Come along to June’s NCTN event

Northern Clothing and Textile Network Event

Northern Design Centre (Gateshead) - Wednesday 14th June 9am-12pm


Join us in June for another brilliant Northern Clothing and Textile Network event. We have another line up of fantastic speakers with years of expertise in the clothing and textile industries, who will be talking about some of the latest cutting-edge technologies and exciting developments that are shaping the future of the sector. There will, of course, be plenty of time to ask questions, network and make connections.

Speakers: Kate Hills from Make it British, Simon Middleton from Harris Tweed Authority and Noelle Hatley from the Manchester Fashion Institute




Kate Hills, Founder and CEO of Make it British
After 20 years of working as a designer and buyer for brands such as Burberry and M&S and multiple product sourcing trips overseas, Kate set up the Make it British website to promote UK manufacturing and British-made brands. Kate appears regularly on television and radio espousing her firm belief that manufacturing in the UK is thriving, cost-effective and sustainable.
In 2014 Kate launched Meet the Manufacturer, an event that brings together the best of British manufacturers with buyers and designers looking to have their products made in Britain.

Simon Middleton, Brand Adviser to Harris Tweed Authority
Simon was founder of the Shackleton menswear, lifestyle and experience brand: producing made-in-Britain products inspired by the Antarctic explorer Ernest Shackleton. Having built the Shackleton brand, Simon left it under new management in September 2016 and is currently providing brand strategy consultancy to clients including Harris Tweed Authority.
Simon was also one of the UK’s best known independent brand strategy advisers, and has worked with high profile clients including: British Airways, Aviva, Pret A Manger, Norfolk Broads National Park, World Vision and many more.
Simon is author of three branding, marketing and personal-development books. His first book 'Build A Brand In 30 Days'​ (Capstone) is an Amazon No.1 bestseller in its category and was described as "invaluable"​ by Director magazine.
He has appeared on CNN, Bloomberg, Sky, Five and BBC (Today, Breakfast, BBC News, Newsnight) as an expert brand and enterprise commentator.

Noelle Hatley, Lecturer, Manchester Fashion Institute, Manchester Metropolitan University
Noelle has many years experience across a number of disciplines in the fashion industry leading to her current role as lecturer at MMU's Fashion Institute. She has held positions with various suppliers and worked as a designer, before moving into account management. She worked with a number of high street retailers before becoming a retail buyer. Most recently, following visits to factories in the UK and the Far East, Noelle has developed a broad understanding of patterns, garment construction and costing. Her roles have varied, but her love of the industry, clothes and the people within it remains.



A little about us
The Northern Clothing & Textile Network is a collaboration between David Reay and Design Network North

David Reay has 35 years of experience in the clothing and textile industry, and has held senior posts with J Barbour & Sons, Jockey International and many other well-known international brands. David hails from the North East of England and is committed to furthering the renaissance of the clothing and textile industry in the North.

Design Network North, a project delivered by RTC North, was established in 2007 with the aim of increasing the contribution that design makes to the economy. They firmly believe that great design can improve any product, service or business. They support local businesses and their design projects in a variety of ways, through funding, workshops and one-to-one support.



‘Designing Better Business’ is part funded by European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020