A number of UK textile groups have called for investment in skills and infrastructure to develop the local textile industry, as concerns around international sourcing increase.

The comments from three City of London Livery Companies come ahead of a conference in November which will look at the benefits of sourcing and manufacturing in the UK, the importance of British design, and the skills challenge facing the industry today.

Organised by The Clothworkers' Co, The Dyers' Co and The Weavers' Co, 'A New Dawn - Rebuilding UK textile manufacturing' will take place on 2 November in London.

Speakers include Business Secretary Vince Cable and fashion designer Sir Paul Smith, as well as textile industry retailers, manufacturers and experts.

Ahead of the conference, James Sugden, director of cashmere clothing firm Johnstons of Elgin, said: "Reports of the death of textile manufacturing in the UK are greatly exaggerated. There is a core of companies which are thriving, focused on the higher end of the market - but there is scope to do a lot more.

"We need to capitalise on the growing costs and complexities involved in sourcing overseas, and on consumers' increased concerns on environmental aspects and the cachet of 'Made in Britain'."