Creative challenge for fashion students aiming for the Great Yorkshire catwalk

Students are transforming men's suits into glamorous womenswear that will star on the catwalk at this year's Great Yorkshire Show.

John Warburton of St Leonards Hospice, with York College students Joe Welby, Millie Paver and Shannon Lickers as they begin work on a project creating garments which will be showcased on the catwalk at this summer's Great Yorkshire Show.

Some of the clothing created by York College students will be auctioned off at the end of the event’s annual fashion show to raise money for York’s St Leonard’s Hospice.

The project involves using suits that were originally donated to the hospice’s shopping outlets.

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A selection of the best creations will be modelled during England’s premier agricultural show on July 12-14 at the Great Yorkshire Showground in Harrogate.

Their eye-catching designs will feature along with collections from illustrious names, such as Max Mara and Cordings of Piccadilly.

The student project was thought up by John Warburton who spent 45 years working in the fashion and textile industry before becoming both a volunteer at St Leonard’s hospice’s Selby branch and chief steward of the Great Yorkshire Fashion Shows.

Mr Warburton said: “It is wonderful to see this hugely exciting initiative taking shape. It works on so many levels - bringing together the creativity of the students, the prestige of the Great Yorkshire Show and the platform it gives, as well as highlighting the work of the hospice.

“The catwalk shows are always immensely popular, attracting around 6,000 plus visitors - I can’t wait to see the students’ work featured there.”

The first year students, all aged 16-17, are studying the Extended Diploma in Fashion and Clothing. Their course finishes next year and is a stepping stone to higher education fashion courses or employment.

The 158th Great Yorkshire Show aims to showcase the best of British farming.