The work of the Textile Committee is a very important part of the Weavers' Company’s role in maintaining and widening links with the textile industry. In the 21st century, the Company seeks to build on almost nine hundred years of involvement in the craft and manufacture of textiles, especially weaving.
The main aims and objectives are to encourage excellence in all spheres of the United Kingdom woven textile industry by identifying, supporting and nurturing exceptional students training for and young talent working within the industry, supporting centres of excellence in textile education and recognising and working with those who have made the most significant contribution to the industry.
The Textile Committee includes members of the Court and Livery with wide textile experience and recommends grants, scholarships and awards which are presented at an annual Awards Ceremony.
The Company Silver Medal
This is awarded to an individual who it is felt has made an outstanding contribution to the weaving industry either in the field of technology, management, education, or in the craft of weaving.
To focus and optimise its support for universities or colleges offering textile courses, the Company's grant giving is directed to a core group of colleges that is regularly reviewed. The following colleges are currently supported:
- Falmouth University
- Glasgow School of Art
- Heriot-Watt University
- Manchester Metropolitan University
- Nottingham Trent University
- University of Huddersfield
Textile Scholarship Awards
The Company awards scholarships to undergraduates in their final year of study and to postrgraduates from the designated colleges. Students must be a British subject studying a weave-related discipline and the application must be supported by the college.
Support for Education Awards
The Company provides capital grants to its designated colleges to help weave departments upgrade or renew existing equipment, to purchase new equipment, or to enable their students to gain experience of modern technology. These grants may also include the purchase of yarn to help students with their studies.
Entry to Work Scheme
The Company is particularly proud of its entry to work scheme, which has attracted financial support from other Livery Companies and which is designed to encourage UK Textile Companies to take on newly qualified textile students by making a contribution towards their salary costs.
The Company also supports, through financial contributions, a number of Textile Exhibitions which provide newly graduated textile designers with an opportunity to display their work within an international showcase. In addition a few donations are made in response to appeals from textile museums and other textile related causes.