A MAKE-UP artist whose film and TV credits include Downton Abbey has launched MelVicMakeup Academy – a new training facility in Latchford.

Melanie Doyle, who has worked on a variety of big budget film and TV sets, has used £90,000 of finance from NatWest to buy and refurbish Victoria House on Knutsford Road, transforming it into a fit-for-purpose training centre.

MelVicMakeup Training Academy has won many awards and most recently in the Eva North West Business Awards for Training Academy of the North.

The new facility, which opened this month, has enough space to hold classes for up to five students at a time. It also features Hollywood mirrors, hand crafted lighting and a break out study space for students.

With more than 18 years of experience in training students in the art of make up for film, TV and fashion at higher education level, Melanie launched MelVicMakeup Academy in 2015 after realising there was little opportunity for students to gain on set experience.

MelVicMakeup Academy offers a range of short to longer, more intensive programmes. These include full-time and part-time courses accredited by awarding body VTCT in qualifications such as Level 2 and Level 3 media and fashion make-up courses.

To date Melanie has trained more than 300 students from a rented base. The new academy facility will enable her to double the number of students she teaches.

Melanie said: “Since opening MelVicMakeup Academy in 2015 I have been able to help even more students gain the qualifications and first-hand experience they need to get a step on the career ladder.

“As I was renting my previous space, I was increasingly investing into overheads and utilities, rather than equipment and facilities, which is what makes the real difference to the training I offer.

"With the funding from NatWest, I now own the property and have been able to transform it into an enjoyable training space.”

Cheryl Mills, relationship manager at NatWest said: “Melanie is passionate about offering training to students which really makes a difference, and we knew we wanted to help her offer the best facilities possible.

"The commercial loan will allow her to focus on her students and we can’t wait to see and hear about some of the successful careers that the academy will undoubtedly create.”