Collector in hunt for historic silk hankies
ACOLLECTOR is appealing for help to boost her hoard of historic hankies.
Brenda Mathews has spent more than 60 years building up her collection which sits at 4,500 originating from all over the world.
Her obsession saw her feature in the Express 15 years ago when she successfully appealed for readers to help her trace a 1937 Coronation silk hanky woven and printed in Macclesfield.
But now, following her first visit to the town, Brenda, from West Sussex, is back on the hunt.
During her tour of the Silk Museum Brenda spotted references to a Silk Queen of the 1930s and believes there may have been commemorative hankies produced at the time.
She said: “Some years ago I acquired a cotton handkerchief printed with a portrait of a Cotton Queen and now wonder whether a silk hanky was produced each year showing the Silk Queen. If anyone knows I should love to hear from them.”
Since her first contact with the town in 2002, Brenda has amassed several silk hankies, including a pristine Coronation 1937 souvenir folded in the original box that pictured the Mayor and Mayoress, and one produced in 1961 for Macclesfield’s 700th Charter anniversary.
She said: “I treasure them all. So as you can imagine, on our recent visit we were especially keen to visit the Heritage Centre and then Park Lane Silk Museum.
“What an amazing collection of fascinating exhibits and information that contains.
“We had a guided tour of Paradise Mill and saw the original looms.
“Everyone we met was so friendly and helpful and we really enjoyed following the Town Heritage Trail. It was a lovely stay in Macclesfield.”
If you can help Brenda with any information about Silk Queen hankies or own one she could have, she can be contacted on 01444 243774 or brendaMmathews@ gma i l . com.
Brenda Mathews with her collection of hankies
Macclesfield band Cassia