Peter Marsh, ex-FT Journalist and author of The New Industrial Revolution

Peter Marsh is a journalist, and lecturer and commentator on 21st century manufacturing. His best known book is “The New Industrial Revolution: Consumers, Globalization and the End of Mass Production”, published in 2012. From 1983 to 2013 Peter worked at the Financial Times where his most recent job was manufacturing editor.

Peter has a degree in chemistry from the University of Nottingham, and before the FT, Peter was employed as a journalist at the Luton Evening Post, Building Design magazine, and New Scientist.

In 2015, Peter started MadeHereNow, a website exploring the new world of manufacturing in Britain – 
amazing advances in science and technology with great career opportunities.

Peter is therefore perfectly qualified to chair our ‘Heritage versus Innovation’ panel on day one of the conference.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 9:50am Panel Discussion: ‘Heritage versus Innovation’

Ian Maclean, Managing Director, John Smedley

Ian Maclean is the 8th generation member of the family that owns John Smedley. He began working at the family business as a non-executive director in 2000, and became managing director in 2008.

Having started in 1784, John Smedley is the oldest continuously operating factory in the world. 400,000 garments are sold each year, with more that 60% exported to over 30 countries around the world. John Smedley is truly a ‘Made in Britain’ brand.

Ian will be discussing how his company has successfully made over 200 years of manufacturing heritage relevant to today’s market on our ‘Heritage versus Innovation’ panel on day one.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 9:50am Panel Discussion: ‘Heritage versus Innovation’

Emma Willis Shirts

Emma Willis MBE

Emma Willis, English shirt maker in London, trained at the Slade School of Art before starting her business in 1987, designing and making men’s luxury shirts, all made in England.

In 1999 she opened her elegant and intimate shop in Jermyn Street, and in 2010 her English shirt making factory opened in the centre of historic Gloucester. Her philosophy is to adhere to traditional English shirt making techniques, using luxurious Swiss and West Indian Sea Island Cottons.

Emma will be telling us all about her experiences of opening her Gloucestershire factory and the work she is doing to create a whole new generation of luxury shirtmakers.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 12:30 Panel: ‘Innovation Accelerator’

Simon Colbeck Marks and Spencer

Simon Colbeck, General Head of Innovation and Quality, Marks and Spencer

Simon Colbeck is General Merchandise Head of Innovation and Quality at Marks and Spencer.
Simon manages a team of technical experts who deliver innovation, quality assurance and sustainability into M&S products. Passionate about UK manufacture, Simon represents M&S on the board of the Lord Alliance National Textile Growth programme, supporting and evaluating prospective grant applications.
Simon also sits on the steering group of the British Fashion Council Positive Fashion programme which aims to support UK manufacturers working with UK design talent and brands.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 12:30 Panel: ‘Innovation Accelerator’

Guy Hills, Owner, Dashing Tweeds

Successful fashion photographer Guy Hills launched British brand Dashing Tweeds in 2006 with the talented head of Woven Textiles at Royal College of Art, Kirsty McDougall. Guy was looking to create a British high quality modern tweed that could be worn in the city. He also wanted to combine traditional sportswear with new designs and technical yarns.

Guy and Kirsty set up their weave design studio in East London, using the best mills in the country to create high luxury woven designs. With the cloth’s instant success amongst Savile Row tailors, the Dashing Tweeds Flagship store opened in 2014 in Mayfair, London

Today, Dashing Tweeds produce two fabric collections a year and the newly launched Ready To Wear label was first seen at London Collections Men for AW16.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 9:50am Panel Discussion: ‘Heritage versus Innovation’

Tim Walker, Consultant, Walsh & Blackhorse Lane Denim

Tim has worked with Britain’s only owned, designed and manufactured sports footwear brand, Walsh since 2012.  Initially trading from the Brick Lane and Spitalfields fashion markets to coincide with the Olympic games, Tim has continued to promote the brand at retail and trade shows, arranged collaborations with the progressive menswear labels of Universal Works and YMC, produced photoshoots and steered the brand to its Marks & Spencer, Best of British collaboration.

Tim has also curated a recent exhibition on the Ivy Style influence on Northamptonshire footwear for the British Footwear Association along with previous exhibitions at the Fashion & Textile Museum in London and the Northampton Shoe Museum.  Current projects include a Walsh collaboration with one of the World’s leading advertising agencies and retail consultancy for Blackhorse Lane Ateliers, London’s first major denim Brand for 40 years.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 9:50am Panel Discussion: ‘Heritage versus Innovation’

Kate Hills, Founder & CEO, Make it British / Meet the Manufacturer

Kate Hills is the founder and CEO of Make it British. Twenty years of working as a designer and buyer for brands such as Burberry and M&S and multiple product sourcing trips overseas prompted Kate to set up the Make it British website to help promote UK manufacturing and British-made brands. Now entering its 6th year, the website has gone from strength to strength, and Kate has appeared regularly on television and radio espousing her firm belief that manufacturing in the UK is thriving, cost-effective and sustainable.

Realising that there was a need for a trade show that brought together the best of British fashion and textile suppliers under one roof, she launched Meet the Manufacturer in 2014.

Kate will be opening the conference on day one with her thoughts on how UK manufacturing has changed in the five years since she launched Make it British.

Speaker schedule

Day One 9:30am – ‘UK Manufacturing – Five Years On’

Brendan McCormack, Commercial Director, English Fine Cottons / Culimeta Saveguard

After leaving college in 1985 Brendan joined the conglomerate Turner Newall where he worked with customers to develop viable replacements for asbestos textiles.  In 1993 he joined with business partner Stephen Shaughnessy to form Saveguard UK which specialised in manufacturing high temperature textiles and insulations.  The latter included adopting an ageing cotton system in Dukinfield to spin modern high performance fibres for protective clothing applications.

In 2005 the company created a joint venture with the German company Cuylits Holdings GmbH to form Culimeta-Saveguard Ltd.  The company has since expanded to become one of the world’s leading suppliers of insulations to the automotive industry and now employs nearly 250 people in the UK and has manufacturing sites in the USA, Italy and India.

In 2013 Culimeta Saveguard decided to explore the possibilities of satisfying a long standing ambition of the UK management to bring cotton spinning back to the North West of England.  This culminated in a £5 million investment in machinery and the creation of English Fine Cottons which will start production in July 2016.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 12:00am – Re-Establishing Cotton Spinning in Cottonopolis – “Now That’s a Yarn”

Hal Watts, CEO, UNMADE

UNMADE is a revolutionary knitwear company co-founded by Ben Alun-Jones, Kirsty Emery and Hal Watts, a dynamic trio who met while studying at the Royal College of Art.

Combining their backgrounds in textiles and technology, UNMADE has created a software platform for industrial knitting machines, allowing you to design a garment from scratch and essentially ‘print’ knitwear on demand. The idea was born through frustration at the fashion industry’s stagnant approach to mass-consumption and a desire to create bespoke, personalised knitwear, unique to each shopper.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 10:40am ‘Bringing mass-customisation to the UK knitwear industry’

Peter Needle, CEO & co-founder, Segura

At this year’s Meet the Manufacturer conference, Peter Needle, CEO and co-founder of Segura, will be speaking about the benefits of a transparent supply chain. As well as discussing some of the rewards and challenges of localised sourcing, Peter will demonstrate how British brands can map exactly where every component for their products comes from.

Peter will explain how real-time insights and effective supply chain management can help businesses to take positive steps to reduce risk, improve quality and introduce cost savings, allowing brands to really get the most from manufacturing in the UK.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 10:30am ‘Mapping the Supply Chain?’

Bill Macbeth OBE, Managing Director, Textile Centre of Excellence

Bill Macbeth OBE is the Managing Director of the Textile Centre of Excellence, a company that is dedicated to improving the skills and research base of textile and other manufacturing companies in England. The Centre has 95 member companies who manufacture locally and globally, supplying the world’s premier fashion houses and technical textiles markets.

From 2000 to 2003, Bill held the office of President of the European Regional Information Society Association (ERIS@), a company based in Brussels that works closely with regional governments and the European Commission to assist the take-up and implementation of new technologies. In 2011, Bill was elected to join the Board of the UK Fashion and Textiles Association, and represents the UK on the Euratex Director Generals’ Group in Brussels.

He is also a Director of the Kirklees Enterprise Foundation and a member of numerous charitable and social groups. In 2013 Bill was awarded the OBE in for services to Education and Skills.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 9:50am ‘Heritage versus Innovation’

Adam Mansell UKFT

Adam Mansell, CEO, UK Fashion & Textile Association

Having previously worked in the accountancy and publishing sectors, Adam Mansell joined the textile and clothing industry 20 years ago. Beginning as an Executive at the British Clothing Industry Association, he then went on to work for a number of trade bodies including the British Interior Textile Association, Silk Association of Great Britain, Home Laundering Consultative Council and British Apparel & Textile Confederation. Having represented all aspects of the fashion and textile supply chain, Adam has links to every part of the industry from design, fabric and component suppliers, wholesalers, brands, manufacturers and retail.

Along with his work at UKFT, Adam is a Director of Wulff Consultancy; a bespoke consultancy for the fashion and textile industry and has recently been elected as President of Ginetex, the organisation that owns the trademarked care labelling symbols. As of January 2016 Adam is also a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Framework Knitters.

Adam will be chairing our Innovation Accelerator session on day one.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 12:30pm ‘Innovation Accelerator’

Rosie Wolfenden MBE, MD & co-founder, Tatty Devine

Rosie Wolfenden MBE is Managing Director and co-founder of Tatty Devine – the go to brand for original, fun, acrylic statement jewellery. Rosie is responsible for the on-going success of the British jewellery brand.

Rosie studied Fine Art at Chelsea School of Art, where she met business partner Harriet Vine MBE. They set up Tatty Devine from London’s east end in 1999 and are proud that all their jewellery is still designed and handmade in Britain.

Over a decade of experience at the helm of a leading British brand means Rosie has become an inspiration for creative entrepreneurs. After being nominated for the Everywoman Businesswoman of the Year, Rosie became an ambassador for the Everywoman Network and a Titan of Industry at the School for Creative Startups. She has also shared her expertise at the Royal College of Art, British Library and built partnerships with the likes of Selfridges, Gilbert & George, Tate and the V&A.

It’s important to Rosie that the brand is fully independent and she runs Tatty Devine according to a strong set of values: manufacturing in Britain, the importance of originality, and promoting women. Almost all of the jewellery is laser cut and handmade in Tatty Devine’s own workshops, by a female team.

Rosie admires women and how driven they are to work in organisations they feel passionate about. She feels privileged to be managing a team of women who focus on collective goals by sharing information and creative ideas whilst maintaining their own individual ambition.

Along with Harriet, Rosie was awarded an MBE for her Services to the Fashion Industry in 2013.

Speaker schedule

Day One – 9:35am

Mike Stoll, Managing Director, Cooper & Stollbrand

Mike Stoll has nearly 50 years experience in the British garment manufacturing industry. He joined Waverly Weather coats in 1972 as a trainee machinist and worked on the factory floor until 1977 when he moved into an office-based role. He then started a design company called Candy Fashions and in 1983 moved into contract manufacturing under the company name Drizzle. In 1986 the company was renamed as Cooper & Stollbrand when Mike’s business partner left the business and the company secretary Cathy Cooper became a director. Cooper & Stollbrand is still operating today as a contract manufacturer based in Salford, Manchester

When his business partner retired in 2006 James Eden becamse involved in the business with Mike and launched the Private White brand, which is now Cooper and Stollbrands majority customer

Mike Stoll is a firm believer in not importing, both from a social and economic persepctive. He is committed to prove that British is Best and multiculturism can work well in the work place

Speaker schedule

Day Two – 10:05 Panel Discussion ‘Me & My Designer’

Nick Ashley, Creative Director, Private White V.C.

Nick Ashley was born in Gatwick Airport, taken up to Wales and brought up in in a tent by penniless ex-service parents, who were starting a textile print business called Laura Ashley. Having been educated in 13 different schools, he ended up at St. Martins studying fashion with Stephen Jones and John Galliano

Upon leaving college he worked for Manolo Blahnik, Kenzo, Tommy Nutter, English Vogue before joining the family business as creative director when he was 21. In the 15 years that he was creative director he helped to grow the business into 12 British factories and 500 global own-stores.

When his mother died Nick started his own business using British makers and selling across 10 own label stores in Japan, which he ran for 15 years, followed by a brief stint as head of menswear at Dunhill.

He is currently creative director of Private White.

Nick says of his career: ‘There is a recurring theme here, and that is British manufacturing, I am very passionate about it’.

Speaker schedule

Day Two – 10:05am ‘Me & My Manufacturer’

Sarah Watkinson-Yull, Creative Director, Yull Shoes

Sarah Watkinson-Yull started Yull in 2011 whilst at university in London. Yull received funding from the Prince’s Trust to set up manufacturing for high heels in the UK and is one of the only independent shoe brands manufacturing high heels in Britain.

When industry experts told her that it wasn’t possible to make high heels in the UK, she never gave up and is proud of her efforts to have made it happen and to change people’s mentalities.

Sarah hopes that Yull will do its part to bring skills back to the country and help balance the trade deficit by continuing to promote manufacturing in the UK.

She will be joined by her Manufacturer Jack Savva of Staff Shoes for our Me & My Manufacturer panel.

Speaker schedule

Day Two – 10:05am ‘Me & My Manufacturer’

Jack Savva, Director, Staffa Shoes

Jack started out in the footwear trade at 13 when he worked part-time after school in a footwear factory in Islington, North London. He has since spent nearly 50 years working in the industry, having owned his own upper closing business for many years.

In the last nine years he has specialised in making high-end shoes for designers from his factory in East London.

Sarah Watkinson-Yull is one of his customers, and together Sarah and Jack will explain why their designer/manufacturer partnership works so well.

Speaker schedule

Day Two – 10:05am ‘Me & My Manufacturer’

Katya Wildman, Bombshell

When television costume designer Katya Wildman couldn’t find the right dress for her curves, she went ahead and designed one… Vogue July 2009.
It is possible to create the desirable hourglass shape across all body types by creating balance within a dress. Katya wanted to create a dress that would become a woman’s ultimate secret weapon.
Designing for actresses and celebrities allowed her to explore techniques for balancing your shape and concealing the bits we don’t like by draping and shearing panels.
What sets Bombshell apart? Confidence. It’s integral to Katya’s design philosophy. Using the finest of fabrics and British manufacturers ensures she can look after every detail of every dress, every step of the way. Katya is proud to say that the Bombshell dress has become the ‘go to’ dress for many women.

Speaker schedule

Day Two – 12:05pm

Scott Ogden & Kelly Dawson, Co-founders, Dawson Denim

Dawson Denim is the result of 15 years experience working with Denim. Kelly Dawson and Scott Ogden design, cut and sew each product themselves, from their specialist workshop in Brighton on the South Coast of England.

Since 2012 they have worked towards building a collection of denim workwear using traditional techniques and integrity. Inspired by the past but with improvements for modern living. Their collection is functional and understated, designed with personal attention to detail.

The Dawson Denim range began with workwear aprons. These were inspired by original aprons used up until the 1960’s; it was the aprons that took the wear and tear not the clothes underneath.

They have expanded their range slowly since 2012 with Jackets, Jeans and bags. When you purchase a Dawson Denim product Kelly and Scott have personally tailored, each piece is one of a numbered run and in some cases very limited. It’s the whole package that’s important.

Speaker schedule

Day Two – 11:40am ‘Dawson Denim – British-made workwear’

Tamsin Lejeune, Founder, Ethical Fashion Forum and CEO,

Tamsin Lejeune is the Founder of the Ethical Fashion Forum (EFF) and the CEO of, a platform that helps fashion professionals to do business better.

For 10 years Tamsin has been building a global movement in the fashion industry, spanning 141 countries.  Through EFF, Tamsin has launched and grown a raft of initiatives including the world’s leading intelligence platform on fashion and sustainability, the premier database for sustainable fashion sourcing, and market-leading online trade events uniting hundreds of businesses.

In 2015, Tamsin was named by LinkedIn as the most engaged woman in UK Fashion and Retail.  

Speaker schedule

Day Two – 12:30pm ‘Designer’s Den’

Jenni Arksey, CEO, Goose Design

Goose Design, established in 2002, was the result of a new creative vision believing in a fundamental need for an external and influential driving force initially aimed at apparel brands that delivered fresh and innovative design solutions.

Jenni Arksey, co founder and CEO of Goose Design, gained a broad knowledge of experience working within global brands such as Nike, Levis and Burberry prior to forming Goose Design.

Since 2002, Goose has worked with over 60 influential global brands across a variety of projects. Ranging from Olympic innovation through to uniform design, celebrity license style guides, branding concepts and various lifestyle projects.

Speaker schedule

Day Two – 12:30pm ‘Designer’s Den’

Mustafa Fuat, Managing Director, Gosha London

Mustafa started as a professional football player in the mid-1970s, but unfortunately his career was cut short due to injury. He therefore changed direction, studied Braille, and worked for the RNIB transcribing books and examination papers for the blind. He enjoyed his time in this area, but the pay was difficult to live off, so he decided to go into catering and opened a restaurant in Greenwich. This was also a fantastic experience, but the late nights eventually became too much so he moved to the dry cleaning industry where he worked for 15 years.

In 1993 Mustafa was asked by a business associate to get involved in managing a fashion business and after working with them for a year found that he loved working in fashion. He researched the manufacturing side of the industry and realised that there was a need for good, reliable production teams. He set up Gosha London in 1995 with a vision of creating beautiful garments for high end fashion. He has a highly skilled and accomplished team working for him, who all share the constant desire to strive for perfection. Gosha London limited is now proudly celebrating 21 years producing garments of the highest quality for high end luxury womenswear, right here in glorious Britain and the fashion capital of the world.
“Fashion is not for philosophy, it’s for life!”

Speaker schedule

Day Two – 12:30pm ‘Designer’s Den’

Pete Schonbeck, Business Advisor & Consultant, London Small Business Centre & PRODUKTSCHÖN

Pete has over 25 years of experience within the fashion industry. He has designed, been a buyer, a product developer and merchandiser at all levels right up to Senior  Director for some of the most envied brands  in the creative industry such as Levi Strauss, Timberland, Tommy Hilfiger and Barbour.

After a roaring creative career, he joined forces with a business partner and Sir Paul Smith himself  to set up a menswear designer retail outlet that stocked key labels such as Paul Smith, Nicole Farhi, Mandarina Duck, Evisu, John Smedley, Duffer of St George, Joseph and 6876.

“All things creative float my boat, not only clothing, but interior design and architecture also. I love out of the box creative thinking to keep things evolving and to keep competitors on their toes.” When he’s not whipping entrepreneurs into shape (deep down he’s a softie really), you can usually find him in the Alps showing off his skiing skills, or out on his road bike in the Chiltern Hills.

Pete will be chairing our ‘Me & My Manufacturer’ panel on day two.

Speaker schedule

Day Two – 10:05am Panel: ‘Me & My Manufacturer’

Nayna Mcintosh

Nayna MacIntosh, Hope

Nayna’s twenty years of building retail brands, including being a member of the Management Board at M&S during Stuart Rose’s tenure saw her being named in the FTSE 100’s women to watch list. Having launched two of the UK’s major brands with George Davies: George at Asda in 1990 and Per Una in 2004, Nayna also has a great track record in establishing new businesses.
Her background set her in good stead to launch ‘Hope’, a brand targeting 40+ women in 2015, much of which is manufactured by skilled factories in the UK.

Nayna will be advising the audience on how she went about sourcing the factories for her new brand, as well as tips on how to bring a new venture to market.

Speaker schedule

Day Two – 10:50am ‘Creating Hope’