Today we go in Mason’s Wool Shop

January 29, 2018

wool patch
Gazing at the Abingdon 1556-2006 quilt in the library,
wool patch
I take a picture of the patch from Mason’s Wool Shop in Stert Street.

The first mention of Masons Wool Shop, in the Hooke’s Abingdon Directories, is in 1942. That must make it one of Abingdon’s longest running businesses, and older than the two Mason’s shops in Bath Street.
wool patch
Mason’s wool shop has a modest front. There is a display of wool in one window and fabric in the other. Above the shop sign is a blue plaque that reads “John Alder ‘The fortunate cooper‘ of the Mitre Inn lived here when he won the lottery in 1767. He gave much of his fortune to the town.”

Stepping inside the shop you first walk through an area displaying upholstery / curtain material, together with rolls of wipe-clean table cover material. There are also lots of buttons and other crafty things. Information about John Alder, with his picture, is displayed beside curtain runners, hooks, and cord ends.

The assistants serve from a large wooden counter that is large enough to measure and cut material.
wool patch
But what is most unexpected is the tardis-like dimensions of the shop. It just goes on and on and on – with wool trailing away into the distance.

Filed under: Business

13 Comments Leave a Comment

  • 1. ppjs  |  January 30, 2018 at 5:47 am

    Mason’s offers an amazing set of resources – I am glad it survives in a digital and Fat Face world.

  • 2. Daniel  |  January 30, 2018 at 8:20 am

    I love Mason’s.

  • 3. Janet  |  January 30, 2018 at 9:45 am

    It is a wonderful shop. most shops like this have, unfortunately gone.

  • 4. Peter Del  |  January 30, 2018 at 1:30 pm

    Sometimes, my sister comes from London just to visit Masons!

  • 5. Reductio ad absurdum  |  January 30, 2018 at 2:36 pm

    Masons is one of Abingdon’s destination stores that brings more footfall into Abingdon than all the bunting in the world ever will. They, and the other few destination stores in the town centre, should be paid by the BID (or at the very least exempted from payment) not the other way around.

  • 6. Jenny Smith  |  January 30, 2018 at 6:59 pm

    Mason’s Wool Shop was one of the reasons I was really glad to be offered a job in Abingdon eight years ago when I came back from living abroad.

  • 7. Abingdonian  |  January 30, 2018 at 7:34 pm

    Mason’s shops are indeed one of Abingdon’s treasures, & Mason’s Wool Shop, at 39 Stert Street, has a history well before 1942. Kelly’s Directory for 1930 shows a Miss K.E. Mason with a “Baby Linen Warehouse” at this address. Perhaps the family can provide more information?

  • 8. GRJ  |  January 30, 2018 at 8:06 pm

    I can’t agree more with the last few posts. On several occasions I have mentioned locally that I come from Abingdon and the response has been “that’s where Masons is”. Well done Masons.

  • 9. R.  |  January 31, 2018 at 9:46 am

    We have regular visits from Australian friends. Their first stop in Abingdon is Masons wool shop.

  • 10. pjh64  |  January 31, 2018 at 2:03 pm

    Hopefully they’ll be getting going with an online side to their business.

    Lots of independent specialist shops survive these days on internet orders.

    Lovely to see shops like this still around. They need support, and releasing from the ludicrous tyranny of business rates.

  • 11. Susan Quinn  |  February 9, 2018 at 6:15 pm

    Love Masons shops in Stert St and Bath St..
    Lovely staff who very knowledgeable and friendly.
    Susan Quinn

  • 12. ann loescher  |  August 24, 2018 at 9:59 am

    I never go to Abingdon without stopping in one or more of the Masons shops. There are not enough shops like them left with friendly and knowledgeable staff and thousands of useful things to choose from. Thank you for still being there in spite of all the tribulations that face small businesses todays. The town of Abingdon is more useful than Oxford just because it has Masons!

  • 13. June Grof  |  November 19, 2018 at 12:54 pm

    Great shop, fantastic stock, helpful staff, I say if you can’t get it at Masons you will not get it anywhere else, they are second to none. It is a treasure trove of all craft goodies, a few weeks ago I needed some special curtain hooks, they stock them hurrah!

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