Future Huntingdonshire tycoons taste careers in enterprise

From left, Emily Turner, Tom Fletcher, and Sian Unwin, from Longsands Academy, with their cake makin

From left, Emily Turner, Tom Fletcher, and Sian Unwin, from Longsands Academy, with their cake making kits. Picture: HELEN DRAKE. - Credit: Archant

The business brains of tomorrow gathered to show off the fruits of their labour at the Huntingdonshire Young Enterprise Craft Fair.

Groups of students from the Huntingdonshire area, and some from Peterborough, had perhaps their first taste of being on the hard face of sales at All Saints’ Church, Huntingdon, on Saturday (December 6).

The pupils have been working with Young Enterprise since the beginning of the academic year towards developing their business ideas, and this was a chance to gain some real hands-on experience of selling their goods to visitors.

Graham Buck, deputy chairman of Young Enterprise Huntingdonshire, said that the process typically involves assisting young people aged from 15-17 to start, run, and if they wish, to close down a business.

He said: “The craft fair is usually their first opportunity to actually sell what they produce. They are quite astonishingly creative about some of the things they do.

“We use the term craft very loosely, it is basically anything that they have chosen to manufacture.”

Some of the pieces on offer included bee boxes, solar- powered LED lights made from jars, and Christmas trees made from pages of books which would otherwise have been pulped or scrapped.

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There were eight teams at the fair, with about 50 students in total. Schools were able to enter as many teams as they wished.

The next main events will involve entering their businesses in the Huntingdonshire, county, and national finals. Various awards are up for grabs, such as Business Person of the Year, Best Trade Stand and Most Innovative Idea.

He added: “It was simply giving them the experience of what it’s like to sell to the public. It is truly impressive how fast they move from a standing start. There are a couple each year who have an intuitive feel for business.

“I think the students find it enormously challenging on the one hand and enormously rewarding on the other hand.”