Art & Design students get industry ready at G.H.Hurt

The local knitwear manufacturer has been taking on placement students for 20 years from a number of Art & Design courses

Gillian Hurt, Amy Connor, Hannah Bartter-Clamp and Jasmine Farmer in the G.H.Hurt workshop
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Gillian Hurt, Amy Connor, Hannah Bartter-Clamp and Jasmine Farmer in the G.H.Hurt workshop

Students from a number of courses offered by NTU’s School of Art & Design are undertaking or have completed placements at G. H. Hurt & Son, a lace knitwear designer and manufacturer based in Chilwell. Ranging from a few weeks to full sandwich year placements, the students support various functions of the business whilst working at the company, receiving extensive training and guidance throughout.

Rooted in Nottingham’s rich textile heritage, G. H. Hurt & Son have been designing and manufacturing fine lace knitwear at their current site since 1912. We visited their site this September to meet some Art & Design students currently working there, and to meet the Director and her team.

Director Gillian Taylor is a fourth generation family member and great granddaughter to founder George Henry Hurt. She praised their relationship to the School of Art & Design, telling us: “We are delighted to be working with Nottingham Trent University and have been welcoming placement students from the BA (Hons) Fashion Knitwear Design and Knitted Textiles course for over 20 years, and more recently from other course areas.”

She continued: “Our clear vision enables us to provide valuable work experience for the students during their education, and it works both ways; the students are exceptional, and bring fresh thinking and ideas to the company, helping to produce new and exciting designs and ways of working. We empower them to push the boundaries.”

Photography alumna Elee and Fashion Marketing and Branding student Hannah collaborating in the photography studio
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Photography alumna Elee and Fashion Marketing and Branding student Hannah collaborating in the photography studio

We met BA (Hons) Photography alumna Elee Smith, who following a Graduate Summer Internship, has returned to work for the company on a part-time basis, whilst studying an NTU post-graduate course. She told us: “During my time at G. H. Hurt & Son, I have been extremely fortunate to be involved with and lead on multiple projects and campaigns throughout the year. My role as Content Marketing Assistant has enabled me to use my photography skills to produce content that is suitable for a multitude of different marketing projects. My recent MSc in Digital Marketing, studied at Nottingham Business School, has helped me to understand how the context of my photography can be used to build B2B and B2C relationships.”

She added: “G. H. Hurt & Son is a wonderful place to work. There are many opportunities for development, independent learning and to use cross-functional skills. My current role means I am able to combine photography with digital marketing, which has led to many positive outcomes.”

We also met BA (Hons) Fashion Marketing and Branding student Hannah Bartter-Clamp, who began working at G. H. Hurt & Son on a Spring Internship - as part of her course - then continued part-time through the summer, and will return to NTU this month for her final year of study. She explained: “It has been great to put my knowledge, developed over the last two years on my course, into practice. I have taken part in a variety of projects from running social media campaigns, and creating trade brochures on Adobe InDesign, to influencer marketing activities and helping with photography projects. The whole experience has given me a deeper and more rounded understanding of marketing and branding.”

Fashion Knitwear Design students Amy Connor and Jasmine Farmer
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Fashion Knitwear Design students Amy Connor and Jasmine Farmer

She continued: “Earlier in my placement, I was lucky enough to experience a global event, which put G. H. Hurt & Son in the media spotlight; one of their baby shawls was used to wrap Prince Louis as he was shown to the world following his birth. It was amazing to see how one event could have such a huge and positive impact on the company, particularly in terms of social media activity and press coverage.”

BA (Hons) Fashion Knitwear Design and Knitted Textiles students Amy Connor and Jasmine Farmer have similarly been working at G. H. Hurt & Son over the summer. Jasmine told us: “Whilst working here I have been shadowing the company’s head technician and designer, who has around 40 years’ experience working on the company’s specialist machinery. This has been such a valuable experience; these skills will really support me in my final year on the course at NTU, and I now feel confident and inspired to create part of my final collection on this specialist machinery. My ambition for the future is to run my own knitwear label, as whilst at university and out on placement, I have gained the skills I need to really progress with my own ideas.”

The School would like to thank G. H. Hurt & Son for their continued support, and look forward to hearing more success stories from future placement students.

Art & Design students get industry ready at G.H.Hurt

Published on 26 September 2018
  • Subject area: Art and design
  • Category: Culture; Current students; School of Art & Design

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