The making of nets, an open textile in which threads are fused, looped or knotted at their intersections, historically for fishing and trapping animals.
|Historic area of significance||UK, especially rural areas|
|Area currently practised||UK|
|Origin in the UK|
|Current no. of professionals (main income)|
|Current no. of professionals (sideline to main income)
|Current no. of trainees|
|Current total no. serious amateur makers
|Current total no. of leisure makers
|Minimum no. of craftspeople required||50, because of its distributed and localised nature.|
Historically nets were used for fishing and animal trapping. Today, hand-knitted nets are are rarely used for fishing (instead, industrially produced sheet netting is used), a notable exception being the hand-knitted nets used by the Black Rock Lave Net Heritage Fishery in Wales. Hand-knitted nets are still used for pest control and for sport, such as ferreting for rabbits. Today, there are very few commercial net makers – but there are many makers knitting nets as a hobby and for their own use.
Purse net making in particular is strong and popular, carried out on a small scale by many people for their own use and local sales. No large scale commercial hand making. Long net making is less common.
purse nets (for rabbits)
- lave nets
Issues affecting the viability of the craft
- There has been a marked reduction in rabbit populations over the last couple of years – if this continues many net makers will stop.
- Availability of materials.
Viability of the sport these nets support, i.e. ferreting.
A change in the law could end it.
- The internet and YouTube have been a huge help in documenting and transferring the skills.
No formal organisations – but plenty of Facebook sites and YouTube channels
Craftspeople currently known
- M and L Nets – Fourth generation net making company