British Wool Week 2016

Last week was British Wool Week.

Here at Overbury we have a large flock of around 1,200 sheep.  Every February and September Reg the Shepherd, together with a team of sheep shearers, give the whole flock a good trim.  Shearing the sheep’s wool helps keeps our flock healthy and it has the benefit of cooling them down as well as ensuring any dirt and parasites, which can live in the wool, don’t turn into an infection or disease.

So what happens to all that wool?

It is collected by local farmer who spends most of the summer collecting wool from farms in the Cotswolds.

He takes it to the Droitwich collection centre to be weighed.  We usually have around 2,500 kg of wool.  The wool is then then sent down to Brecon, one of the main depots for the British Wool Marketing Board to be graded to determine the quality.  We get paid by the British Wool Marketing Board based on the quality and quantity.

Some of our wool is used for textiles such as socks, jumpers and woolly hats and the rest is used in carpets.

We only have 3 black sheep on the farm at the moment.  Did you know that black wool can be less valuable than white wool commercially?  However, some wool spinners will pay more for black wool to produce a naturally coloured garment.

To show our support for our sheep farming, the girls in the Overbury Estate Office donned our wool last week.  Here we are with Reg the Shepherd and a few of his rams (the boys) in the background!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Even Mavis got into the spirit!

How can you help to keep our flock healthy?  If you walk your dog in and around Bredon Hill, please ensure that you always pick up after your dog.  Dog fouling contains dog tape worm which seriously harms sheep.  There are notices around the farm with more information. 

Also, no matter how well behaved your dog is, it may chase and attack sheep.  Dogs walked in a field of livestock must be kept on a lead at all times.

Keep up to date with what we are doing around the farm on Instagram or Twitter.