The Manunfacturing Institute logo

Make It UK Enterprise Challenge: Grand Final

30th October 2018

The Manufacturing Institute’s Make It Campaign has a clear, unwavering aim: to raise and nurture a new generation of talented UK manufacturers.

The Manufacturing Institute’s Make It Campaign has a clear, unwavering aim: to raise and nurture a new generation of talented UK manufacturers.

As part of Make It, students from across the North West participate in a series of challenges in various locations, putting their heads together to solve problems and come up with ideas.

Our Make It Campaign offers young people a real taste of what a prospective career in the industry is truly like – helping to enlighten students to the opportunities that await them when they leave school.

Make It 2017-2018 saw students progress through a series of heats. The winners earned themselves a spot at the Grand Final – which took place below Concorde at Manchester Airport’s Runway Visitor Park.

The final format

The compere for the day, Andrew “Bernie” Bernard, welcomed finalists by telling them all about the benefits of the Make It Campaign. He also highlighted why manufacturing is such an exciting industry to be a part of right now – both creatively and due to the sector’s role in green initiatives (like reducing plastic waste and curbing carbon emissions).

Bernie introduced the array of manufacturing brands sponsoring the Grand Final, including Tata Chemicals Europe, Plastipak, BAE Systems and McBride, before outlining the format for the day.

Working together in groups, the finalists all took turns to pitch ideas to a panel of judges – who picked a runner-up and overall winner of the Make It Campaign 2017-2018.

The final challenge

Standing in the shadow of Britain’s most famous aviation vehicle, students were tasked with creating their very own airline and plane for the Make It 2017-2018 Grand Final. Teachers, too, were split into teams to pitch their own ideas.

Judges explained they’d be factoring a variety of elements into their decision, including

design, quality, budget control, marketing and brand development. Pupils also had to confirm whether their airline would be for commercial, shipping or military purposes, as well as explaining which engine they’d use and how they would prepare the plane for flights.

Students were free to consult facilitators, judges and sponsors throughout, and were invited to climb on board Concorde for inspiration.

The final winners

Following a mightily impressive set of timed presentations, the judges admitted they had difficulty making a final decision.

The teams approached the task from a wide range of unexpected angles – including family-friendly flights and eco-friendly airlines.

Ultimately, Withington Girls’ School took second spot for their environmentally conscious design that included a great nod to Manchester’s manufacturing scene with its use of graphene.

The overall winners were The Maelor School for their inclusive airline concept that prioritised comfortable flying for those with anxiety and/or disabilities. All profits raised would go to help mental health charities.

The next chapter

Although Make It 2017-2018 drew to a close on 2nd October 2018, everyone in attendance could see that this was in fact just the beginning.

Year Nine pupils are at a crucial point in their education journey as they choose GCSE options, and they’ll have more incentive to pick subjects related to manufacturing after participating in these stimulating challenges.

The gender divide was also non-existent throughout Make It 2017-2018 – which suggests we may be seeing many more female manufacturers in the coming years.

The levels of quality and enthusiasm on display both in the Heats and Grand Final were incredibly high, and there’s a very real possibility that many of the teenagers there could end up becoming the next manufacturing leaders.

To learn more about getting involved with The Manufacturing Institute’s Make It Campaign, get in touch with our team today on +44 (0) 161 875 2525.


An Outlook For The UK Manufacturing Sector In 2019


Is Community The New Culture?


Meet Frank Hayden: The Manufacturing Institute’s Long-Standing Collaborator


Reality Check: The State Of UK Manufacturing


Manufacturing Champions Awards 2018


Improvements Your UK Manufacturing Business Should Be Looking At For 2019


How Your Business Can Benefit From Implementation Services


Reasons To Attend The Framework For Excellence Conference In March


Which Training Model Is Best For My Business?


How The UK Manufacturing Sector Is Changing



449, 449, shingo-logo@3x, shingo-logo@3x.png, 12710,,, Shingo logo - The Manufacturing Institute, 1, , , shingo-logo3x, inherit, 48, 2017-12-21 09:55:51, 2018-10-25 11:35:30, 0, image/png, image, png,, 281, 107, Array

The Manufacturing Institute are actively involved in the Shingo prize for excellence - an award widely considered to be the Nobel Prize of manufacturing. With our help, organisations can grow and develop to the point where they meet, and even surpass, Shingo prize criteria standards.



Fill out the form below to sign up to our newsletter!


Fill out the form below to book your course(s) via the phone!

Courses Selected: