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Skills minister visits Fashion & Textile Museum

Skills minister David Lammy has visited Newham College's Academy for Fashion, Textiles and Jewellery at the Fashion and Textile Museum in Bermondsey Street.

David Lammy with FTM students
David Lammy MP with students at the newly launched academy in Bermondsey Street

The Minister was shown round the newly refurbished Fashion & Textile Museum before meeting employers from Savile Row and Hatton Garden.

The Bermondsey Street museum, founded by Zandra Rhodes, was acquired by Newham College just over a year ago to use as an training academy for the fashion industry.

Apart from a handful of special events the museum has been closed to visitors for almost two years. Work is now under way to open a new cafe and exhibition space in February 2008.

Newham College works closely with employers to develop the training programmes and apprenticeships the sector needs, and is currently the only college in the country delivering pioneering pre-apprentice programmes in bespoke tailoring and jewellery manufacturing.

During his visit David Lammy met some of the apprentices working at the FTM and in Savile Row to hear of their experiences. Mary Toole and Lauren Evans are based at the FTM, working to become qualified in events management and in business administration respectively, and Lucy Kenny and Dominic Rose are both on Newham College's bespoke tailoring programme and study at prestigious Savile Row companies including Gieves and Hawkes, Henry Poole and Dege and Skinner.

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