Registered Charity No. 238076
The work of the Textile Committee is a very important part of the Weavers' Company’s role in maintaining and widening links with the textile industry. In the 21st century, the Company seeks to build on almost nine hundred years of involvement in the craft and manufacture of textiles, especially weaving, through its Textile education Fund.
The main aims and objectives of this fund are to encourage excellence in all spheres of the United Kingdom woven textile industry by identifying, supporting and nurturing exceptional students training for and young talent working within the industry, supporting centres of excellence in textile education and recognising and working with those who have made the most significant contribution to the industry.
The Textile Committee includes members of the Court and Livery with wide textile experience and recommends grants, scholarships and awards
, which are presented at an annual Awards Ceremony by distinguished people, who have included Her Royal Highness the Princess Royal, the Lord Mayor and the Chairmen of leading textile companies.
The Company Silver Medal. This is awarded to an individual or sometimes to two people, who it is felt have made an outstanding contribution to the weaving industry either in the field of technology, management, education, or in the craft of weaving.
The Silver Shuttle Award. First offered in 2008 seeks to honour the achievements of young talent within the UK woven textile industry and in so doing promote the industry. It is directed both at graduate and non-graduate employees from any sector or discipline, eg. Production, design, management or research.
Textile Colleges. In order to focus and help optimise its support for Universities or Colleges offering textile courses, it was decided in 2007 to identify six establishments across the UK, which it was felt were potential centres of excellence, to which the company’s grant giving could be directed. These are reviewed on a regular basis with new Colleges joining the scheme and others leaving.
Currently the Fund supports the following Colleges:
• Manchester University
• Huddersfield University
• Derby University
• Loughborough University
• Royal College of Art
• Central St. Martins College of Art and Design
Support for Education Award. The Company provides capital grants to its designated Colleges with the aim of helping weaving departments to upgrade or renew existing equipment, purchase new equipment, or enable their students to gain experience of modern technology. These grants also include the purchase of yarn to help students with their studies.
Entry to Work Scheme. The Company is particularly proud of its entry to work scheme, which has attracted financial support from other Livery Companies and which is designed to encourage UK Textile Companies to take on newly qualified textile students by making a contribution towards their first year’s salary.
The Company also supports through financial contributions a number of Textile Exhibitions which provide newly graduated textile designers with an opportunity to display their work within an international showcase. In addition a few donations are made in response to appeals from textile museums and other textile related causes.