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David Beckham opens London Fashion Week celebrating British menswear

Lauretta Roberts
07 June 2024

David Beckham, Ambassadorial President for the British Fashion Council, formally opened London Fashion Week this morning in celebration of British menswear as the event celebrates its 40th anniversary.

Beckham, along with British Fashion Council CEO Caroline Rush and Rebecca Allan of sponsor 1664 Blanc, addressed the assembled audience of industry figures and designers at the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA). The ICA is hosting an exhibition spotlighting three of the cultures that have impacted British fashion design: Black culture; South Asian Culture; and Queer Culture.

Beckham said: "I’m so pleased to be able to be here to support the designers and open London Fashion Week today – a special moment in the year that marks LFW’s 40th anniversary and celebrates culture, community and creativity.

"Fashion is such an important business for the UK and it’s in my role as Ambassadorial President of the BFC that we focus on boosting support globally for the UK fashion industry by raising the profile of designers and talent that the BFC nurture, encouraging British manufacturing and building networks and channels to support.

"I have been lucky enough to be part of and attend LFW for a number of years and it never fails to amaze me just how incredible the talent in London is and how lucky we are to have access to such a diverse mix of fashion businesses – from Savile Row tailors to sportswear, British fashion continues to influence and have an impact worldwide."

David Beckham attends the opening of London Fashion Week (Image: Genevieve Leah for British Fashion Council)

The British Fashion Council's Rush highlighted the challenges the industry faced and said she hoped the forthcoming General Election would provide an opportunity "for a refresh".

"We are world leaders culturally and creatively and can be stronger commercially. Through conversations with our network, the BFC has identified five priorities for a new government to support economic and social growth, employment and opportunity in the fashion sector. This has been sent to you in a letter from our brilliant BFC Chair David Pemsel and we ask you to engage and share over the coming weeks.

"London has always been the most innovative and creative fashion week and this June is no exception. This is not a normal fashion week. We wanted to create a cultural moment with the aim of igniting the imagination with a focus on storytelling. Over the next three days, we are spotlighting the breadth of British menswear and the storytelling that makes British menswear unique."

Events planned over the coming days include the exhibition at the ICA, a take-over of The Groucho Club on Sunday (9 June), as well as panel talks, presentations, catwalk shows and even run clubs and a pub quiz.

"This is not a normal Fashion Week. We wanted to create a cultural moment with the aim of igniting the imagination with a focus on storytelling. Over the next three days, we are spotlighting the breadth of the British menswear and the storytelling that makes British menswear unique," Rush explained.

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