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Kilnsey Park owner Jamie Roberts brings home the alpacas
9:00am Friday 16th August 2013 in News
An important era in Yorkshire’s history was commemorated when the owner of one of Craven’s top rural visitor attractions donned Victorian attire and began a trek with a trio of alpacas in tow.
Jamie Roberts, from Kilnsey Park, set out from Saltaire to return home as part of the park’s 35th anniversary celebrations.
The walk also honoured an important anniversary in the history of Salts Mill, one of the world’s greatest industrial powerhouses in Victorian times and now a cultural centre and UNESCO World Heritage site.
It was 120 years ago when Jamie’s great great grandfather Sir James Roberts took over Salts Mill from the family of the founder, Sir Titus Salt, and saved it from bankruptcy.
As the mill’s fortunes – and those of his family – were largely built on spinning alpaca wool, Jamie decided it was a fitting start for his walk with the camelid trio which will take up residence at Kilnsey Park.
Jamie said: “Bringing home the alpacas to Kilnsey is a fantastic way of celebrating my family’s heritage and connections with Salts Mill. The success of the mill enabled my ancestors to purchase the Kilnsey Estate in 1911 and it has remained in our family ever since.
“In 1978 we opened a trout farm and trekking centre and since then the estate has gone from strength to strength not only as a visitor attraction but also as a centre for conservation and as one of the most sustainable businesses in the UK.”
A weekend of celebrations was held on Saturday and Sunday, which included family activities, outdoor performances, music and local food and drink.
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