AN app developer has designs on bringing together some of East Lancashire's brightest young creative minds with potential customers.

Jawad Bhatti, 41, has always had an abiding interest and flair for interior design, which provided the spark for his creation, HomR.

A home ratings app, drawing in inspiration from around the world, he is looking to make the connection between the up-and-coming designers and homeowners.

He told the Telegraph: "Down the years I've built up a lot of experience, analysing trends and developing contacts.

"And personally I've come across some of the problems you can have in trying to achieve the look you're after.

"So I thought about developing an app which would match the two parties together for particular jobs, so people can find a quality solution."

The former Bolton Institute and Manchester Metropolitan University student, who lives in Blackburn, has taken his concept one step further.

He added: "Recently I've reached out to interior design students at Blackburn College, in the hope that they can become early adopters of the app.

"In this way we can generate some demand for their ideas when they eventually graduate and I can link up some talented designers before they become huge."

One of his themes, for the month of May, was offering useful advice on how to realise the potential of small bathrooms.

While some regal themes may accommodate the odd Louis XV mirror, a zen bathroom, complete with manila rope effects, might do the trick, or for the vain among us, a mirror-lined smallest room.

Jawad, who works as a project manager for Nelson-based Daisy Communications, os hoping to grow his HomR idea "organically" at first.

He said: "This is entirely self-funded so the key thing for me is to develop the app in bite-sized chunks."

The college link-up has already provided a useful platform for Jawad, who will have a stand, through his association, at the Festival of Making, being staged in Blackburn later this month.

His app can be downloaded by going online to or searching for HomR in app stores.

Meanwhile a fledgling app designer has won plaudits from the Royal Society of the Arts for her thoughtful venture.

Emma Sutcliffe, a former Accrington St Christopher's student from Burnley, came up with Travel-Ease while considering the challenges faced by young adults with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) on the road.

The Loughborough University industrial design graduate took on board research showing that busy transport hubs, with the potential for multiple interactions and the risk of sensory overload, often proved daunting for young travellers with an ASD.

And as being independently mobile was a clear social and employment advantage, Travel-Ease was configured to present consecutive short instructions for users, in an accessible format, to guide them through any complex journey.

Emma is confident the app, which comes with a parental add-on, so discrete checks can be made on a young person's progress, has wider potential.

Emma said: "Travel-ease is inclusive, it isn't targeted solely at young adults with an ASD. Its simplicity in communication of journey information will make public transport more usable for all."

Her work earned a £500 first prize in the Hidden Figures section of the RSA competition, where entrants were asked to design a way of breaking down physical or attitudinal barriers.