Bank holiday sheep meet and greet in Axminster

east devon

Axminster resident Aurelia Easton stroking one of the Portland lambs - Credit: Nigel Sadler.

Axminster Heritage centre opened its doors for its temporary exhibition, and local farmer Carol Miltenburg bought 11 sheep for visitors to meet.

On Saturday (April 16), visitors could ask questions about the hand shearing, the sheep breed and how the wool was processed after being collected.

They were then able to pet the sheep, feed them and give a lamb a cuddle before some of the sheep were hand-sheared by Carol for the crowd to see.

east devon

Fred Sadler cuddling a lamb, the lamb sniffed his face. - Credit: Nigel Sadler.

The summer exhibition Spinning a Yarn: The Story of Axminster and Sheep hopes to show the people of Axminster how sheep and wool have played their part in the development of the town and the surrounding areas since the Iron Age. 

Local wool has also been used at Axminster Carpets since they started production in 1755 and even today is still making carpets for royal households, stately homes and luxury hotels around the world.

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Emily Spencer-Godfrey cuddling a lamb. - Credit: Nigel Sadler.

Nigel Sadler, of Axminster Heritage Centre, said: "The sheep are the first part of a very active summer season at the Axminster Heritage Centre, mostly linked to our temporary exhibition.

"It proved to be a great day for all the visitors, especially the families and all visitors left with a smile on their faces and for some an experience, they had never had before or expected."

A range of workshops, activities and talks will be accompanying the exhibition and all will be announced on the website (, on Facebook and in the members' newsletter throughout the summer.

Spinning a Yarn, the story of Axminster and sheep' is at the Axminster Heritage Centre until October 29 2022.

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Opening hours are Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm and Saturday 10am to 1pm. Entrance is £4, under 16s go free and on the last Saturday of each month, entrance is free for residents with an EX13 postcode.

For more information visit