Member of Parliament for Amber Valley


Tailor Maid helps a young constituent start a promising career

We’ve done much on youth unemployment here in Amber Valley, and it’s now halved since the last election, but we’re doing more to help where we can. This year, we’re providing funding for 20,000 new apprenticeships across the country and axing the jobs tax for employment on young people under the age of twenty-five. We’re also increasing funding for the sciences in universities and last year saw a record high number of university applications from the poorest backgrounds.

But while we can and are doing a lot to help young people, all too often the help that small businesses provide to them in giving them the first start in a career goes unrecognised – and I think it’s important that we do praise business for helping young people along their way. I came across a very heart-warming story of this very nature last week.

Bryony Roberts, 17, of Loscoe, will soon be embarking on a promising career in tailoring involving the world-famous Savile Rowe Company, thanks to help she received from Tailor Maid, High Street, Ripley.

Bryony’s story started when she approached the owner of the Tailor Maid shop, Louise Bastard. She asked if she could observe the tailoring and alterations skills that they do so well at her shop. Within one week, Mrs Bastard had noticed that she had the skills required to become a tailor herself, and took her on as a paid member of staff, working part-time while she studied for her A Levels.

Ms Roberts then went on a search for a course that she could undertake to formally train as a tailor. Mrs Bastard helped her in this search, taking her to visit colleges in and around the country. Finally, she contacted Savile Row Company to ask whether they had any training courses or opportunities available.

She was in turn passed on to Newham College in East London, which runs a course that sends students to the Savile Row Company to train on their tailoring.

With the help of Mrs Bastard, Ms Roberts received an interview and they were so impressed with her skills that she will begin the course after she finishes her A Levels in September 2014.

Clearly, to work on a training programme with one of the most prestigious tailors in the world will set Bryony on the path she needs.

Credit should go to the very talented people at Tailor Maid, and its owner, Mrs Bastard, whose help made this possible.