SUMPTUOUS gowns, elegant suits, stretch limos and fancy shoes - the school prom has become an important event in a teenager’s calendar over recent years.

The key scene in many a teen film, the school prom is an occasion to splash the cash and dress up to the nines. But what if you just do not have the money to kit yourself out for the big occasion?

Calne resident Kiara Lane thinks she may have an answer. The mother of two, who works at Tiny Bubbles Nursery and set up the Calne Children’s Clothes Exchange, is amassing a collection of prom dresses which can be borrowed by youngsters who might otherwise have nothing special to wear.

Kiara, 26, from Abberd Way, said: “The reason I started it was that I got my dress by winning a competition. I didn’t have to pay for it. I didn’t want to sell it, I wanted someone else to use it who was struggling.”

A former pupil of the John Bentley School, Kiara set up the local children’s clothes exchange so people could trade in outgrown clothes and take away larger ones.

When she shared her prom dress idea with friends and family, and then on social media, many people offered to donate their prom dresses for the cause.

“Now I have around 45 nice dresses, and another 20 that are a bit older.

“I got in contact with the John Bentley School, and maybe I can get other schools involved, then we can loan the dresses out to people who need them. After they can get them cleaned then give them back.”

Kiara’s next step is to go to her local school prom fair, to share news about her scheme and display the dresses.

She said prom dresses could cost in the region of £100 to £400.

“Some of the dresses I have collected are really amazing,” she said.

“If this works out, I could look into getting suits for the boys. That’s possible for next year.

“This time I also have donations of jewellery and shoes.”