Clothing production has a long history in the Rhondda with the most successful being Alfred Polikoff (Wales) which was based in Ynyswen in the Rhondda. By 1989 the company name Polikoff was changed to Burberry and the Polikoff brand ended. Burberry continued at Ynyswen for the next 18 years before the decision was taken to close the factory in 2007 when 304 highly skilled workers lost their jobs.
Treorchy Sewing Enterprise was established in 2019 with the idea of bringing sewing back to Treorchy in the old Burberry site using ex-Burberry workers to achieve this. The vision is to create a small sewing factory that brings back sewing and the use of textiles to the Upper Rhondda Fawr.
They approached the fund because they had the chance to acquire a contract that would require another qualified machinist and some specialised equipment, even though they already employed four employees.
Pen y Cymoedd has given a grant of £25,258.40 for a year’s worth of capital and salary expenses. The position ought to be secure by the conclusion of that time frame.
“Treorchy Sewing Enterprise has worked with us to identify what they need to make a difference over the next 12 months, and we are proud to support this organisation. Not only will the funding help them develop the enterprise and grow earned income, but it will also directly create a new skilled job in the Rhondda valley. We wish them every success.” Kate Breeze, Executive Director of the Pen y Cymoedd Wind Farm Community Fund
“This is fantastic news, we can now move forward with our plans, onwards and upwards. Thank you Pen y Cymoedd for your continued support” – Theresa Parsell, TSE
TSE was initially supported by Welsh Government funding.