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The History of Sailcloth Manufacture (IA Section)

Thu. 27 January 2022 at 2:30 pm

To be held by Zoom video conferencing.

A talk by Richard Sims, full title ‘Coker Canvas: The History of Sailcloth in the Somerset/Dorset Area’.

The talk will discuss the preparation of flax, and hemp and the organisation of the industry in pre-factory days using the history of West Chinnock, and Poleswell in Crewkerne. Richard will review the history of sailcloth manufacture, the rise of Scottish sailcloth at the expense of the local product, associated with the adoption of “Coker Canvas” as the standard made in Scotland. He will describe twine production and the restoration of Dawes Twine Works.

Richard is from Crewkerne. After retiring from teaching in West Dorset, he published his researches on the rope, net and twine industry of Bridport, and, separately, on the flax and hemp industries of Bridport and West Bay. More recently, he has studied the origin of the Coker canvas industry in villages on the Somerset/Dorset border. In addition to his books, Richard has appeared repeatedly as guest authority on these subjects on BBC television, ITV, and BBC Radio 4.

Important notes

To join this meeting please contact the Organiser (details below). You will in due course be sent instructions on how to log in etc. Please don’t worry if you are not familiar with the Zoom software. It is quite straightforward to use and does not involve any expense. There is also the ability to join the meeting by phone. You will be able to log in a few minutes before the start of the lecture.

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Thu. 27 January 2022
2:30 pm
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Industrial Archaeology Section (Mike Stannard)


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