How we've helped Vickie Heaney, print maker

Skills Hub case study

Business overview

Vickie Heaney is an artist and ornithologist, living and working on the Isles of Scilly. In addition to sketching birds and sea life from her studio, she works as a researcher in the Antarctic. She recently travelled as far as Margate for a print making and infographic courses to help her present findings from her research projects.

It’s useful to talk through your business, your plans. It makes you consider your strategy, important elements of your business you might not be brilliant at, maybe tax or finance.

Vickie

How we helped

Like most artists and islanders, Vickie is always looking for new ways to diversify her business. For Vickie, this means continuing to find and take-up training opportunities that allow her to adapt her current work or take it in a new direction all together. 

The Skills Hub has helped Vickie look at her business plans and assess the training she needs to get there. 

“It’s useful to talk through your business, your plans. It makes you consider your strategy, important elements of your business you might not be brilliant at, maybe tax or finance,” says Vickie.

While Vickie has found most of her training on her own accord, the Skills Hub provided the support to make it happen, like directing her to useful funding sources.

The types of courses she attends aren’t always cheap. She recently attended a five-day course on safety and evacuation theory for cruise ships based in Falmouth. While she could afford the classes, the travel and accommodation made it too expensive.  The Access to Travel Fund covered nearly £600 in travel costs, including accommodation in Cornwall. Vickie is now certified to work on cruise ships, leading bird tours around the world. 

As one of the first Scilly businesses to take-up the Access to Training fund, it’s interesting to understand why Vickie thinks other business owners might find barriers to reaching out to business support groups like the Skills Hub.

“Maybe they think it’s more difficult than it is, an administrative burden sort to speak. I’ve received support through many funding streams, some more complicated than others. But there was very little paperwork needed with the Skills Hub and they helped with all the necessary reports.”

Vickie with prints pegged up
Business name Vickie Heaney, print maker
Website https://vickieheaney.co.uk/
Contact number 0790 093 3683
Vickie Heaney feather logo