Lamp that used to be an old bottle..and other bright ideas

Debbie Yates, 23, has been entered into the finals of a BBC3 programme after setting up her own business turning bottles into lamps and recycling other furniture and goods
Debbie Yates, 23, has been entered into the finals of a BBC3 programme after setting up her own business turning bottles into lamps and recycling other furniture and goods
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A Calderdale entrepreneur is bidding to make her TV debut after being selected to audition for a new BBC show.

Former North Halifax Grammar pupil Debbie Yates was selected to try out for BBC3s Be Your Own Boss.

The show is hosted by the co-founder of Innocent Smoothies Richard Reed, who is offering young business hopefuls a cut of up to £1million to help them get started in business.

In November last year Debbie, 23, from Greetland, set up her own business ‘Shabby Rescue’ to recycle unwanted furniture into trendy new items, including turning old bottles into lamps.

“I was trying to decorate my bedroom and couldn’t find anything in any of the shops that I liked, so I decided to make some of my own by recycling furniture,” she said.

“I’ve been collecting a range of stuff for quite a while and the first thing I made was lamps from milk bottles, then tables and chairs, and it has just gone on from there.”

Debbie applied to the show after hearing it advertised on radio.

“I sent in my application and my business plan to be on the show but then thought nothing more about it,” she said.

“When I was told I had made it through I really surprised but also absolutely delighted.”

Debbie is trying to get her business off the ground while working full time as a dental receptionist.

“I only have my weekends to work on the business because of my job but my boss has been very supportive.

“I’ve always wanted to work for myself and have my own business and this is a fantastic opportunity for me,” she said.

Debbie must now complete a task entirely unrelated to her business proposal to prove her entrepreneurial worth.

“We’ve been given £100 to spend on something not linked to our business plan to try and make as much money as possible.

“Then we go down to London to show how much money we’ve made and see who progresses through to the show.

With the jubilee in mind, Debbie will be making strawberry and rhubarb jam and aims to sell it at markets across Calderdale.

“It’s not necessarily about how much profit you make, it’s about showing initiative and what your ideas are like,” she said.

Debbie will be at Todmorden Market on Sunday between 9.30am and 4pm, and at the Piece Hall Market on June 2 between 10am and 4pm, before travelling to the Old Truman Brewery in Brick Lane, London, on June 4.