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UKFT Careers Stand and Pop Up Factory

The UKFT Careers Stand and Pop Up Factory is a fully portable factory experience bringing careers and apprenticeship information, local employers and hands-on industry tasters to young people across the UK.

At each event the display is tailored to ensure the products and sector information is specific to the local employment landscape, some of which is donated by local employers.

The stand is manned by a team of experts consisting of independent trainers, employers, and training providers who deliver demonstrations and careers guidance followed by direction to appropriate resources and opportunities. Demonstrations include knitting, dying /colouring, weaving, embroidery and industrial sewing techniques.

Global and regional career opportunities are highlighted and supported by information boards covering each of the apprenticeship frameworks offered by the sector. The display also includes information on industry growth and future expectations.

The pop-up factory consists of a variety of industrial machinery and guidance to allow the students to have-a-go at producing simple products using industrial techniques.

Get Involved

If you would like more information about getting involved in or hosting the Careers Stand and Pop Up Factory please contact info@ukft.org.

Taking the Show On the Road

With the generous support of the Clothworkers’ Company and The Drapers’ Company the UKFT Careers Stand and Pop Up Factory will be taking to the road for three years from Autumn 2020. The roadshow is part of a wider UKFT Future Talent project to promote the wealth of opportunities to work within or alongside the UK manufacturing sector.

This initiative will to help address one of the major barriers to growth faced by UK manufacturers – attracting new talent into this vital part of the industry.

“There are currently thousands of job vacancies in the UK fashion and textile manufacturing sector. While there are several reasons for this, the absolute key is that so many people don’t know that there is still a manufacturing industry here in the UK with a huge range of fantastic jobs available. Right now around 120,000 people are employed in the UK manufacturing industry and collectively they produce over £9 billion pounds of fashion and textiles every year.”

UKFT Chief Executive Adam Mansell

Over three years the UKFT Careers Stand and Pop Up Factory will run at 30 major careers events, across all four nations, which will be attended by over 150,000 people.

Regional Events

The UKFT Careers Stand and Pop Up Factory has been already successfully showcased at a number of regional events.

UKFT at Skills London
UKFT were joined by member Apparel Tasker in November 2022 where visitors could discover various vacancies advertised by local employers on our live job board. We also organised hands-on industry activities. Read more…

UKFT at Skills Cymru
UKFT were joined by Gower College and Fashion Enter, in October 2022, who delivered Industrial Sewing, Adobe and Pattern Cutting workshops. Read more…

UKFT at Skills Scotland
UKFT attended Skills Scotland in November 2022 with local industry partners. Activity included a Pattern Cutting and Draping workshop delivered by Glasgow Clyde College; Recycling activity delivered by ASC Clothing; Weaving and Screen Printing by Herriot Watt and Industrial Knitting by Barrie Knitwear Read more…

UKFT at the Skills Yorkshire Show
UKFT joined Burberry, Keighley College and Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership at the Skills Yorkshire Show in November 2019 to promote the thriving industry in Yorkshire, with a range of career paths that can offer international opportunities. Read more…

UKFT at the Derbyshire Skills Festival
At the Derbyshire Skills Festival in September 2018 UKFT members John Smedley, David Nieper and specialist training provider KTL Ltd, worked with young people to show them what kinds of skills would be involved in a promising career in the industry. Read more…

UKFT at the Festival of Making
At the Festival of Making in Blackburn in 2018 UKFT were joined by Blackburn College and Herbert Parkinson of the John Lewis Group to promote the fashion and textile sector. Over the two day period we helped around 350 people to create a sewn product on our industrial flatbed machines and overlockers, with a further with 1,500 visitors stopping to view the stand and exhibits.

Contributing companies included Gledhills, Milliken Industries, Cookson & Glegg, John Spencer Textiles, Ian Mankin Textiles, Reed Medical Footwear, Panaz Textiles, Mallileus woven, Linzi Jay Bridal, Herbert Parkinson, The Senator Group and Lantex Homeware.