A small team of students at Bo’ness Academy scooped an impressive six awards at the Forth Valley Young Enterprise finals.
Rebecca Corner, Claire McConisky, Rowan Petrie, Amaara Sarwar, Jack McGregor, Charlie Argent, Alice Watt, Julia Speirs and Fraser Preston made up the team of young entrepreneurs who placed second overall.
The finals were the culmination of a year of hard work, which saw the group of youngsters work incredibly hard to produce fantastic products.
It all started back in August when the pupils selected the Young Enterprise as one of their subjects.
For a double period every week the students would meet under the watchful eye of their teacher, Carol McPeake, and design products to sell to the public.
Carol said: “In the beginning there was a little bit of time wasted. Everyone had ideas but once they got organised they were all so efficient and productive.”
For the first few weeks the pupils had to pitch their own ideas to the group and decide what type of business their young enterprise was going to be.
Amaara Sarwar (16) explained there was a great deal of creativity in the group. She said: “There was a lot of ideas but eventually Fraser suggested we should build wooden and natural products to sell.”
The group quickly agreed this was the way to go and the business, Pine and Twine, was created.
Company roles were then dished out amongst themselves and Fraser, due to his love of, and skill in, technical subjects, was head of manufacturing, Julia, who is very arty, was in charge of product design and Alice was the managing director of the company.
Alice said: “Everyone had a role or a job to do. We all helped build the products and everyone was amazing at selling them.”
The group made and designed bags, blocks with the company name on them and wooden hearts to sell. Julia said: “People were taking work home with them and staying after school just to make sure the products were built. Everyone was just so committed to the project.”
With products made the Pine and Twine group had to sell their stock and during the Christmas period a stall was set up in the Howgate shopping centre in Falkirk.
Fraser explained how everyone played their part in selling the stock. He said: “We would all help each other get the sale. It was a real team effort.”
The group then had to prepare a stall, make a presentation and go through an interview at the Forth Valley Young Enterprise finals in Stirling.
The hard work clearly paid off as the Pine and Twine group scooped the awards for most effective sales technique, best use of branding, most innovative business, best trade stand, outstanding achiever and best company report.
Alice said: “We were shocked to win so many prizes, but it was a nice feeling knowing all our hard work had paid off.”
The group did not win overall, but still left the finals with a positive mindset and were proud of their achievements.
The whole team said the year went better than expected with no arguments and no disasters - apart, that is, from a paint spill that left managing director Alice in need of new shoes!