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Shoppers given a warm welcome at learners’ unique pop-up shops

If you’ve been doing your shopping in Newtown recently you’ll have noticed some unique and truly inspirational ‘pop-up’ shops have been drawing in the crowds. From 1 April to 9 April, learners from NPTC Group’s Newtown Campus took up a prominent position in the Ladywell Shopping Centre, where they were selling their wares as part of their Enterprise Week project.

Shoppers were welcomed to a range of stalls, each with unique goods including; inspirational gifts, sentimental keepsakes and environmentally friendly additions to the home.

Local AM Russell George and MP Glyn Davies visited the shops on Friday 4 April and offered the learners his support for this exciting venture, while Newtown Mayor, Rina Clark, was suitably impressed by the shops and made several purchases in support of the project.

Visiting shoppers were given a warm welcome and enjoyed the range of interesting, bespoke items on offer. Woolly Mutton offered some stylish fashion accessories with their upcycled clothes and greetings cards. Helping Hands were also on site promoting their service which provides help and advice for elderly, disabled or busy people unable to tidy up in the garden, clean, iron or get out to the shops. Undiscovered Artists were also wowing the crowds with a range of fine art items on offer.
Many of the stall-holders reported excellent sales, with Man Cakes doing so well they sold out of cakes! Tyfu Fyny, an organic food shop, had to re-stock, and Pick and Print baby clothing have had to re-stock due to fantastic sales. The Paws, who had previously specialised in sentimental keepsakes of family pets, soon learned to diversify, extending their range to include trinkets with photos of family and friends to increase their business.

In an event organised by the Mid Wales FE-HE Regional Hub, led by NPTC Group and comprising Aberystwyth University, Coleg Ceredigion and WEA South, the learners had an excellent hands-on opportunity of experiencing working in the local economy.

The Hub project is funded by the Welsh Government, which provides £4.4 million to a Youth Entrepreneurship project, which in itself is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund. This support has enabled learners to take part in a range of youth services and practical experiences which help to nurture and develop the entrepreneurs of the future!

The NPTC Group learners pulled out all the stops with a range of eye-catching stands which were lively and visited by lots of passing trade.

A number of local businesses and organisations supported the venture with representatives from Antur Teifi and Nat West, as well as Newtown Mayor, Rina Clark in attendance. Also offering expert assistance was Enterprise Mentor Ian Hogg, NPTC Group staff Richard Wilding and Rod Evans.

NPTC Group HE Head of School, Ian Millward was also on site to offer his enthusiastic support to the budding entrepreneurs. He said: “I want to congratulate you all on the establishment of the pop-up shop in Newtown. I thought the launch was great. It was busy and vibrant and the students were excellent ambassadors for the College. Thank you for all your hard work.”

Picture: Newtown Mayor, Rina Clark, offers her support to NPTC Group learners’ venture