New stars on the small screen

Heathcoat Fabrics recently hosted a film crew for an afternoon. We were approached by a research reporter to have a look around our factory. Tern TV productions were producing a documentary series for BBC Four called Britain’s Lost Masterpieces. The documentary was being based at Knightshayes Court, the historic home of the Heathcoat-Amory family now owned by the National Trust, and the programme team wanted to cover John Heathcoat’s lacemaking legacy and the move of his factory from Loughborough to Tiverton from around 1816.

Filming took place in our recently purpose-built Weaving Preparation area, where all the warps get made ready for the Weaving process. Derek Taylor, who has worked at Heathcoat Fabrics for over 30 years accompanied Emma Dabiri, the programme presenter, to talk about the processes. Debbie who also works in the department demonstrated her manual threading skills to show how the warp ends would have been threaded a few decades ago; a process which is now fully automated. The film team were then shown the range of modern looms currently in production; high-speed air-jet models producing our lightweight parachute products; rapier looms weaving Synchrotec fabrics for the automotive industry and our bespoke own-design shuttle looms producing unique niche products. To close off the day, the crew took some general shots of the Factory entrance with Emma to round up the location filming at Heathcoat Fabrics.

The programme was shown on BBC Four, Wednesday 15 August at 9.00pm.