The ‘golden hoof’: The regeneration of regional wools


There is a myriad of benefits to native and rare breed sheep wool. Making better use of it in innovative products, could position it as the sustainable fibre to champion in the future as we look more inwardly for green solutions in British manufacturing. The relevance of these breeds for a more sustainable future is an issue that divides many in the farming, agricultural and manufacturing communities. This evolving body of work set out to discover the positive impact these breeds could have on both regional economy as well as wider ecology. 

The key findings showed flaws in British Wool’s homogenised sorting practices, a disconnection between farm and factory with breeders struggling to find that ‘middleman’ without huge overheads as well as outdated breed information with categories of ‘carpet’ or ‘garment’ being unsatisfactory. 

The research draws together multiple fields of study including textile manufacturing, sheep husbandry and edaphology. Confirming how, in microcosm, the textiles industry’s drive towards natural solutions could be satisfied by wool’s symbiosis with nature.

This article forms part of a wider research project which combined academic and practical textile research, highlighting the innovation and diversity of research achieved and encouraged in the School of Arts and Humanities.


The golden hoof, rare breed wool, British Wool, British Sheep Breeds, Sheep, Textiles, wool, regional regeneration

How to Cite

Knapp, L., (2022) “The ‘golden hoof’: The regeneration of regional wools”, Fields: journal of Huddersfield student research 8(1). doi:







Louisa Knapp (University of Huddersfield)





Creative Commons Attribution 4.0


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This article has been peer reviewed.

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