Led by renowned Interior Designers; William & Sarah Woods
Woods of Harrogate is an historically important family business like no other; with roots in linen production and supply dating back to 1733. It is with our profound understanding of linens and design along with our scrupulous attention to detail that Woods has become widely regarded as one of the finest linen shops in the world. Located in the beautiful spa town of Harrogate and boasting the most comprehensive range of home linens and luxury accessories, our family business established as a shop in 1895 is a ‘must visit’.
Our promise is a family driven level of care and attention to every detail unlike anywhere else. We curate with a passion, the very best home luxuries and linens, without compromise.
Drawing upon over 250 years of manufacturing expertise, we pride ourselves on selecting beautifully designed goods that deliver on quality and longevity. Your satisfaction truly matters to us.
“I’m passionate about beautiful colours, textures and tradition. So when I’m not designing interiors, I’m buying goods from all over the world which embody these principle elements and presenting them for you.”
“I have one mantra: ’It’s never good enough’. Unfortunately, mediocrity has become so commonplace and that is just not acceptable to us as we strive for perfection.”
“As a little girl I remember visiting my Father in his magical shop, I was dazzled by the beauty of home design and especially the wonderfully-woven fabrics.
After qualifying in London I joined my Father for my ‘real’ interior design education. After 50+ years as a BIID professional interior designer, his wisdom and nationally-recognised style inspired me to new heights.
To this day I live my passion for period interior design, and am so driven to always do better. I was of course proud when we were nationally recognised by The Telegraph in their ‘Top 20 Interior Designers in Britain’ awards but I won’t rest there!”
Our Harrogate shop.
Established in 1895, our customers describe stepping into Woods as a serene and inspiring experience.
A shop full of curiosities, like the letters from Royal patrons; the oldest working exterior clock in Harrogate and beautiful oak-panelled gated-lift, still in day-to-day use. They often spend time taking in all the showrooms set over three floors in our Grade II listed building; bursting with period character and unique charm. They appreciate our carefully designed displays, which are colourful and aspirational and always changing, giving them the perfect excuse to visit regularly.
William Woods begins his career as a Mercer in Laugharne, South Wales.
During the reign of King George II and a period of great upheaval in the textile industry. Cloth production is moving from the home to the factory and artisans are seeking ways to increase productivity. Silk, wool, fustian and linen are being overtaken by cotton, and weaving and spinning technologies are becoming mechanised.
During the reign of King George III.
William’s trade is passed down to his son, Thomas Woods. British Agricultural Revolution has reached its peak and the Industrial Revolution is in full flow, fuelled by unprecedented growth in the rural population. Cotton and wool mills, powered by water then by steam, are starting to become a common sight, particularly in the North of England.
Thomas' son, George starts at Castle Mill, Knaresborough
Having worked as a travelling salesman based in Bristol, aided by recent developments in the infrastructure of canals and railways, Thomas’ son George moves to Yorkshire to work for Knaresborough’s famous Castle Mill.
A promotion for George Woods to Castle Mill Manager.
Never one to rest on his laurels in this prestigious supplier to all Royal Palaces. His work ethic did not go unnoticed, he's rewarded with a significant promotion to Manager of Castle Mill.
William E. Woods founds the family’s first linen shop in Princes Street, Harrogate, cementing the Woods’ reputation as purveyors of the finest luxury linens and consolidating their rich heritage.
The door read 'Wm. E. Woods, The Draper' and featured the same exterior clock as on the present building.
Woods relocates to its present location on 67 Station Parade, Harrogate.
The famous Woods' clock also moves to its' new home, high up above the now listed veranda on Prince Albert Row.
Upon William’s passing, one of his two sons, George Appleby, takes over the family business.
Employee James Lambert goes off to serve in the Eighth Army in the Second World War and fights at El Alamein in 1942.
George enlists leaving the business in the hands of his brother, the eminent Lawyer: Ernest Woods.
The war is over! James Lambert and George return from service, George having reached the rank of Major.
Having joined in 1913, loyal staff member, Tom Bryant completes 50 years with Woods.
Longevity, a traditional value continued here at Woods to this day.
A tragic accident. George is tragically killed in a car accident with his wife Thalia on the way to visit one of the company’s suppliers.
Their memory lives on in everything we do.
George’s son, also named William Ernest, relinquishes his pursuit of a career in law to take over the family business, aged just seventeen.
He is mentored by his uncle Ernest and joined by a group of loyal staff, including James Lambert and Stanley Newbould.
After a stint working in Ireland for a firm of spinners, weavers, bleachers and dyers; William attends a formal course of interior design training at Heal & Son in London, William then returns to Harrogate.
In the years that follow he travels to the Far East, India, America and Europe to learn about linen in all its guises and create links with designers and manufacturers. He then goes on to develop the company’s interior design service and establishes new in-house workshops.
Loyal employee James Lambert passes away after dedicating 64 years to Woods.
Many of the traditions of Woods were upheld by Mr Lambert, he was held in high-esteem by customers and colleagues alike.
William becomes one of the first members of the BIDA (British Interior Design Association) which later becomes known as the BIID (British Institute of Interior Design).
The BIID aims to promote professionalism in interior design.
William marries Jennifer and they have two children, Sarah Thalia and Jonathan William.
William goes on to purchase the adjoining shop to accommodate the growing business.
A milestone is reached and Woods celebrates its' centenary.
A '100 Flower Garden' is planted in the town centre by the whole family.
William’s daughter, Sarah Thalia, starts working for Woods as Interior Design Director.
Her eye for detail, maturity and professionalism soon earn her a loyal client list and a reputation that belies her age.
William’s son Jonathan starts working for Woods, following in the footsteps of his father, having travelled extensively and lived in the Far East for three years before settling into the family business.
We have specialised in Wedding list and Trousseaus for over 100 years. Furnish your home to last a lifetime and choose from our extensive ranges of...Read more
Oooo what a treat!! I’m always needing to wash my hands because I live on Exmoor with lots of cats and my springer Bruvver. I always notice a nice smelling soap so I decided to treat myself. Beautiful packaging, speedy service and my hands are now extra clean and smelling gorgeous. Just because you live in the back of beyond doesn’t mean you can’t bring a bit of the sunny Mediterranean into your home.
This is, honestly the BEST duster I have ever used.
Having lived in my house for almost 33-years - I've always liked to keep glass, mirrors, ornament's, wood, etc. clean & shiny.
This duster is an excellent size for all of that & the high quality material is perfect for buffing to a high shine! 😊
They are the best washing up cloth/cleaning cloth ever. I glad to have found your company again.Brilliant.
One of very limited stockists of ladies handkerchiefs. Having lived in Harrogate and now in Cheshire, I still rely on Woods’ quality.
Children's Handkerchief Collection
Beautiful linen lovely & thick & so warm just what we needed thanks
The service and quality of goods from Woods were excellent. It was my pleasure to be your customer.
I’m very pleased with the exfoliating bath towel and the packaging was thoughtful and special enough to leave as the cover for this gift for my brother.
We were in Sicily last month and my wife was very taken with Ortigia (part of Syracusa), and in particular the image of the Leopards, the original of which we saw in Palermo. I decided to buy her the small bag as a present, tracked one down through you, and found you service to be fantastic. The bag arrived, very well wrapped and completely pristine. She loves it. Thanks very much.
very heat proof and not too thick that it’s hard to grasp trays from Aga like my old gloves. I wouldn’t buy any other oven gloves again. Veg high quality and excellent price.
The quality of the towels was excellent, very soft and absorbent. Also, I appreciated the great packaging and quick delivery.
Very pleased with the quality of the flannelette bed linen. Delivered promptly & well wrapped in brown paper & string, a blast from the past on how items were packaged!
Absolutely perfect, quality very good the sheets were really warm, perfect fit , true to size. Delivery was fantastic, very happy 👍👌
My flat sheet arrived on back order and was beautifully packed by Victoria. It washed and ironed well. Made up nicely on the bed and was wide enough to cope with my very deep matress. Then it came to sleeping in it! I can ony say what a wonderful experience that was, the feel is so soft and warm. I shall be buying more. A great product from Woods.
I’ve been looking for some “proper” T Towels for a long time - all the ones I could find were thin and small but now I’m a happy bunny thanks to a recommendation from a friend - you’ve a new life time customer. I was away this weekend with another family and I took a couple of my new T Towels as we were self catering- safe to say my friend has now placed an order.