HUDDERSFIELD has taken a step closer to joining Milan and London as a centre for world-beating textile design.
A hothouse for the brightest and best of the region's fashion and design graduates is due to be finished next month.
The Design Incubator at the Textile Centre of Excellence in Leeds Road will then welcome its first intake of new designers to the state-of-the-art facilities.
Natalie Hurst, a graduate of Leeds University, and James Macdonald, who studied at Dewsbury College, have already booked their places in the incubator.
It offers unheard-of levels of support to selected young designers who want to start new businesses.
The scheme marries innovative talent from the region's universities and colleges with some of the best textile and clothing companies around.
Managing Director of the Centre of Excellence Bill Macbeth said: "This new facility provides a unique opportunity to bring together the region's world-class manufacturing businesses and the cream of our local design talent. Over the next few weeks more than 1,000 students will graduate from the region's universities and colleges in textile and fashion design. It's vital that we provide practical support to help our most talented designers to start up a business locally."
Applications are welcomed from any textile or fashion design graduate who has studied in Yorkshire and Humberside.
Two open days are being held for talented graduates about to finish university.
They take place at the centre next Tuesday and a week later on June 15.
Both begin at 4.30pm and finish at 6.30pm.