London - Prime Minister Theresa May hosted a welcome reception for the British fashion industry Thursday night in Number 10 Downing Street, ahead of the official start of London Fashion Week on Friday.
Together with the British Fashion Council Dame Natalie Massenet, the Prime Minister welcomed a number of apprentices from some of Britain's leading fashion labels, such as Charlotte Olympia, John Smedley, Private White VC and RA Smart Holdings, in addition to the British Fashion Council scholarship recipients and graduate traineeships from the Royal College of Art and Central St Martins.
During the evening reception, May said she was "delighted" to meet some of Britain's up and coming talented designers and discuss the government's ongoing commitment to support apprentices - both in the fashion industry and beyond - to ensure they succeed. "British fashion is of huge importance to our country, contributing 28 billion pounds to the UK economy and supporting nearly 900,000 jobs," said May.
"I was delighted to welcome representatives from across the industry to Downing Street ahead of London Fashion Week - which is one of the biggest and most influential fashion events in the world...The Government I lead will do everything we can, including providing the right investment in training and skills, to help everyone, whatever people’s backgrounds, to go as far as their talents can take them. I am proud to say that our British fashion industry is a global leader in trade, creativity and innovation."
Dame Massenet added that it was a "great honour" that the Prime Minister invited several representatives from the fashion industry to 10 Downing Street Thursday evening, stressing the event was a sign of the "ongoing value" that the government places on the fashion industry. "Our designers continue to grow their businesses, embrace technology and innovate," said Massenet. "In February, Burberry ignited the movement of "See Now, Buy Now" which was seen in New York and will now be seen in London."
"London is unique. It is a great place to live and work. It is a dynamic fashion, business, creative and cultural capital and we have no doubt we will show it at its best over the next few days."
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Photo 1: Prime Minister Theresa May with apprentices and scholarship winners; from L-R: Callum Brooke (Burberry Apprentice), Emma Sheldon (RA Smart Holdings), Mark Glasgow (Graduate Traineeship Winner), Hannah Porter (Graduate Traineeship Winner), Prime Minister Theresa May, Nabil El-Nayal (MA Scholarship Winner), Serena Gili (MA Scholarship Winner), Tom Chapman (Private White V.C Apprentice), Sam Lavelle (John Smedley Apprentice)
Photo 2: Prime Minister Theresa May, Natalie Massenet with BFC/Vogue Designer Fashion Fund Winners and Fund Supporter, Christopher Bailey; from L-R: Peter Pilotto, Christopher De Vos, Mary Katrantzou, Prime Minister Theresa May, Natalie Massenet, Christopher Bailey, Sophia Webster, Nicholas Kirkwood