Thursday, 10 October 2013

ABOVE: Knitting group at St James' Church hall. LEFT: Mrs Brenda Baldwin with some of the many dolls she has knitted as a member of a group that meets at the Methodist Church. A knitting revival is under way in Silsden. Three groups meet regularly for members to share projects and patterns and, most of all, to enjoy each other's company while pursuing an absorbing and useful craft. Members range from young mums to veterans in their 80s who have been knitting since their school days. Meeting fortnightly on Saturday afternoons, the group at St James' is the longest-established and biggest of the three with a core of 28 knitters. Another group meets each Wednesday morning at the Methodist Church and the Punch Bowl Inn hosts a weekly gathering on Thursday evenings. Nationally, groups and school clubs are flourishing and an estimated 4 million women and more than 400,000 men are knitting. Celebrities from Madonna to Jo Brand and Kate Moss to Hilary Swank are contributing to the upsurge. There is a National Knitting Week (October 14-20) and a UK Hand Knitting Association.
 ABOVE: The Punch Bowl group was formed a year ago after three of the mums had attended a crochet course in Cross Hills and decided to take up or return to knitting as well as doing other handicrafts.
ABOVE: Georgina Lovely's first attempt at knitting produced this hat for her two-year-old son Matthew. Georgina learnt to knit through the group that meets at the Methodist Church. BELOW: Also a member of the group, Alison Smith displays one of her many eye-catching patchwork designs.