All made up and ready to go: site of world’s first factory to be redeveloped

Derby Museums has run extensive consultation around creating the Museum of the Making
Derby Museums has secured £12million from The National Lottery thanks to the confirmation of two separate awards to create The Museum of Making: £9.4m from HLF; and £2.5m from Arts Council England (ACE).

Derby Silk Mill, part of UNESCO’s Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site, will be redeveloped into an inspirational new museum.  Made in collaboration with the people of Derby, it will open in 2020 in time for tri-centenary celebrations of the Silk Mill which was the world’s first factory.

Jonathan Platt, Head of HLF East Midlands, said: “Derbyshire is synonymous with making of all kinds, from the textile industries of the past to today’s engineering pioneers. We applaud Derby Museums for its imaginative plans to tell the area’s compelling story through the redevelopment of this internationally important historic mill.  We are hugely grateful to National Lottery players who make our funding possible and we hope many of them will come to enjoy a day out at the Museum of Making once it’s open to the public.”

Celebrating Derby’s heritage

Derby Silk Mill will be revealed in its entirety for the first time, re-introducing manufacturing to the site and telling the story of Derby as a city of makers. It will provide opportunities for local people to learn new skills and raise the aspirations of future innovators and makers.

[quote=Wayne Hemingway, Designer and co-founder of the National Festival of Making]“Making is part of Britain’s DNA. It’s a story told through the people and the buildings"[/quote]

Wayne Hemingway, Designer and co-founder of the National Festival of Making, said: “Making is part of Britain’s DNA. It’s a story told through the people and the buildings but, as with towns and cities in the UK, it’s a story that is at risk if our young people decide against manufacturing careers and our industries shift their focus abroad. Now is the time to inspire a new generation to see what is possible through invention, innovation, skills and risk taking - the making and remaking of real and useful things." 

Extensive consultation

Developed through a period of public engagement, the latest consultation phase involved over 19,000 people who played a role in co-producing plans for the Museum of Making.

Derby City Council has given £4m towards the project and Rolls-Royce, whose largest site is in Derby, has gifted one of its iconic Trent aircraft engines to the museum. This addition to the city’s collection represents Derby’s 21st-century story of making and innovation. 

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