Helping you to get the most out of our region


21st March 2022

These are exciting times for Rutland-based company woolroom. Recent achievements include a world exclusive product launch and Rutland’s first Queen’s Award for Enterprise in International Trade. Amander Meade speaks with the firm’s Managing Director, Chris Tattersall

Rutland Farmer Tom Scott whose flock contribute fleeces to woolroom products

During the 1950s and ’60s, alongside oil exploration, came new manmade fibres. Components such as rayon and polyester dominated both fashion and homewares – remember the introduction of the ‘continental quilt’? Unable to compete on price, the use of British wool fell into the doldrums. Fast forward 50 years and consumers are keen to move away from the use of fast, disposable, non-biodegradable materials in favour of natural alternatives – ironically, those our great grandparents probably used.

Natural sleep solutions

With an encyclopaedic knowledge of the properties and benefits of wool, Chris Tattersall and his team at woolroom have spent the last 20 years breaking down misconceptions around the use of wool in the sleep environment. ‘Everything we do is focused around delivering natural sleep and especially tackling the rising problem of allergies, overheating and a general lack of deep, restorative sleep. Unlike with polyester, dust mites are unable to live in wool, so our products are ideal for asthma sufferers and those allergic to other irritants. Our bedding ranges are the only natural sleep solutions endorsed by Allergy UK.’ The firm’s mattresses and bedding also boast unparalleled moisture-management properties that aid temperature control, leading to improved sleep. ‘Wool is an all-year-round solution and should never be considered just a winter option. Wool bedding encourages a calming, peaceful night’s sleep 365 days a year.’

The Organic Washable Collection

Just launched in a world exclusive for the company is a unique range of organic wool bedding that is also machine washable – The Organic Washable Collection. ‘After years of research and endorsement by the Global Organic Textile Standards, we are delighted to offer our new collection as a genuine world first, which is tremendously exciting,’ says Chris. ‘We met the extremely rigorous testing processes, which include testing the soil in the pastures where the sheep feed, as well as every single element of production and manufacturing, in order to meet the highest organic standards. Those elements have now been combined with the practical ability to machine wash. Our products are all made from British wool and are ultimately traceable to the Farm Assured farms the individual sheep live on. We insist on wool from happy, healthy animals and that those standards are independently audited.’

Expansion and awards

Confident in his company’s products and having identified opportunities in the US sleep market, Chris decided to offer their unquestionable benefits to consumers in North America, where they were met with immense enthusiasm. ‘We launched a woolroom website in the US in 2018, and the response was phenomenal; the Californians in particular immediately “got it”, as they lead the world in trends around health and well being. They understood instantly that solving heat-regulation problems would have a profound effect on improving sleep and consequently a raft of related health problems.’ Such was the success of woolroom products in all 52 states, Chris was invited to accept a Queen’s Award for Enterprise, granted for outstanding achievement in International Trade – the first ever awarded to a Rutland company. ‘I was invited to presentation ceremonies in both Windsor Great Hall with HRH The Prince of Wales, and in Oakham Castle with Sarah Furness, the Lord-Lieutenant of Rutland – they were both fantastic and a wonderful acknowledgement of the team’s hard work.’

Chris believes the urgency of solving environmental problems to improve the health of the planet has focused attention on more natural and sustainable solutions to many issues, including poor sleep. ‘I truly believe wool has come full circle and is experiencing a new dawn. Our products will vastly outlive their “cheaper” synthetic rivals, and we calculate you can cocoon yourself in natural wool bedding for 10p per night over five years. A tiny price to pay to experience the wonders of wool.’ 

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