Why Skyrack? The word is derived from the Old English for Shire Oak, and was once the name for the area (known as a wapentake) centred on Headingley, Leeds, where the Shire Oak grew for over a thousand years. The old tree was finally removed in 1941, but the name remains.
Keeping Angora rabbits is ideal for those who love both rabbits and crafts. I have kept rabbits since childhood, and had an interest in crafts since the age of 7, when I spent one and a half years in hospital. It was then I learned to knit, crochet, embroider and sew. I learned to spindle spin when I was 12, following instructions in the Girl Guide Handbook, my father making my first spindle from a stacking wooden toy. (I still have that spindle, which produces wool fine enough for Shetland Lace.) My Shetland sheepdog provided my first wool for spinning.
I acquired my first Angora rabbit in 1997, when I had a settled lifestyle and a garden large enough for their runs, and joined both the National Angora Club and the British Rabbit Council. Although I do not exhibit due to time constraints, I was very proud to be involved in the standardisation of the Lilac Angora colour at the London show in 2014, when 3 of the 6 rabbits taken for the judges’ approval were Skyrack Lilacs.
At present Skyrack Angoras is home to 14 English Angora rabbits, comprising Angora rabbits of Smoke, Blue, Chocolate, Sooty Fawn and Lilac colours. Two of them are rescue Angoras, taken in after their owners sadly died. I’m hoping for a second litter in August, as the corona virus pandemic settles and lockdown eases.
Angora wool from my garden rabbits is available for sale to handspinners. I also sell wool for spinning on behalf of the National Angora Club, stocking White, Gold, Brown Grey and Cream as well as the above colours. Sadly all our mill spun wool has now been sold. Contact me for further details.
Galaxy, a Chocolate Angora in full show coat, shown by Sally May.