The Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site has been successful in its ‘Great Place’ bid, securing funding of £1,285,800.
On the 16th of March, the East Midlands winning proposal entitled ‘Vital Valley: A creative future for Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site’ was announced as one of the 16 places to be awarded ‘Great Place’ funding. The bid, which was put forward by Derbyshire County Council, will be huge boost for the UNESCO site.
Adam Lathbury, Head of the County Council’s Conservation, Heritage and Design Service, said: “We were thrilled to hear the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site has been successful in its bid for Great Places funding.”
“The Great Places scheme now gives us an opportunity, through heritage and the arts, to enrich that offer, and help people locally, and from across the region, to identify with the Site, take pride in it and actively get involved with the next stage of its development.”
The Great Place Scheme was established to fund projects in areas where there is a commitment to embed arts, culture and heritage in local plans and decision-making. It is anticipated that in time the additional funding will lead to the wide range of social and economic benefits that arts, culture and heritage can achieve.
The Great Place Scheme, using funds raised by the National Lottery, will firstly be piloted in 16 locations across England. Funding comes from HLF and Arts Council England, each of which are contributing £10m for projects lasting up to three years. There will also be complementary support from other organisations where relevant, such as Historic England through its Heritage Action Zone initiative.
The funding comes as the Derwent Valleys Mills WHS celebrate their 15 year anniversary since the site was inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. The birth place of the modern factory system, which ushered in the industrial age, the Derwent Valley Mills is a 15-mile long site that stretches from Matlock to Derby.
Cllr Ellie Willcox, Chair of the World Heritage Site Steering Group, said: “This commits us to delivering 23 projects over three years, funded through a £1,285,800 grant plus match funding already identified.”
“We have a range of priorities which address audience development, business engagement, the built environment and sustainability. The Vital Valley projects directly address these in exciting ways, from advocacy programmes, research and training to creative commissioning schemes.”