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To mark the start of Wool Week, we have a guest article from Sarah, owner of Little Beau Sheep. A finalist in the Best Rural Start Up category in the North, Sarah  is the proud producer of a hand-made laundry and body care range. Packed with the power of natural British wool and soothing lanolin, the Little Beau Sheep collection offers an eco-friendly take on everyday cleaning tasks. This year Wool Week runs from 8th to 21st October – an extended programme to celebrate its ninth anniversary.

Have you heard about Wool Week? For anyone who’s a fan of this truly fabulous fabric it’s a great opportunity to celebrate wool in all its wonderful forms…

Organised and run by the Campaign for Real Wool – whose patron is HRH the Prince of Wales no less – Wool Week brings together a whole host of wool aficionados on an extended bill of events and activities ‘designed to educate, inspire and promote the benefits of wool’. What’s not to love?

Discover the wonders of Wool Week 2018

 

Now in its ninth year, Wool Week 2018 takes place between October 8th to 21st. (I know, that’s more like Fleece Fortnight but hey, I’m not arguing with his highness.) Previously Wool Week has featured collaborations between John Lewis, knitters, crocheters and crafters as well as in-store events with big fashion brands such as Vivienne Westwood. There was even knit-fest at Loch Ness – wow!

 

Get in on the act with Little Beau Sheep 

 

Never one to miss out on a woolly get-together, I thought I’d get Little Beau Sheep in on the act this year. At the same time, I thought it would be even better if I could also do my bit for the charity I support, the Rare Breed Survival Trust. They do an amazing job monitoring, protecting and promoting the unique diversity amongst the UK’s heritage breeds, even saving some from extinction.

 

Anyone for limited edition Hebridean-wool dryer balls?

 

So, as a Little Beau Sheep Wool Week Special, I’ll be launching a limited edition set of Hebridean Sheep Laundry Balls.

There are lots of reasons to love a Hebridean. Small, black and especially pretty, they also quite often grow four horns or more, which makes them all the more adorable in my book.

These beautiful shady sheep are classed as a Category 6 Native Breed, which means they meet all the society’s proper pedigree criteria. They’re the real deal alright.

 

Five fab Hebridean sheep facts…

1.  Little toughies, Hebrideans will happily stay out on the hillside all winter long.
2.  These amazing sheep can actually grow a set of more than four horns!
3.  Trials have shown that these mini marvels are more profitable per hector for farmers than your common or garden sheep.
4.  Hebrideans have no wool on their face or legs – something they have in common with most people.
5.  A rain shedding top-layer means they can get rid of water in two shakes of a lamb’s tail.

 

Meet the sheep your wool comes from 

 

Even better, if you’re lucky enough to get your hands on a set of my limited-edition tumble tamers, you’ll know exactly which sheep has donated the wool you’re using. That’s right, the wool in these dryer balls will come from either Easter, Eldred, Eric, Ernie or Elf. Meet the team…

Easter & Eldred

Born on Easter morn, these twin lambs were rejected by their mum as she had problems with her udder. Nurse Nina stepped in and bottle-fed the tiny twosome every couple of hours. Never leaving her side, the adorable duo were transported around the farm in a shopping bag, which they loved! Both are now the proud owners of four horns apiece.

Eric & Ernie

Another pair of twins, Eric and Ernie are a delightful double act. Ernie has four horns and Eric two. But there’s something else numerically noteworthy about Ernie: he has three legs. After an accident involving a wheel barrow when just three weeks old, he now has more horns than legs. The good news is he’s a happy and healthy heb!

Elf

This cheeky bundle of black wool is Elf. Born a premature triplet, she had to be bottle fed as her mum didn’t have enough milk for Elf and her one surviving sibling. The lambs were nursed in the pen so they didn’t lose the bond with mum. And just like mum – the appropriately named Carpet – Elf has an especially luxuriant fleece

Nina: the shepherdess

“It’s great to work with Sarah and Little Beau Sheep in support of the Rare Breed Survival Trust. I’m so proud the limited edition Hebridean dryer balls are from the Crowkeld flock, which I have the great honour of looking after. Anyone who buys the Heb Balls is more than welcome to come meet the sheep who supplied the wool!”

They’re all Hebridean sheep I know personally from nearby Crowkeld Rare Breed Smallholding. And just for Wool Week, they’ve agreed to release some fleece especially for Little Beau Sheep customers.

 

Come say hello to the flock

 

Nina who runs Crowkeld really works wonders with the livestock there and is more than happy for anyone who buys these limited-edition packs to come and meet this amazing flock of hardy hebs. If you can’t make in person, why not take a look at the Crowkeld farm store where you can buy raw fleece (perfect for felting) or super soft Hebridean wool yarn.

People can stay there too!

 

It’s not just sheep that are catered for at Crowkeld. With the arrival of six hand-made holiday log cabins, humans can soon get to enjoy life down on this particular farm. They also have moorings on the nearby Leeds Liverpool canal as well as a farm shop packed with homemade goodies. If you’re ever up in North Yorkshire – or you’re looking for somewhere to stay in the area – you can be sure of a warm welcome. Who knows, I might bump into you whilst you’re there : )

 

£5 from every order goes to the Rare Breed Society 

 

To help support the type of work that goes on at Crowkeld, I’ll donate £5 from each purchase of my Wool-Week-limited-edition-named-sheep-Hebridean-100% pure-all wool-dryer-balls to the Rare Breed Survival Trust.

Which means you can shop safe in the knowledge you’re helping out a really important cause. And you’ll also have some very special mini-Hebrideans all of your own to help out come laundry day.

Happy Wool Week to one and all! 

 

Sarah Turner runs Little Beau Sheep. From the heart of the North Yorkshire Dales, she creates a range of laundry and body care goodies that celebrate the wonders of wool and lanolin in all their gorgeous natural glory. Find out what it’s all about at littlebeausheep.com

If you are interested in writing a guest blog for the Rural Business Awards, please email amy@ruralbusinessawards.co.uk for more information.

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