We are a tiny team of two co-founders – Director Kate Wigley and Patron Mary Schoeser – who work on a volunteer basis. As often as possible we offer recompense to other professionals who provide a varied range of educational events and practical courses. We are always looking for opportunities to collaborate with others who are equally engaged with textiles and looking to expand their creative audience.
Our growing private collection of textiles, paper designs, ledgers, historical dress and accessories spans over 400 years, dating from the mid-sixteenth century to today. We hold the Keith H. Robson Collection and the Marianne Straub Teaching Collection.These objects support our workshops, events and study days, and are also available by appointment for individuals, as well as for commercial research.
With a library of some 5,000 publications and project documents, our resources include notes and cuttings concerning historic house projects, archival consultancy and publications by Mary Schoeser. We aim to offer varied and comprehensive research and study opportunities for individuals or as part of our study days. Photocopying (5 pence per page) and scanning facilities are available. Access is by appointment.
We have a small workroom with tables that can comfortably fit 12 people working. The room space without the tables can seat approximately 18 people and benefits from good lighting, a SMART Board, toilet and tea making facilities.
We rent the space by half or full day and welcome all enquiries.
Parking is in the local town car park, a 3 minute walk away.
Unfortunately there is no disabled access due to the school’s location.
Please contact us using the booking enquiry form below, we look forward to hearing from you.
Mary Schoeser is an internationally respected textile and wallpaper historian who has published and curated widely. She has collaborated with many museums over her 40 year career, including the Fashion Textile Museum, London; the V&A – where she is an Honorary Senior Research Fellow – and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. As an historic textiles advisor she has worked with English Heritage, the National Trust and private house owners, and as a consultant archivist, with organisations such as Laura Ashley, Sanderson and the John Lewis Partnership.
“My life-long interest in design and textiles has been sustained by access to a wonderfully diverse range of people and things. These range from the most creative of textile designers and artists to the fascinating sample books and other records to be found within companies and archives across the UK and elsewhere.
Because much that I’ve learned has been through the generosity of others, the School for me is an opportunity to return these favours by sharing the insights I’ve gathered over the years.
I’ve been lucky enough to apply my knowledge as a writer, broadcaster, and consultant archivist and historic interiors advisor. So – with the input of invited speakers, workshop leaders and Director, Kate Wigley FRSA, our events reflect this breadth of activity. My goal is to share, to stimulate and, occasionally, to surprise!”
Banner image: English handwoven silk cut- and uncut velvet c.1880.
All images unless otherwise attributed are courtesy of and copyright the School of Textiles.