A BUDDING fashion designer from Netherton has won a top prize in recognition of her talents.

Courtney Howes has been awarded the Roy Pedley Award, which was created in memory of the noted Dudley Rotarian, local magistrate and popular textiles expert who died in 2017.

The award was launched two years ago by Mr Pedley's family to honour his memory and to celebrate the talent of fashion, design and textiles students in the Black Country.

Mr Pedley's son Andrew said: “We are delighted that Courtney has won this year’s award and she has showcased her huge talent for design, colour and fashion. She has a big future ahead of her and as a family we are thrilled with the interest we see every year in the award from young people who aspire to have a career in the fashion sector.

“Dad was hugely popular across the Black Country but especially in Dudley and Tipton where he did so much for charity. Alongside his community work and his role as a magistrate, he also had a long career in the textiles industry. As I said back in 2017 when we launched the award with Dudley College and the town’s Rotary Club, as a family we were determined to leave a legacy – something to inspire young people in the textiles industry. The award is the perfect tribute to dad.”

Courtney, who studied fashion and textiles at Dudley College, has also been awarded a £500 bursary to help kickstart her career while she studies for a fashion degree at the University of Birmingham.

The 18-year-old also designs and makes clothes from her Netherton home.

She added: “It’s a big honour for me to be the second winner of the Roy Pedley Memorial Award. I am really pleased to have won and the bursary will also help me to keep developing my learning.”