'The Little Bag of....' team at The Westmorland Shopping Centre, Kendal
Angela Slater
Daughter of a farmer and market gardener so have always had a connection with the outdoors, whether it was keeping animals or producing fruit, vegetables and cut flowers. Along with my work at Hayes Garden World I also have a smallholding, mainly breeding rare breed pigs. I gained an HND and BSc in Conservation and Environmental Land Management, as a result I am an ardent environmentalist and have a keen interest in environmentally friendly gardening. In my time at Hayes I worked for several years in the Outdoor Plant and Houseplant areas

The Future Of Lake District Business

Young entrepreneurs at the Lakes School launch 'The Little Bag of.....'

'The Little Bag of....' team at the Westmorland Shopping Centre, Kendal (pictured above)

Encouraging young entrepreneurs for the future is essential to the prosperity of the Lake District which is why Hayes Garden World are delighted to be stockists of ‘The Little Bag of The Lake District’. Making a break into the highly competitive tourist gift market comes ‘The Little Bag of….’, a business venture set up by students in the 6th form at The Lakes School. The venture is part of Young Enterprise, a national charity founded in 1962 with the aim of empowering young people and equipping them with the skills to become valuable members of the work-force, and therefore more employable when they leave the education system. The charity works with students from primary to university level, aided by parents, teachers, businesses and mentors. They have to initiate an idea for a business venture into reality; on the way learning to work as a team and everything that running a successful business entails. Running a successful business can unlock the potential of the students, develop their communication skills, build confidence, help with problem solving, increase their financial acumen and make them use their initiative.

'The Little Bag of ...' trade stand in the Westmorland Shopping Centre, Kendal

'The Little Bag of....' trade stand in the Westmorland Shopping Centre, Kendal

‘The Little Bag of….’ business consists of 17 members, all business A level students, of which 8 are directors; Evie Clark, Beth Storey, Denzil Henderson, Bella Duckworth, Ellie Spedding, Jessica Treeby, Victor Sicinski and Thomas Morris. Their ethos behind the business was for tourists to take home a small reminder of their holiday of everything that represents the Lake District.  As they have all been together since starting secondary school they already know each other’s strengths and weaknesses which is a huge advantage when it comes to building a successful team. The programme ends at the end of July 2017, but the team feel that as the product has had such a great response they will continue with the business, expanding into other fields.

The Little Bag of Wedding Favours using Laura Ashley fabric

'The Little Bag of Wedding Favours' using Laura Ashley fabric

They are sponsored by Lakeland Plastics with Richard Young, CEO of Camp Suisse, an outdoor and language learning holiday experience in Switzerland for young people, as their business advisor. They also have the support of Laura Ashley whose fabric they use for their Wedding Favour bags, which contain small mementos of the ‘big day’ customised to the couple’s own requirements. They are going to expand the business nationally into other tourist areas, such as Bath, Edinburgh, London, York; in fact there are endless opportunities for expansion. They recently had a trade stand in the Westmorland Shopping Centre in Kendal where they attracted a lot of business, not only with ‘The Little Bag of the Lake District’ but also an Easter bag and Wedding Favours. Previously they have tapped into the seasonal market and sold Christmas and Valentine’s Day bags, which was an enormous boost to the growth of the business. The Lake District bag encapsulates the area with a piece of Lake District slate, a Beatrix Potter sticker, a key-ring with a view of the Lakes and a small 40g bar of Kendal mintcake.

The Little Bag of  the Lake District contents

All the bags are handmade by the team using locally sourced materials and are currently being sold in Windermere, Bowness and Ambleside.