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Inspired with case for pens

Young Enterprise team refashions old clothes into snazzy fold-up pencil cases.

pensyCAST-off denim and camouflage material is desperately needed by a group of entrepreneurial students at Astor College.

The team off 22 teenagers, aged 16 and 17, (pictured) have set up in business as part of this year’s Young Enterprise competition and aim to refashion the old clothes into snazzy fold-up pencil cases.

Schools across the county will fight for the title of top young company of the year 2012.

The teens, under the company name Inspirationery, first got together in September after they were chosen by teachers and Young Enterprise link teacher Polly Butterfield.

She said: “They were all picked because they are exceptional in some way. They have all done well in their GCSEs and are also able to juggle other things as well.

“We felt that it is now such a competitive environment for jobs and university places that doing this programme will set our students apart from everyone else and give them business skills.”

After discarding other ideas the youngsters plumped for the pencil case and stationary kit which was designed by art enthusiast Michael Fletcher.

The 16-year-old said: “It was hard trying to find the right fabric but then we thought we should do something where we could recycle.”

Each pencil case has the Inspirationery logo, one for males based on student Shaun Court, 17, and one for females based on student Harriet Baker, also 17.

Deputy managing director Katie Ashton, 16, said: “We thought off-cuts of denim, for girls, and camouflage, for boys, would be a good way to get material locally by asking people to give us old jeans and jackets and camouflage stuff.”

The team are planning a marketing campaign with £200 working capital in the bank, raised through sponsored events, and are keen to get started.

But one more vital ingredient is needed – a local seamstress who can give them a good quote for running up an initial order of 100 pencil cases with possibly more orders to follow.

Sales director Sinead Driver, 16, said: “We need to find someone who can let us know how much it will cost and how long it will take. Then we can decide on a sale price.”

The team, which has Lisa Dixon from Creabilis-SA biotechnology company as a mentor, need to start production in time to fill orders by March.

Dover Harbour Board chief executive Bob Goldfield said: “We have been thrilled by the success of Young Enterprise in Dover district over the past few years and very much hope that all of the Young Enterprise schools and colleges will continue to participate and develop.”

The Young Enterprise competition will have a public speaking event for all the district’s school companies in February with a district final being held at Dover Grammar School for Girls on April 25 and a county final at Greenwich University, Medway, on May 3.

Donations can be taken to Astor College or contact Miss Butterfield on [email protected] To get in touch to quote for production of the pencil cases contact Polly on the e-mail above.


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