LCF’s Royal Patron HRH The Countess of Wessex visited our Lime Grove campus last week and spent time meeting staff and students from across a range of courses. The visit was part of her 3-year patronage of the college and aimed to introduce The Countess to varied creative work produced here at LCF.
The Countess was welcomed to Lime Grove by Calum McKenzie, Dean of the School of Media & Communications and Professor Hilary Grainger, Dean of Quality Assurance and Academic Development. The tour began in Block D with a visit to a BA (Hons) Fashion Textiles: Knit workshop where third year students were working on their Final Major Projects. The Countess took time to speak to each student, asking them about their work and discussing both the machinery and hand knit techniques. The Countess, who is an accomplished seamstress, then showed some of her own creative skills, during the visit to the year 3 embroidery workshop, where she was set a task by BA (Hons) Fashion Textiles: Embroidery tutor Andy Kenny. The Countess explained to the students that she had a lot of experience using sewing machines but still quipped ‘Where’s the nearest A&E?’ when warned by Andy to keep her fingers safe from the needle.
The next stage in the visit saw The Countess meet 1st year BA (Hons) Costume for Performance students. The students, who are all in their first term at LCF, were creating corsets and The Countess took a great interest asking each student about their pieces. The visit then continued to a 1st year Intro to 3D Make Up class with BA (Hons) Hair, Make-up & Prosthetics for Performance where students were focussing on character realisation by producing a character based on their study of the play Ikuta by Zembo Motoyaso. As can be seen from the picture above The Countess took great delight in hearing the students, who were working in pairs, discuss their inspirations and techniques. The final stop in Block D was a visit to the Intro to 3D workshop where BA (Hons) 3D Effects for Performance & Fashion students were creating latex model heads and then painting and flocking their creations.
The group then moved on to Pigeons & Peacocks Lab in the main block. The Countess was met by BA (Hons) Fashion Illustration course leader Sue Dray and two 3rd year students Amy Gwynn and Rochelle Dwyer who presented her with their unique illustrations.
The tour concluded with Lime Grove site administrator Chris Tookey presenting Her Royal Highness with the latest issue of Pigeons & Peacocks and a jar of LCF’s Organic Fashion Honey, harvested from the Lime Grove bees. Upon being presented with the honey The Countess said ‘Oh great, we are a honey household. It’s lovely to have the College’s honey because bees are always so fashionable, wearing black and yellow.’
The visit was a resounding success with staff and students being wowed by The Countess’ warmth and the genuine interest she took in all of the College’s activities.
HRH The Countess of Wessex was appointed Royal Patron of LCF in March 2013. During the patronage The Countess will support all aspects of LCF life including championing the College’s commitment to Better Lives where fashion is used to drive change, build a sustainable future and improve well-being. The Lime Grove visit was the second time The Countess had visited LCF and she intends to visit each of the college’s six campuses during her patronage in order to understand and support the vast range of courses and talent at LCF.