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Published: 10 September 2012

By Andy Ross

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The buzz that has been London this summer continues and I have been down for a few days to go to some art openings and see some shows, as well as to buy some new looms. We have four new Ashford eight shaft looms coming to Yell; thanks to the Handweavers' Studio, and to Awards for All for the money for these. The looms are to be used for our education programmes and we are looking forward to them arriving.

London is always an exciting place. This trip, so far, we have been to see the Beaton exhibition at the Imperial War Museum, where I learned much more about the man behind those famous images and the work he did in theatre and costume, the beautiful renovation of the Cutty Sark where the figureheads that adorned the old ships have been beautifully displayed as paying homage to the ship, and the Painted Hall and Wren Chapel. We have also spent time in the Tate (both of them), and seen Louise Tucker, our weaver in residence last year, at her final show from Chelsea. South Africa featured at the South Bank Centre where there was a craft display that filled the Queen Elizabeth Hall's foyer with colour, light and magic from the Rainbow Nation, and we spent time being amazed by the British Library's show, Writing Britain. I have now read and heard one of my favourite poems, William Blake's London at that show, and discovered a new-to-me poem which is always exciting and wonderful.

In addition, we have been to the new Member's Room at the British Museum where I could spend my life looking at Shakespeare, American gardens, Chinese discus throwers and Maori weaving, and this week Beauty is the first test opens.

I shall need a holiday when I get back...

Some photographs of the Cutty Sark, (the name means a short shirt), wool bales on board the ship, a flag and beautiful dress in the Maritime Museum, and the South African craft display at the South Bank.