Shetland Wool Week 2014 Patron Announced
by Deborah Leggate -
Shetland Wool Week 2014 Patron Announced
Organisers of Shetland Wool Week have today announced Hazel Tindall as this year's guest patron of the festival, and invited local craftspeople with ideas for events to get involved in the 2014 event. This is the fifth year of Shetland Wool Week, which continues to grow in popularity, attracting a worldwide following and hundreds of visitors to Shetland every October.
In 2013, 174 people registered attendance at the event, including local participants and others travelling to Shetland to take part in workshops and events. Visitors came from throughout the UK, USA, Germany, Brazil, Australia, Canada, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands. The feedback survey identified that Wool Week visitors brought in excess of £72,000 into the Shetland economy through accommodation, transport, and purchasing from local retailers and craftspeople. This was over 100% higher than the 2012 figure and looks set to be higher this year as increasing numbers of visitors look to attend.
Hazel Tindall, who has twice held the World's Fastest Knitter title, will be Patron of 2014 Shetland Wool Week. Hazel grew up in Shetland and learned to knit before she can even remember. Her knitting has been the subject of many articles and book chapters, and her own patterns are eagerly sought by knitters all around the world. Hazel has a real passion for knitting, patterns and Shetland wool and having delivered a number of classes in past years, is an ideal Patron for Wool Week 2014. She will design a special Wool Week pattern which will be made available prior to the event. Details will be posted to the website at www.shetlandwoolweek.com later in the year.
Due to growing demand for classes and events, Shetland Wool Week 2014 has been extended slightly to take place over two weekends, from 4th to 12th October. Daily enquiries are already being received by organisers from wool enthusiasts all around the world.
As in previous years, Shetland Wool Week will offer a number of events which will include talks, demonstrations and workshops. The involvement of local craftmakers, designers, industry suppliers, tutors and retailers is key to growing the event, and in celebrating how important this industry is to Shetland's heritage. The opportunity to get involved in the 2014 programme is now being extended to anyone interested in holding an event, class or exhibition.
There are several ways to get involved:
- • Organise an event/workshop/demonstration
- • Arrange a wool themed display/exhibition in a shop or public space
- • Open a studio or workshop to visitors
- • Have a stall at the Makers Market
- • Provide leaflets or promotional materials for display in the Wool Week Hub at Shetland Museum and Archives
- • Take part in a "pop-up-shop" to be open throughout the duration of the event
Anyone who would like to be involved, or discuss ideas can contact Emma Miller at email@example.com or telephone: 01595 694688. The programme is expected to be finalised and available in mid April, so all event details must be confirmed by Friday 7th March.
Shetland Wool Week is organised by Promote Shetland, Shetland Amenity Trust and Jamieson & Smith, with input from a number of other agencies including Shetland Livestock Marketing Group, Shetland Flock Book, Shetland Arts, Shetland College and the Shetland Guild of Spinners, Weavers & Dyers. The event started in 2009 following the creation of the national "Campaign for Wool", of which His Royal Highness, Prince Charles is Patron.
Emma Miller, of Shetland Amenity Trust, said “It never ceases to amaze us how popular Wool Week is, and how keen folk are to start booking for the next one. We were already being asked for the 2014 dates at the last event and the enquiries about classes and dates for this year are getting fairly constant now. It really goes to show the massive enthusiasm that exists for Shetland wool and knitting from a global audience. This year will be bigger than ever and it looks set to continue like that for a good while to come.”