea Maritime and Industrial Museum now replaced by the new National Waterfront Museum.In partnership with Swansea Museum Services and supported by the European Union's Objective One Programme through the Welsh Assembly Government, we are now able to create our own woollen mill in an existing craft display within the grounds of the Heritage Centre. It's an exciting venture."
Roy Church, GHC Trustee

Mr Church said apart from the equipment used from the old Abbey Works at Neath there was machinery from Cwmllwchwr Mill at Ammanford.

The Neath Abbey Mill was one of the last major mills in the area to close in the 1970's and was particularly important because it was one of the few mills that carried out the entire process of fabric production from fleece to fabric under one roof. Products included blankets, throws and even shawls for babies. He said that in Gower there were a number of small mills operating until the 1920's - most of them run by the Tanner family. They produced a unique Gower Blanket with a particular red weave pattern known as Minka.

At Parkmill near the water mill at the Heritage Centre a fulling mill was set-up in the 19th century. Fulling is a process of washing the cloth to encourage shrinking. In Wales these mills were called Pandy.

At one time on the Gower sheep were a major source of fleece for the local industry and many farms had facilities for washing sheep prior to shearing.

Over the last 6 years, work has been going on at the Centre to create a display which illustrates the history of the woollen industry in south-west Wales using equipment from the former Abbey Woollen Mill at Neath and shows how fleece is turned into a finished fabric.

Today there are no longer any working weaving mills in the area yet at one time there was a thriving industry employing hundreds of people. Little however, remains today of those times.

At the Gower Heritage Centre Woollen Mill we feel that is extremely important to keep these valuable techniques and skills alive today with regular demonstrations, workshops, talks and short courses suitable for all ages.

We are currently demonstrating weaving on both the industrial (Dobcross) loom as well as an 8-shaft hand loom housed in our Woollen Mill. We can weave replicas of both the 'Gower' pattern and the 'Minka' pattern into scarves, cushions, shawls and small accessories. We also hold demonstrations of carding, spinning using drop-spindles, historical examples of different drop-spindles, weaving using rigid-heddle looms, tablet (card) weaving, inkle weaving and tapestry weaving.

The Woollen Mill is open 7 days a week with free carding and spinning facilities to 'have a go',



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All imagery Gower Heritage Centre 2007.


 

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