Rye High Street milliners Herald & Heart has begun working in partnership with Rye Studio School and the young talented people who study there. This is part of a work-placement programme operated by the school. “It is so exciting to be working in partnership with many employers, but especially Herald & Heart,” said Jo Townshend, Principal of the school. “They are such a fabulous company, with a great ethos, who support up-and-coming talent.”
Work-placement opportunities for students are vital, says Townshend: “The younger students gain basic employability skills, whilst the eldest become key members of a working team, either locally or in London. This allows students to gain experience in creative placements whilst working towards their traditional qualifications of BTechs and A-levels at the Studio School. They can build their CV with a portfolio of contacts and an important creative industries network.”
This philosophy is one that Herald & Heart has supported since the firm began. “Herald & Heart has a strong history in supporting local colleges,” said Ken White, director. “When we were based in London, we had a constant stream of work placement students from Kensington and Chelsea College and the London College of Fashion. Many of these students have gone on to successful careers in fashion and millinery.”
The two students who achieved a place on the Herald & Heart team for their work placement are year 13 students. Isabella Woodcock is a textiles, art and photography student, who wants to study fashion design in further education, and Jessica Lench is a textiles, art and business student, who wants to explore fashion marketing at university. These talented students will be able to develop personally and professionally during their time at Herald & Heart, gaining an insight into both the discipline of millinery as well as the running of a business. The broad nature of this work placement emphasizes the Studio School’s goal of using education and industry partnerships to create a generation of creative practitioners, who have diverse work skills as well as expertise in their own disciplines.
This emerging relationship between education and industry within Rye is greatly beneficial to all parties involved, especially the gifted individuals who are aiming to continue in their love of arts after school and their work placements.
Photo: Sophie Desai