‘MADE IN BRITAIN’ DANCEWEAR FOUNDER CALLS FOR MORE UK MANUFACTURERS AND SUPPORT FOR SKILLS AS ORDER BOOK GROWS
1st Position dancewear warns a lack of manufacturing capacity and skills in the UK is limiting growth
International Dance Supplies (IDS) which makes its best-selling 1st Position dancewear in the UK has put out a call for more producers – whilst warning that a shortage of skills and support for smaller UK manufacturers is limiting its growth potential. Producing over 220,000 leotards in the UK last year, the company has been on the hunt for more UK-based manufacturers with the capacity, and specialist skills to help meet the increased demand for its 1st Position ‘Made in Britain’ dancewear range.
Designed at its Devon headquarters and produced by hand-picked manufacturers in the UK, 1st Position dancewear is exported to over 55 countries across the world. Enjoying its highest-ever level of orders, sales to the US alone, increased by 20% last year.
Anne Walker, MBE, CEO of IDS and founder of 1st Position, said: “We’ve been making dancewear in the UK since 1978, and the success of our 1st Position range proves it really is possible to produce high quality, yet affordable garments in Britain. We’re now at a point where we could more than double our output and even re-shore some of our other ranges currently made overseas, back to the UK. But we’ve been stopped in our tracks – because we simply can’t find enough UK manufacturing partners to help produce them. “It’s not only us facing this barrier to growth. Demand for ‘Made in Britain’ means the wider manufacturing sector is in a great position to increase output and create thousands of new jobs, but we just haven’t got the skills or infrastructure in place. More needs to be done to help support smaller manufacturers to grow, bring back skills and encourage more young people into the industry.”
To view and purchase the 1st Position range visit http://www.danceandshop.com
For more information on 1st Position, visit http://www.1stposition.co.uk