From November 2019 to February 2020, Jigsaw Homes funded a 12-week sewing and costume project with women at Holy Trinity Church & Community Centre (HTCCC) in Ashton.

15 women worked with members of the Royal Exchange Theatre’s wardrobe team to develop their sewing skills and learning about the process of costume design and making for the stage.

This included sessions in our wardrobe department and at the Swan Street Costume Hire, helping to open up the theatre to new people and share what goes on behind the scenes to make our productions. The group have been working on the costumes for Wuthering Heights, attending a design meeting, creating their own designs and learning new sewing techniques and period styles.

Lucy Woodcock from the Wardrobe department has led the project:

“I have thoroughly enjoy working on this project. It’s been a pleasure to work with such lovely people. I really hope the ladies have found it as enjoyable as I have and have learnt new skills for the future”

Carl Kelsall HTCCC Centre and Project Manager:

“The project has been one of the highlights of the year for the women at Holy trinity Centre. The group have had an amazing time developing new skills interests and friendships, for some this has been their first theatre experience I have witnessed their enthusiasm and skills grow and development on a weekly basis. Friendships have been formed from a diverse group of people from many different cultures and backgrounds and it just goes to show that if we bring people together around a mutual interest we have far more in common than that that divides us”.

Project participants:

“I loved all the different opportunities to learn and get to know people – women who I would not usually meet – so it was worth every minute.”

“I really enjoyed it and always looked forward to coming to these sessions. I enjoyed working with the group which was really worth the experience, I learnt a lot from it and would want to take part in these kind of projects in future too.”

“I feel that I have learnt so many techniques. I feel it has bought us all close together by supporting each other”

“Excellent, once in a lifetime unique opportunity. It was a privilege to be a part of it.”