Words by Lord Young of Norwood Green.
Why did you sign up for the IPT Fellowship Programme and how did you first hear about it?
I joined the programme following a discussion with Baroness Prosser who persuaded me that it would be a worthwhile experience and it proved to be good advice!
What were your highlights during the IPT Fellowship Programme?
Highlights of the Fellowship programme were many and varied, the visit to the 3M factories including their research department and head office opened my eyes to the varied range of UK manufacturing. The recent visit to Honda in Swindon was a great example of a modern UK car manufacturer with a car coming off the production line every 69 seconds! The BASF visit to Germany was superbly organised with the company involving senior management in some very useful discussion sessions and the visit culminated with a fascinating tour of their Agricultural Research centre.
For me, the highlight of the Fellowship programme was the visit to a clothing manufacturer, and not for profit enterprise; Fashion Enter based in Harringay, London. It operated in a very diverse community and runs a superb training and apprenticeship programme as well as surviving in a highly competitive manufacturing environment because of the drive and commitment of the Chief Executive Jenny Holloway.
How has the IPT Fellowship Programme helped you in your role as a parliamentarian?
The Fellowship programme has given me a much better understanding of the challenges facing UK manufacturing and some of the service industries. It will enable me to participate in debated, committee work and assess proposed legislation with a much greater depth of knowledge – there is no substitute for hands on experience.
Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the IPT staff for the quality of the programme; their commitment and organising ability ensure a first-class experience.