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British manufacturing needs support of industry

Over the past couple of years there has been a huge resurgence in British production as both retailers and manufacturers have realised the need to keep the UK’s skills alive.

This week Drapers reported that British manufacturing could be set for a further revival as the new owners of Aquascutum’s former factory are courting retailers in a bid to expand its output. The factory, now called The Clothing Works, is working on trials with retailers including Marks & Spencer with the hope these will turn into permanent contracts.

With events such as the Jubilee and the Royal wedding still fresh in the publics mind the British population has really embraced its patriotic side and there is a renewed appetite for home grown product, something retailers should really take advantage of.

Many I have spoken to in my time at Drapers have voiced concerns about how the manufacturing skills in this country are at risk of dying out. Unless people take advantage of opportunities given by the likes of this Corby factory the skills really will face extinction.

Retailers and brands must take responsibility for funding the preservation of British manufacturing. If they do not put their money where their mouth is by creating garments in factories closer to home then I fear not just the skills will disappear but the factories that hold such a rich heritage in the world of fashion.

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