Langholm and Hawick collaborate on textile training course
A GROWTH in demand for workers in the textile industry on both sides of the border has prompted a collaborative training scheme based in Langholm.
The Langholm Initiative has joined forces with the Centre of Excellence in Textiles in Hawick to provide the training.
It will be delivered by Hawick which has direct links to
employers in the sector.
Trainees will learn vital skills within the sector as well as communication skills, team working, workplace-based health and safety and help with CV and interview techniques.
These skills include winding, warping, warping and drawing, looming, looming and weaving and weaving.
There are currently significant employment opportunities in the industry and the course will enable trainees to realise their potential, build their confidence and earn a certificate of completion.
The project in Langholm is being led by Judith Johnson of Textiles Eskdale who, on
Monday, accompanied a group on a trip around Drove Weaving with Robbie Trussler.
Judith said: “We’ve had a look around the place today to see what’s here and they can come back individually if they want.”
There were four pupils from Langholm Academy who were accompanied by Shirley Jones of Skills Development Scotland who is in school once a week.
Also attending was Sean Bell, a maths and computing teacher, who represents Developing the Young Workforce.
The three S5 pupils were Ryan Johnstone, Jay Gordon and Jack Henderson.
Ryan said: “I have been doing some weaving on the machines here during the holidays.”
Jay said: “I wanted to have a look around and see what it’s about. I’ve not been before and I enjoyed looking at the
machines. I might do something with engineering.”
Jack added; “Like Jay, I wanted to come and have a look and see the range of jobs being done. I liked seeing all the machines working.”
Evie Smith, S6, said: “I was offered the chance to come along so I did. I came out of curiosity.
“I’m interested in fashion to a certain degree and it’s nice to know what’s available in this area.”
Although he was not currently recruiting workers, Robbie said there were opportunities for people with the right interest.
“Linton Tweeds in Carlisle and Lochcarron, which owns Drove Weaving, are looking for workers.
“There is a shortage in the
industry as a whole. The days of whole families working in the mills has long gone but the industry is expanding again.
“Modern technology is helping and, while it’s not as labour
intensive, it still needs people on the looms.”
Judith added: “Lochcarron is very interested in seeing how this training programme goes.
“It’s the first time we’ve done anything in partnership with the centre in Hawick.
“I’m pleased with the level of interest in this new training
opportunity and am still open to expressions of interest.
“For anyone, who didn’t manage to come along on Monday, there is still time to contact me to apply for a place, preferably by next Monday, February 3.”