On 8th July 2013 The Duke made two visits to innovative schools in the West Midlands to support their efforts to tackle youth unemployment in the region by providing a technical, career orientated, education with outstanding access to work experience and career guidance.
HRH opened the Goldmine Centre, a social enterprise hub and the home of Walsall Studio School. The Studio School is part of a wide ranging project to regenerate the area being led by The Vine Trust.
The Duke visited Vine’s Restaurant, a social enterprise created by The Vine Trust to provide training opportunities to young people, and was introduced to key players in the Walsall regeneration effort. HRH was updated on the history of the project to create a Social Enterprise Zone and Studio School and impressive achievements to-date.
The Duke then toured the Goldmine Centre, meeting soon-to-be students and teachers who were greatly looking forward to the start of the new term. HRH was introduced to business supporters – a key part of the Studio School Concept – who bring in project work for students to gain experience on real business problems.
Speaking after the visit, Vine Trust Chief Executive Kevin Davis said:
“We were very honoured to have His Royal Highness join us in our opening of our new Social Enterprise zone. This live, work learn and play space, will be a key driver to the regeneration of our area. I was impressed by the Duke’s passion for enterprise, and how our new Studio School Students can avail themselves of the opportunities presented by the zone’ s public, private and community sector partnership, what we call ‘the economy of together’…we look forward to a return visit when the students graduate.”