Verity Harris's dress, centre, will be on sale in M & S from mid-September.

Look out for dress designed by former UCTC student at M & S

Young designer and former Uckfield Community Technology College student Verity Harris has won an internal design competition at M & S and her dress will be on sale in shops and online from mid-September.


Verity Harris’ winning dress. The fabric was inspired by designs on the walls of Charleston Farmhouse in Sussex.

Verity, who went from UCTC to Kingston University, has been working for M & S for more than two years.

“I started with work experience for two weeks but didn’t leave. I just kept turning up and after three months was given a job,” she told

She spent time as an assistant designer working for the store’s Classic and Indigo brands before joining the Autograph line which uses more luxurious fabrics and is most ‘on-trend’.

Verity added: “Lead times are shorter and we work faster, reacting quickly to what is on the catwalks.”

Internal design competitions held at M & S make young designers think about their own brand and Verity was delighted to have won the latest with a dress where the fabric was inspired by designs on the walls at Charleston Farmhouse, the Sussex home and country meeting place for writers, painters and intellectuals of the Bloomsbury group.

The dress will be sold under the Limited Edition younger brand banner so look out for it appearing in September.

Verity was one of 80 former UCTC students, working successfully in creative industries, who contributed to an art exhibition held at the college last weekend as it celebrated its 60th anniversary.

Others taking part included jewellery designer Lynne Robinson, bespoke womenswear designer Lisa Redman, animal portrait artist Richart Pettitt, silversmith Gemma Main, photographer Joe Morley, and florist Charlotte Smith.

Verity Harris, 24, a former student at UCTC, now a designer at Marks & Spencer, contributed to the art exhibition.

Verity Harris, 24, a former student at UCTC, now a designer at M & S, is pictured with some of her work at a college exhibition.

There’s more about the UCTC Birthday Bash here: Snakes, chickens and works of art at UCTC Birthday Bash.

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