A group of young entrepreneurs are getting the chance to test out their products after being named the winners in a competition run by Kirklees Council.
While Huddersfield’s Andrew Tindall remains a contender in the fight to be named Lord Sugar’s Young Apprentice, six budding tycoons have already made the grade in the council’s Sugar Shops scheme.
The competition, which was timed to coincide with the BBC’s popular business competition, invited young people with fledgling business ideas to apply for a Sugar Shop – a free stall to run for a week at Huddersfield’s Queensgate Market in the run-up to Christmas.
The initiative was suggested by the council’s Young Employee Network to support young people just setting out in business and wanting to test their product ideas with out the risk of leasing premises.
Lucy Bye, 23, who chairs the network, said: “We realised that we’re fortunate to have secured regular jobs in the current climate, but many of our friends haven’t been so lucky.
“We started to think about what the council could do to help young people who might be considering setting up their own businesses and came up with the idea of Sugar Shops – inspired by Lord Sugar’s early entrepreneurial experiences.”
Each winner will trade for one week in the market’s former demonstration area – during the three busiest weeks of the trading year.
The first two Sugar Shops, House of Becca and Dezired Accessories – run by Rebecca Smith and Hailey Douglas respectively – have now opened for business selling clothing and a range of accessories.
They will be followed by Abubaker Rawat’s Toys 4 All and Trudy Collins’ women’s clothing business Punchin Trudy from December 8.
Finally, Rebecca Shaw’s handmade cards and stationery business Final Flourishes and Kate Nicol’s crochet items, branded Daisy Dares You, will take their places for a week from Friday December 14.
Clr Peter McBride, Kirklees cabinet lead member for investment and housing, said: “We’re keen to do all we can to help young people find alternative routes into the work place.
“This is a great opportunity for budding young entrepreneurs to set up a test shop in the Market in the run up to Christmas – and an experience which certainly didn’t do Alan Sugar any harm.”