Gazing at the Abingdon 1556-2006 quilt in the library,
I take a picture of the patch from Mason’s Wool Shop in Stert Street.
The first mention of Masons Wool Shop, in the Hooke’s Abingdon Directories, is in 1942. That must make it one of Abingdon’s longest running businesses, and older than the two Mason’s shops in Bath Street.
Mason’s wool shop has a modest front. There is a display of wool in one window and fabric in the other. Above the shop sign is a blue plaque that reads “John Alder ‘The fortunate cooper‘ of the Mitre Inn lived here when he won the lottery in 1767. He gave much of his fortune to the town.”
Stepping inside the shop you first walk through an area displaying upholstery / curtain material, together with rolls of wipe-clean table cover material. There are also lots of buttons and other crafty things. Information about John Alder, with his picture, is displayed beside curtain runners, hooks, and cord ends.
The assistants serve from a large wooden counter that is large enough to measure and cut material.
But what is most unexpected is the tardis-like dimensions of the shop. It just goes on and on and on – with wool trailing away into the distance.