Lynemouth prepares for Royal visit

Lynemouth will receive a Royal visit next week.

HRH The Earl of Wessex will visit Lynemouth Community Development Trust on Friday.

Prince Edward will hear about two social enterprises, Kenspeckle and WEAVE, who have built up trading links with top London department stores Selfridges and Hamleys.

He will meet Kenspeckle staff, who are working on commissions to supply Selfridges with chocolate and fudge, and at WEAVE he will be introduced to Ann Kidd and Emma Gallacher, who are using their sewing skills to create eye-catching uniforms for Hamleys, the world’s most famous toy store. Already they have made toy soldier uniforms, doll-like dresses and racing overalls for staff working in London, Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Russia.

In addition, the Prince will meet members of the trust board and representatives from Isos Housing, as well as staff at the Coastal Carvery café, now run by Lynemouth Day Centre, which has received free catering and serving equipment from the canteen at the former Alcan smelter.

Trust Chairman Bill Tarbit said: “We are both delighted and honoured that the Prince is coming to see for himself some of the quite remarkable things we are achieving at Lynemouth.

We are both delighted and honoured that the Prince is coming to see for himself some of the quite remarkable things we are achieving at Lynemouth.

Bill Tarbit Lynemouth Community Development Trust Chairman

“It is almost hard to believe that in such a small venture in a former mining village we have built up trading links with two of the most famous names in world retailing and that is something that we are immensely proud of.

“What our links with Selfridges and Hamleys clearly demonstrate is the quality of our work and products, and we are looking forward to showing the Prince just what we are achieving here.”

Kenspeckle, which takes its name from a Northumbrian word meaning ‘distinctive’, was set up six years ago and markets its home-made chocolates and fudge through local outlets and farmers’ markets. Last year it was offered the chance to sell its produce in Selfridges, where one of its biggest sellers is ‘edible coal’ made from cinder toffee dipped in chocolate and sprinkled with sugary dust.

WEAVE is a project set up to utilise the sewing skills of former ‘rag trade’ factory workers.