A Royal seal of approval for trading groups

Two social enterprises based in a former pub in a Northumberland ex-mining village will receive a Royal visitor this week.

The Earl of Wessex is due to visit the centre run by the Lynemouth Community Development Trust on Friday, May 1.

He will meet staff working on commissions to supply Selfridges with chocolates and fudges made by the Kenspeckle business and WEAVE, a project set up to utilise the sewing skills of former ‘rag trade’ factory workers, who are busy preparing eye-catching uniforms for toy store Hamleys.

At WEAVE, Prince Edward will meet Ann Kidd from Lynemouth and Emma Gallacher of Newbiggin, who are working on the Hamleys contract that was secured through a trade contract.

Already they have made staff clothing including toy soldier uniforms, doll-like dresses and racing overalls for staff not just working in London’s Regent Street but in other Hamleys across the UK, Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Russia.

Bill Tarbit who chairs Lynemouth Trust, said: “We are delighted and honoured that the Prince is coming to see for himself some of the quite remarkable things we are achieving at Lynemouth.”

“It is almost hard to believe that in such a small venture in a former mining village, we have built up trading links with two of the most famous names in world retailing and that is something that we are immensely proud of.

“What our links with Selfridges and Hamleys clearly demonstrate is the quality of our work and products and we are looking forward to showing the Prince just what we are achieving here at Lynemouth.”