October 2020

Writers' newsletter

Our community poem Ticket to Hope with poet Helen Mort is starting to take shape. A big thank you to everyone who has contributed, we will update you on progress in the coming weeks.

Joanna Courtney is offering two workshops in November on writing historical fictionand plotting a novel via Zoom. There are now only a handful of places left on 4th November workshop.

Hallowe'en Session at Derby Market Place cancelled

Owing to both members of The Lost Boys having to stay in quarantine until early November, Derby City Council’s Derby LIVE team has regretfully taken the decision to cancel the Hallowe’en Session and Quiz Night-mare, which was due to happen this Sat, 31 Oct.

We have been unable to find an alternative compère who could meet the expectations set by The Lost Boys, with their own inimitable style and humour, and feel the evening would not be the same without them.

Dronfield Hall Barn To Strengthen Ties With Local Business Community

A National Lottery Heritage Fund grant has been awarded to the Dronfield Heritage Trust for work on a campaign to attract more commercial users to Dronfield Hall Barn.

The High Street heritage building is home to a wide range of arts, cultural and community events, as well as having an outdoor and indoor coffee shop.

Songs of Derbyshire - "County Fair" the new album from The Amber Band

Derbyshire Myths, Legends and History : Amber Band records Derbyshire’s rich heritage in their new album

Derbyshire’s remarkable and colourful history is the inspiration behind the new album from one of the county’s top bands. An unexpected benefit of lockdown was the opportunity the band had to research and write songs about our County.

Making Festive Derby merry and bright for Christmas

Christmas is coming, and Derby City Council is working with partners to transform the city into Festive Derby, a bright and attractive place to visit in the run-up to the holiday season.

This year, while there won’t be the usual large-scale events to draw crowds into the city centre, there will be Christmas lights and two trails to follow – Window Wonderland and an Elf Trail - with surprises and delights to discover on street corners and in shop windows.

Working on a Window Wonderland

Plans are underway to transform shop windows on the streets of Derby city centre ready for Christmas, creating an outdoor festive trail for visitors to explore while they browse and shop safely.

Window Wonderland is returning to the city centre, with businesses invited to decorate their shop windows to bring some seasonal cheer to Derby and be in with the chance of winning up to £250. Anything goes when it comes to choosing decorations – although this year the display will include a Christmas ‘rainbow’ to thank NHS and key workers during the holiday period.

Derby Museums celebrates extension of its Endowment Challenge

Derby Museums is delighted to share the news that the National Lottery Heritage Fund has generously agreed to extend the Derby Museums £1m Endowment challenge for a further 12 months until 30 September 2022.

Derby Museums is one of a small number of heritage organisations that has been awarded a grant of up to £1m by the National Lottery to help sustain its long term future. Every year it costs £1.8 million to run its museums, conserve the collections and put on an exciting programme of activities, exhibitions, talks and events.

Timber 2021 programme announcement





Derby's favourite book is revealed

The results of Derby Libraries’ public vote to find the city’s favourite book are in – and the winner is the classic American novel, To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee.

Readers were asked to nominate their favourite adult fiction book, and the results show how personal books are. Classic novels old and modern and more recent works feature on the list, along with stories considered classics of their genre and two books by Derbyshire writers.

Top things to do with In Derby this Half Term

This October, In Derby has plenty on offer for families to fill up their October Half Term Holidays. From Saturday 24 October to Sunday 1 November, why not try some of our ideas below; there is something for everyone!

Hubbub Theatre Company and Déda Awarded lifeline grants from Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund

Hubbub Theatre Company and Déda, who share the same building on Chapel Street in Derby, have received funding as part of the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund (CRF). Hubbub Theatre Company has been awarded £81,051 and Déda has received £202,000. The Cultural Recovery Fund aims to help face the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic and to ensure organisations have a sustainable future.

Local Charity Ambassador Recognised With City Award

A 19-year-old girl who has survived child exploitation and is now an ambassador for specialist local charity Safe and Sound has been recognised at the second annual Derby Youth Awards.

Louise Murphy-Fairclough has been presented with the Inspirational Young Person Award in the awards programme organised by Sporting Communities and sponsored by Derby City Council.

Wathall’s Shortlisted For Two Regional Awards

Wathall’s, which is Derby’s longest established independent funeral directors, has been shortlisted for two prestigious regional awards.

Helen Wathall MBE is the fifth generation of her family to run the company which has been established since 1858 and now has branches in Ashbourne, Derby, Alvaston, Borrowash and Burton. She is one of the few women to lead a funeral director business in the UK and has reached the final of the Institute of Directors’ Midlands business awards in the Family Business category.

Good news from Buxton International Festival!

Dear All,

Autumn has arrived in spectacular style to Buxton, lighting up the twon with colour and bringing wonderful news for the Festival.

You will be pleased to know that the Buxton International Festival was awarded £101,895 from the Culture Recovery Fund which enables us to continue with our Outreach work in 2021 and ensure our financial stability during the pandemic.

Reacting to this week's announcement CEO Michael Williams said:

HSG shortlisted for business award

Washroom services and water conservation specialists HSG have been shortlisted for the East Midlands Chamber’s Derbyshire Business Awards.

HSG nominated its technical team for the ‘commitment to people development’ category of the prestigious awards which will be announced at a virtual ceremony on Thursday December 3.

The technical team is responsible for installing and servicing HSG’s Ureco system for which the company received The Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Innovation in 2018.

Sinfonia Viva Pledges Support To Freelance Family Following Grant Announcement

Grammy-nominated Sinfonia Viva, which is based in Derby and the only professional orchestra in the East Midlands, has secured support as part of the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund (CRF).

The £72,123 grant, announced today (Saturday October 17) by the Culture Secretary, will enable the Orchestra to secure its future and the livelihoods of freelance artists that it works with by developing two key areas of its work onto digital platforms – concert giving and creative outreach programmes.

Festival Recognition For DCG Student

An Art & Design student at Derby College Group’s Joseph Wright Centre has won a £500 prize from the organisers of Melbourne Festival in Derbyshire and an invitation to stage an exhibition at next year’s event.

Spire Writes October special: Alan Buckley & John Mills, 28 October

Join this special online version of Spire Writes, Chesterfield’s vibrant spoken word night!

This event is a Zoom spectacular, featuring open mic and not one but two guest poets.

Our guest readers will be performing work from their brand new, brilliant collections, both published since the lockdown: ‘Touched’ by Alan Buckley and ‘No Guiding Star’ by John Mills. Your hosts are Helen Mort and Bob Roberts.

Let Sleeping Dragons Lie with the Big Family Read

This autumn, join Derby Libraries for our Big Family Read. Taking place until 30 November 2020, you can rediscover the joy of reading and encourage all of your family to join in too. Enjoy reading together again and talking about all the great books you have read.

Folk Music and Hallowe’en thrills at Derby Market Place

More entertainment and a second market has been confirmed for Derby Market Place in the coming weeks, after the first Autumn Sessions brought live themed music to the city centre alfresco venue last weekend.

As the weather cools, heating has now been introduced in the chalets around the edge, and early booking is advisable as these tend to sell first. But even though you may have to wrap up warmer for the outdoor picnic tables, you are closer to the stage to enjoy what’s on offer.

Derby Folk Festival 2020 at Home goes global

Derby Folk Festival at Home has been watched by viewers all over the world since it went live on 2nd October. From the USA and Canada, to Ireland, Denmark and Australia, Derby’s homegrown festival has had truly global reach this year.

Derby Book Festival announces first ‘live’ event for 2020

Derby Book Festival organisers announce today their first ‘live’ children’s event at Déda on Tuesday 27 October. They will hold three sessions of a fun, interactive Collage Workshop with illustrator, Jane Porter for ages 5 – 8 years. Jane is the illustrator of Brian The Brave (written by Paul Stewart), winner of the 2020 Derby Children’s Book Award, sponsored by businesswoman Deborah Fern, which was announced in May.

Art from Ruth Gray

Discovery Days Film

As promised last week I would share the link to the Discovery Days film I made for Derwent Valley Mills.

Chapel Arts - Newsletter

6th Annual Short Story Competition
Judge: Mark Henderson, local author and storyteller
Sponsors: Fred Pickering and Mark Henderson

Closing date: February 14th 2021

Title - Blue

There will be three age categories, judged separately: Junior school (7-11 years), secondary school (11-16years), and adult (over 16 years).

Writing for Wellbeing Workshops and Reading for Wellbeing Sessions

Derbyshire author Leonie Martin is offering a choice of two NOVEMBER dates on Zoom for her latest online Writing for Wellbeing workshop on the theme of HARMONY. Both workshops will include the same engaging writing activities and an opportunity to share your work within a safe and relaxing ‘virtual’ space. You’ll need access to Zoom along with writing materials. Early booking is advised as the number of places has been reduced to suit the online environment.

Mainframe Newsletter - October 2020

Wow! What a week of amazing announcements its been here at Mainframe.

From diagnostic sessions to CreativeMornings to training to the market and of course the Awards - hopefully we've got your creative needs covered! That said, we're aleady planning more new and exciting offers for 2021 so watch this space...

A Year in the Dark Peak

Our next exhibitions opens on Saturday 17 October with over 20 new paintings of the Dark Peak by Kristen Baggaley. Click on the image to view the catalogue.
If you'd like a printed copy of the catalogue, let us know at info@gallerytop.co.uk or call us on 01629 735580

Artcore October Newsletter

'Here' is where we stand now. 25 years and one global pandemic later 'Here' is the beginning of a new normal. Artcore celebrates a great milestone this year and on September 25th 2020, after 6 months of being closed, we were able to open our doors once again to the public and celebrate this occasion with a very fitting exhibition.

Wathall’s Supports Young Footballers’ Return To The Pitch

Family-owned Wathall’s funeral directors, which has branches in Ashbourne, Derby, Alvaston, Borrowash and Burton, has helped a youth football team return to competitive
sports by sponsoring their new kit.

Albert Village Junior Football Club’s under-12’s Harriers team plays in the Burton Junior Football League is now sporting the new kit at matches based at local sports grounds.

Hazelwood’s world mappers help Lubrizol hit its global volunteering target

Staff at a Belper firm helped their company achieve its volunteering total for the year when they carried out potentially life-saving work to help rescue teams operating in remote areas - without even leaving their desks. Fourteen workers at Lubrizol’s UK headquarters in Hazelwood gave up their day to help others by participating in the Red Cross’s Missing Maps project, a worldwide initiative designed to update free online maps by drawing in buildings, roads and natural features.



The wonderful poet Helen Mort (former Derbyshire Poet Laureate) is writing a community poem called Ticket to Hope. She is looking for people who live, work or study in Derbyshire, of all ages, to contribute, and is looking for lots of ideas to weave into and to inspire the poem. Derbyshire is a county with hope in it, and that’s quite literal – with the beautiful Hope Valley and
the train towards Edale and the Dark Peak, where passengers ask for a ‘ticket to Hope’.

Poetry Evening with Sophie Hannah

Spend the evening with crime writer and poet Sophie Hannah at ‘Agatha, Poirot and Me’ on the evening of 27th October.

For tickets and more information  about this Zoom event please visit

Tales of Derby Women Past

Spoken word pieces by She Speaks UK poets
Friday 9th October 2020 17:30 - 18:15

Free, no need to book

Join us for the live launch of ‘Tales of Derby Women Past’, spoken word pieces by She Speaks UK poets, created exclusively for the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site online Discovery Days Festival 2020. Six poets working in collaboration with She Speaks UK, have taken inspiration from Derby’s rich heritage to create spoken word pieces that highlight women’s stories from history.

Keep up with Dronfield Hall Barn this autumn

Upcoming Events:


Virtual Artisan & Producers' Market:

Make sure you support our latest Virtual Market, and don't miss out on a new botanical illustration course!

In these challeneging times, we're disappointed that we're unable to hold our Artisan & Producers' market this September as was originally planned. But thanks to the magic of the internetm you can still support some of our regular stallholders in our "Virtual Marquee".

Claim £1000 in funding to support your recruitment, with the help of the University of Derby

We understand that this can be an uncertain time to recruit, and so to ease those concerns, the University of Derby can support Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire SMEs with £1000 support funding if they recruit any individual that has graduated within the last 3 years.

That's not all, the UoD team will handle all of the role promotion, application sifting, and shortlisting free of charge, along with providing value added on-boarding support.

Derby Book Festival celebrates National Poetry Day

1 October marks National Poetry Day and Derby Book Festival’s Shared Reading programme will celebrate the joy that poetry brings to our lives. Nationally, there has been a rise in enthusiasm for poetry, particularly online, over the lockdown period.  On National Poetry Day the Shared Reading Co-ordinators plan to run a range of activities, both online and in the community.

The Hannells Darley Park Concert at Home goes national

London, Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds – The Hannells Darley Park Concert at Home was a truly national event this year.

After the pandemic put a stop to plans for this year’s live concert, a new programme was broadcast simultaneously on BBC Radio Derby, BBC Sounds and BBC iPlayer which blended video footage of the 2019 concert with new recordings by Sinfonia Viva’s 7-piece cabaret band, led by conductor James Holmes and featuring vocalist Andy Quinn, and Derby Jazz.

Buxton Puppets on a World Stage

In September, 4 metre tall puppets from a Buxton project have been seen on TV screens across the world
If you went down to the woods a few weeks ago, you might have seen something very strange among the trees of Buxton Country Park as two tall tree puppets stepped out from behind their trees and waltzed slowly to the sad notes of a saxophone echoing through the woods.

Get Creative with the Anvil

Fused Glass 18th Oct or Printing on 25th Oct.

Which workshop do you want to book? Why not both!? Socially distanced, limited and bookable now!

Workshop One:

Join Stevie Davies at The Anvil so she can guide you to create your own unique fused glass design. You will create art panels full of colour and texture which could be hung, placed in a stand or mounted in a frame.

Celebrate National Poetry Day with acclaimed poet Daljit Nagra

Celebrate National Poetry Day on Thursday 1 October with award-winning poet Daljit Nagra in an online event hosted by Derby Libraries with Derby Poetry Festival.

Daljit is a Forward Poetry Prize winner, the first BBC Radio 4 Poet in Residence and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. His poem Singh Song! is on the curriculum for English Literature GCSE.

Déda Reopens Ready for Autumn

Derby-based Déda has announced the first stage of its road map to fully re-open the cultural venue in Chapel Street and its community-based work which enriches people’s lives through dance and the arts.

Local Entrepreneur Supports Derbys Finest Re-brand

A networking group set up to support women in all walks of business life has inspired a Derby entrepreneur to share her branding expertise.

Derbys Finest was formed in 2017 to celebrate and support women across Derbyshire who make an impact in their business or who make a positive contribution to the wider community.

The group recently held a virtual coffee morning to enable businesswomen to share experiences during lockdown and provide mutual support.