This month, EU-backed Welsh Government's Sector Priorities Fund pilot project, will see fifteen new apprentices start work for a diverse range of companies including Corgi Hosiery, Melin Tregwynt, AJM Sewing and Resist Studio Gallery. Over the next year, in addition to learning on the job, the apprentices will also receive training from Coleg Sir Gâr.
The new fashion and textiles apprenticeship - the first of its kind in Wales - has been specifically designed to meet the industry needs identified by fashion and textiles employers. Apprenticeships are an attractive ‘earn while you learn' option for anyone looking to get into the industry and apprentices will gain the skills that are needed to ensure the future growth and competitiveness of each business.
The announcement was made during the Making it in Wales careers talk at Cardiff Fashion Week, where GCSE and A-level students found out more about the apprenticeship, as well as the breadth of careers in the fashion and textiles industry. An expert panel of top Welsh-based employers including designer Angela Gidden, Eifion Griffiths from Melin Tregwynt Woollen Mill, and James Mellor from AJM Sewing gave inspiring insights into the career opportunities available in the industry.
Designer Angela Gidden, who chairs the Fashion and Textiles Forum for Wales said, "Yesterday's event was all about inspiring the next generation of designers and manufacturers. The industry needs talented recruits and the Apprenticeship in Fashion and Textiles that has been developed by Creative Skillset Cymru together with fashion and textiles employers and companies in Wales will provide an important new entry route."
Huw Walters, Creative Skillset Cymru Director said, "To ensure the continued competitiveness of the fashion and textiles industry in Wales we need talented people from all backgrounds to work in the industry. Creative Skillset Cymru has worked in partnership with employers to develop the first ever Apprenticeship in Fashion and Textiles in Wales and we are delighted to have launched the pilot scheme at Cardiff Fashion Week."