One of the substitute yarns suggested was one by Old Maiden Aunt. After looking at her site, I emailed my aunt, and she was able to view the yarn I had in mind. On Thursday I ordered it and it arrived Friday morning.
Hand painted in shades of brown and chestnut, with the wonderful feel of baby suri alpaca, fine merino and silk, this will knit up into a beautiful lightweight and warm shawl.
It took me just over half an hour to wind the yarn, using my wooden swift.
I found a size of needle suggested and knitted up a trial swatch. I need to buy more needles: two 100 cm needles, and for hours I was wondering whether I should get the addi turbo or lace needles. I tried the knitting shop in Warwick, but no luck there. As I knitted the swatch on bamboo, and I know that with my hands as they are, wooden or bamboo needles are much kinder, I decided to stick with my hunch. It was like looking for needles in a haystack, finding the right top quality ones, right length etc...and now two Addi Bamboo Circular needles are on order from English Yarns. Next week when they arrive, I shall start in earnest.