Harris weaver scoops award

Mrs Linda Birkbeck (Managing Director, House of Bruar, Perthshire) and Donald John MacKay MBE (Weavers Company Silver Medal Winner).
Mrs Linda Birkbeck (Managing Director, House of Bruar, Perthshire) and Donald John MacKay MBE (Weavers Company Silver Medal Winner).

The Livery Company award for renowned Harris Tweed weaver Donald John MacKay MBE of the Luskentyre Harris Tweed Company took place in London on Tuesday 19th February when he received the Weavers Company Silver Medal, which is presented annually by the Worshipful Company of Weavers, the oldest of the City of London Livery companies.

The award is made in recognition of an individual’s outstanding contribution to the weaving industry in the UK, and the ceremony was held at the Saddlers’ Hall in the City where, with 80 guests from industry, education, fashion and design, Mr MacKay received the medal from Mrs Linda Birkbeck, Managing Director of The House of Bruar, the leading UK maker of country clothing.

Chairman of the Weavers’ Textile Committee, James Sugden OBE, commented: “Donald John is quite simply an amazing exponent of the textile industry, and it is thanks in no small part to his determination, sagacity and hard work that the Harris Tweed industry last year recorded the highest annual output for 15 years. He has been, and still remains, a tireless ambassador for the industry which is now recognised as a truly rejuvenated and international niche brand.”

A spokesperson for the Harris Tweed Authority added: “The Harris Tweed Authority are very proud and honored that such a prestigious organisation as the Worshipful Company of Weavers have recognised Donald John Mackay’s contribution to the UK Textiles Sector. Donald John, together with his lovely wife Maureen contribute very significantly and generously to the promotional and PR efforts of the Authority.

“They give freely of their time, knowledge and hospitality to journalists, buyers and the many other visitors we host every season. In addition to his outstanding skill as a weaver, Donald John is recognised very often the global face of Harris Tweed weaving.”

At the same event scholarships were awarded to weave students from the Royal College of Art, Central St. Martins School of Arts & Design, Huddersfield University, Derby University and Loughborough University,