A former journalist is putting pen to paper on a new writing career.
Angela Reed, from South Shields, has launched Creative Calligraphy, offering a bespoke handwriting service for wedding stationery and other special occasions.
Now the 32-year-old is offering local residents, the businesses and community groups the chance to benefit from her service.
The mum-of-two was encouraged to set up the business after speaking to an adviser from the North East Business and Innovation Centre (BIC), based in Wearfield, Sunderland.
She had previously worked as a reporter for Northeast Press – including the News Post Leader and News Guardian – but took voluntary redundancy earlier this year after almost 13 years with the company.
Angela said: “One of the last press releases I received as a journalist was about a self-employment event being held by the National Careers Service at Sunderland College.
“I went along with the intention of finding out about freelancing as a journalist, but at the back of my mind was an idea I had some years ago about doing something with my calligraphy skills.
“A representative from the BIC told me about the New Enterprise Allowance, a Government scheme that provides money and support to help you start your own business, and I thought it was too good an opportunity to miss.”
Angela worked with a mentor on her business plan, which had to be approved before she could start trading.
She said: “It has been a steep learning curve, but I’m thrilled with the way things have worked out and I’m delighted that I can now say I run my own business.
“It’s very exciting and I’ve had a number of orders already, each one of them different.
“I think calligraphy adds a lovely finishing touch to stationery for special occasions.
“The response has been really positive so far, from the wedding fairs I’ve exhibited at and through social media, so I’m hoping this could be the start of a whole new career for me.”
For more information about Creative Calligraphy, visit www.creative-calligraphy.co.uk, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07956 148937.