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Apprenticeship spotlight: Lucy Tran at Barrie Knitwear in Hawick


Lucy Tran, an experienced seamer who has worked at Barrie Knitwear for the past six years, has recently completed an SVQ in Manufacturing Textiles. She has shown a willingness to learn various roles and take on additional responsibilities during this time, which has allowed Lucy to diversify her learning and given greater flexibility within the business.

Lucy Tran of Barrie Knitwear

Barrie Knitwear is a historic manufacturer of premium cashmere established in the Scottish Borders since 1903, renowned for our creativity, combining new technology and skills to produce luxury cashmere products for prestigious fashion houses within the couture markets, including Chanel, for many years.

After returning from Maternity leave, Lucy joined the Employee Forum in which she has added great value and given the opportunity use her clear communication skills to be one of the voices of the workforce. Lucy has demonstrated that she understands the business needs and future, therefore has been able to communicate the right message to the workforce within her positive influential style.

To continue to develop Lucy, the opportunity to study for SVQ in Manufacturing Textiles became available through the local college (Borders College) and the Textile Centre based in Hawick.

Lucy has embraced this opportunity and with her time management and drive completed this whilst working and bringing up a young family.

Alistair Young, Textile Centre Manager, said: “Lucy is passionate, has a commitment to learning and eagerness to develop within the business. She is now passing on her knowledge and skills to new employees, using her highly effective communications and engagement skills.”

Lucy’s assessor said: “On first meeting Lucy during the initial induction, I found her to be immediately engaged in the process of her achieving her Modern Apprenticeship in Manufacturing Textile Products SQFC5.

There was always an eagerness to have more information so she could present her evidence as detailed and concise as possible.

Lucy’s detailed explanation on some of the more technical aspects of her role made for easy reading. Lucy was aware of time element surrounding each unit and the completion within time frame, this was also difficult as we entered lockdown and further Covid-19 restrictions, that hampered and made the candidate and the assessor explore different scenarios for course activities.

It was clear during the duration of the MA, her growing self-confidence, the questioning of how something was done in a particular way, and how perhaps it could be done better. Also during the formal review process this identified opportunities for Lucy to progress to a charge hands role due to absence, she was more than happy to embrace this, her attitude to this new role, was to learn with speaking to colleagues, peers and her mentor to gain knowledge for her to undertake the task at hand and make it a success.

This is evident as on completion of her award she has continued the new duties and additional responsibility.

Lucy is a great example of someone who is interested in developing knowledge, skills and understanding of the business to give her a portfolio that will enable her to grow as both personally and professionally.”

Find out more about the Textile Centre in Hawick here

National Apprenticeship Week 2021

UKFT is the Government-appointed Sector Skills Body for fashion and textiles in all four nations, working with employers, education providers and other stakeholders to raise the skills and productivity of the people who work in the UK fashion & textile industry.

UKFT Skills & Training