Holywell, FlintshireMy mother wanted to name me Katherine Elizabeth and call me Katie Beth. That would have been OK - I could see myself as a Katie. My dad, bless him, had other plans. He decided I was a Wendy, and, because he thought it was a nickname for something, came up with Winifred. So, tiny baby girl, in the late 60s, named Winifred. Wendy was unusual enough in California growing up, despite the Beach Boys. There was only one year at school that there was another Wendy in my class (or in the whole school in fact) and she was Chinese (go figure). The only other Winifreds I ran across were in obituaries - elderly Victorian-born ladies going to their eternal rest.
Thanks to baby naming books I've always known I was named after an obscure Welsh saint, but it wasn't until I was in college in England that I learned her story and that her shrine is a small spring, in a tiny town in North Wales. It was in fact due to the Ellis Peters' "Brother Cadfael" books that I became not only resigned to my name, but actually rather fond of it, and have wanted since then to visit Holywell in Wales.
According to legend, St Winifred (or Winefride or Gwenfrewi) was a beautiful, 7th century Welshwoman, who became the object of lust for a Welsh prince named Caradog who, when she rejected his advances and fled from him, cut her head off on the steps of the church, to which she had run for sanctuary. Her uncle, the abbot St Beuno cursed Caradog (who dropped down dead), replaced Winifred's head on her neck and instructed all gathered there to pray for her restoration. Miraculously she came back to life and where her head had fallen sprang up a well of clear water.
Trefriw Woollen Mills, Conwy ValleyDavid is pretty good about traipsing along with me when I want to stop at potteries, yarn stores, antique shops, etc. On the road to Conwy is a hydro-electric woolen mill/museum I had to stop at, once powered by water wheel, and now by water turbines dating from the 1930s and 40s.
The Weaver's Garden outside has specimen plants which provide fibres, natural dyes, textile tools, soaps, and moth repellents.
The spinning machines weren't working due to lack of staff that day, but there was plenty of evidence that spinning was done there.
There were also displays of historic fabrics and patterns - these were from the 60s and 70s.
The shop in the front of the mill is very large with a great selection of items, including cloth, rugs, blankets and throws woven right there in the mill. I wanted to buy a bedspread but didn't like the colours that were available so I made due with a grey and pink throw, and some purple wool cloth, from which to make David a waistcoat.