“My company is completely worthless… But it’s more likely to get funding than my education” – By @EllieDag

By Ellie Daghlian 



“My company is completely worthless… But it’s more likely to get funding than my education”


I’m petitioning the government for £13.8m.


Well, not for me exactly. For a ferry company I just started.


See, as you probably know, the government axed the Career Development Loan. A scheme open to anyone from 18-69 who wanted to improve their employability. For many courses it was the only source of funding available.


As of 2014 it had helped 304,000 people pursue the jobs they wanted. By January this year, when it closed, it must have been far more.


Now it’s gone, which doesn’t fill you with much hope re the financial state of our nation.


However. After some years trawling the internet, I have managed to find one bit of government which does still have some money.


In fact, the Minister for Transport, Mr Grayling, appears to have so much money at his disposal he had £13.8m spare to give to a ferry company without any ferries, Seaborne Freight.


That was just a drop in the ocean compared to the £26bn ‘Brexit War Chest’. Even more impressive given the last budget only set out £3bn for social housing. (It also allocated £20m more to potholes than to schools).


Anyway, sadly for Mr Grayling, the Seaborne deal fell through – not because of the lack of ferries, but because the Irish company backing it pulled out.


It left a pot of money behind. Destined for a ferry company without ferries.


Aha, I thought. I can start a ferry company without ferries.


And so I did. After much wrangling with PO Boxes and Companies House, I am the proud founder, director, secretary and guarantor for Another Company Without Ferries Ltd.

If Seaborne Freight was good enough for that cash, so are we.


Hence why I am petitioning the government for £13.8million. To replace the Career Development Loan.


The dream is to sit down with the  Education Skills and Funding Agency to work out the best way to use that money to improve access to the courses which, without the CDL, have no funding available to them.


— Dear Government, if you’re not going to invest in your citizen’s futures give me that money you were going to waste and I will do it —


Something along those lines.


So now. A call to the industry and to past, present and future SCA students. Because Marc has an incredible platform and I’d be an idiot not to use it.


There’s a decent chance this loan helped you or someone you know get through ad school, SCA or otherwise. And if we’re aiming for diversity losing it is only going to push us backwards.


We need to make some noise about this issue, and the seriously funky priorities that decide who does and doesn’t deserve money in this country.


So I have two things to ask of you.


  1. If this loan helped you, your story could help bring it back. I’d love to hear from you:


  1. Please please please please please do me the enormous honour of signing my petition:


We get this thing big enough and they’re going to have to discuss giving millions of pounds to a ferry company called Another Company Without Ferries. A real life episode of The Thick Of It. Written and directed by you.


Oh and one more thing. Follow, share, like, love and worship @gotnoferries on Twitter.


This is an industry of people who break rules, don’t take no for an answer and come up with really, really cool ways to solve problems.


That’s why I want to join. It’s also why I’m asking for your help.


Thank you,


E x


Sign the petition here:

Twitter: @gotnotferries #FuturesNotFerries



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