Young business minds aim to be top of the shops in Leeds

The LEAP fair at the St Johns Centre, Leeds.
The LEAP fair at the St Johns Centre, Leeds.
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HUNDREDS of budding young entrepreneurs have been working hard to make sure they are top of the shops.

Around 350 pupils from across Yorkshire descended on the St John’s Centre in Leeds to sell hand-made products from t-shirts and hoodies to stationery and chocolates at a special fair.

The event was organised through LEAP – a charity that encourages young entrepreneurs.

Julie Brownrigg, co-founder and development manager at LEAP, said: “It is a very tough job market for young people starting out today and this experience gives them a taster of the skills and character traits they will need to succeed in the real world.

“This year we have 16 participating schools and a record 31 teams of children who have all set up and are running their own companies for one academic year.

“They are encountering real-life business challenges and utilising vital skills, such as problem-solving, decision-making and team work, which will help prepare them for the future, whether that be employment or university interviews.

“Some may even use this insight as a stepping-stone to starting their own business when they leave school.”

The Grammar School at Leeds, Priesthorpe School, Gateways and Swallow Hill Academy were just some of the schools that took part in the event on Saturday.

Speaking about the fair, Rebecca Bilclough, from the St John’s Centre, said: “We are delighted to host the teams of young people in centre.

“The products they are selling look fantastic.”

She added: “Who knows, one or more of these businesses may one day hit the high street for real.

“We wish all the students the very best of luck both for the future.”