Students design gifts for foreign dignitaries

Five students have designed gifts to be given by the Government to foreign dignitaries attending international summits in the UK.

Silversmith Sue Watkins of the University of Central England designed the gift for the European Conference which opened last week. Wolverhampton University students glassmaker Allister Malcolm and fashion accessories designer Emily Jo Gibbs will design gifts for ASEM II to be held on 3-4 April. Gifts for the G8 Summit to be held in Birmingham on 15-17 May are by glassmaker Phil Atrill of Edinburgh School of Art and fashion accessories student Katy Lloyd of Nottingham Trent University.

The students each received 500 from Prime Minister Tony Blair at Downing Street last week. The budget set by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office for products was 140.

The five were chosen through a competition organised by the Business Design Centre, home of the New Designers annual student show, for the FCO. The initial idea came from Blair and his wife, Cherie, who wanted to give contemporary gifts.

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