May 2021

Winner of Derby Children’s Picture Book Award 2021 announced

The winner of the third Derby Children’s Picture Book Award is announced today (28 May) by the organisers of Derby Book Festival.  The winning book, from a shortlist of three, is All Kinds of Families by Sophy Henn, published by Egmont.  The Award aims to celebrate picture books that children can relate to and in which the diversity and challenges of modern life are represented.  

The three shortlisted books were read by pupils in Years 2&3 at eight Derby primary schools in May and the children voted for their favourite on Voting Day, 25 May.  

Employers Offered Cash Boost For T-Level Placements

Technical education regional pioneers Derby College Group (DCG) have welcomed a Government initiative to encourage more employers to provide students with work experience as part of their study programme.

Employers are now able to claim a £1,000 cash boost for every T-Level student they host on a high-quality industry placement.

Derby Book Festival opens tomorrow

The sixth Derby Book Festival opens tomorrow, Thursday 27 May, and runs for ten days until Saturday 5 June. For the first time in its history, the Festival will provide a hybrid Festival with in-person, live streamed, recorded and outdoor events taking place across the city for all ages and interests with something for everyone. 

Derwent Delights exhibition/event this weekend

Join the celebrations and explore the valley through sculpture, textiles, film and poetry this weekend at the Derwent Delights Exhibition, from the 29th May to 6th June at Cromford Mills.

The Exhibition includes a host of community arts projects that explore the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site. With Live art from Tan Draig and poetry readings/drop-in workshops from Derbyshire-based poet, Sophie Sparham. And don't forget the Live drone camera action with FrontRowFilms on Saturday!

Matinée: Bringing creativity home

Arts Derbyshire is delighted to support Dementia Action Week 2021 with the launch of the second round of our Matinée Outreach dementia friendly arts project. The project invites those living with dementia and their carers in Derbyshire to take part in a creative adventure over telephone and post with our fabulous team of professional artists. There’s the chance to explore some creative writing, or crafts or visual arts all from the safety and comfort of your own home, and at your own speed.

Croots Farm Shop unveils fresh new look

Popular Derbyshire farm shop Croots has unveiled a fresh new look as part of its rebranding.

The farm shop at Duffield has introduced new signage, created a new logo, and redecorated its café and the outside of the store. Old family photos have been framed and hung in the café to reflect the history behind the farm shop.

Derby Rams finally hit the Trail

One of the 30 rams, before painting began. Credit Derby Museums.


City wakes up to a flock of 30 colourful ram sculptures as part of a unique world-class art trail, 27th May – 22nd August 2021.

This Thursday 27th May, residents of Derby will wake up to a delightful sight as a flock of 30 colourful ram sculptures appear across the city, marking the start of the much-anticipated Derby Ram Trail.

Derby BIDs Put Out The Flags For Visitors’ Return

Derby city centre’s two Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) are brightening up their areas to welcome visitors back ahead of key events this summer.

The Cathedral Quarter BID has installed bunting on Corn Market, Iron Gate, Sadler Gate and The Strand which will remain in place throughout the summer months.

Music is on the menu for the next phase of Derby Market Place

Music is on the menu at Derby Market Place, with some of the area’s finest acts lined up to keep diners entertained as the outdoor city centre venue enters its next phase.
Over the next four weekends, Alfresco Dining Sessions will feature live acoustic bands, DJ sets, and a steel pan band, giving the local cultural sector a boost while setting the scene for good times in a COVID-secure environment.

DCG Agriculture Students Highly Commended In National Competition

Agriculture students from Derby College Group’s (DCG) Broomfield Hall land-based and leisure college in Morley have been highly commended in a national farm planning competition.

It was the first time that Broomfield Hall had put a team forward for the Institute of Agricultural Management’s Farm Planner competition which was held virtually this year and open to all UK Further Education and Higher Education colleges.

LEVEL Centre Announce New Artistic Associates

We’re thrilled to be able to introduce you to our first cohort of Artistic Associates for our pilot scheme #LEVELAssociateLab. These roles will form part of our leadership team at LEVEL, and will support our goal in creating an inclusive, relevant and representative team, who have lived experience of the communities we work with. This is also a fantastic opportunity to support more freelancers who will provide an independent voice and a different perspective to inform what LEVEL does and how it does it.

Mainframe Newsletter - May 2021

We've been so excited to get back into QUAD and see the doors open to the public. Over the next couple of month we'll be working to see how our events can start to return to the building and being in-person.

Vote of confidence in Derby IT firm connecting office space across cities

A Derby firm is connecting offices across three cities after winning a contract to provide state-of-the-art IT services for the innovative series of workplaces.

L.E.A.D. IT Services has won the contract to provide sophisticated technology to CUBO offices in the city, as well as in Nottingham and Sheffield. CUBO is a multi-use workspace which allows companies to rent office rooms and use communal facilities without having to pay upkeep bills.

Derby Museum and Art Gallery is re-opening (again)!

With Government restrictions easing, we're excited to announce that Derby Museum & Art Gallery will be re-opening from tomorrow, Tuesday 18th May.

Entry is free and you will not need to pre-book to visit. Covid safety measures, including a one-way system and hand sanitising stations, will be in place for your protection, and we ask all visitors who can to wear a face covering.

You can find out more here


Fleet Arts: Derwent Delights Project

Join the team at Fleet Arts for their end-of-project celebratory exhibition 'Derwent Delights', taking place across the May Bank Holiday 2021.

Derwent Delights is a celebratory exhibition of a community arts project run by Fleet Arts, that has explored the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Sites' rich landscape and history.

Showcasing sculptural metalwork by Miles Halpin, Textile Art by Tan Draig and poetry, textile and video responses created by a wide variety of groups across the valley working with professional artists.

People Express Arts: The Magic Lantern Puppet Show

Saturday 29th May - Friday 4th  June 2021 | Rosliston Forestry  Centre, Burton Rd, Rosliston, Swadlincote, DE12 8JX.

New interactive puppet show with live music & a hands-on craft making activity for all ages. Fully accessible, Covid-Safe - a great family outing!

The Magic Lantern is a brand new puppet show developed with parents, SEN children and young people, in response to the impact of the pandemic.

50+ New Sculptures from Jeremy James

Jeremy welcome you to his new collection of sculptures, the first for 2021. Most have been made during the 'lockdown' periods of recent months. Jeremy has been fortunate enough to have his studio at home here in Derbyshire, so woking has been made easier and he is able to carry on during these very difficult days. There are new themes here, as well as past ones revisited!

To view Jeremy's new 2021 collection, visit his website by clicking here.

Derby Museums STEAM Session Event: Educators can book now for FREE

Derby Museums invites you to join us for our upcoming STEAM Session event ‘Evidence-based STEAM Learning Strategies’. Taking place online at 6-7:30pm on Tues 25th May. This series of FREE bi-monthly CPD events is ideal for teachers (EYFS through to post-16) and all other forms of educators.

STEAM Session: Evidence-based STEAM Learning Strategies - 25th May:

Junction Arts: 'Our Place' Filmmaker Brief

Applications are invited for an exceptional and versatile Filmmaker for ‘Our Place’, a project led by Junction Arts and only made possible thanks to public funding from the National Lottery through Arts Council England. 'Our Place' will showcase the people and places of the East Midlands through the arts.  
Location: Travel across the East Midlands will be required 
Duration of freelance contract: June – August 2021  

Junction Arts Opportunity: 'Our Place' Evaluator Brief

Applications are invited for an experienced evaluator for ‘Our Place’, a project led by Junction Arts and only made possible thanks to public funding from the National Lottery through Arts Council England. 'Our Place' will showcase the people and places of the East Midlands through the arts.  
Location: Some travel across the East Midlands may be required 
Duration of freelance contract: June – October 2021  
Fee: £2,500 (including VAT and expenses) 

Wathall’s and Colleague Box Team Up To Offer Bereavement Comfort and Support

Wathall’s - Derby’s longest established independent funeral directors - have teamed up with personalised giftbox designers Colleague Box to create ‘A Hug After Loss’ that people across the UK can send to their family, friends and colleagues who have lost a loved one.

Wathall’s have been established since 1858 with branches in Derby, Ashbourne, Burton-on-Trent, Borrowash and Alvaston. The company also runs the award-winning Dandelions Bereavement Support which offers a range of services from free to attend groups to counselling. 

Winners announced in Derby schools’ competition to design mini rams as part of world-class sculpture trail

The winners of the Schools Mini Ram Trail (L-R): Mr Ramington, Patty, The Friends and Family Ram and My Life in Derby. Credit Oliver Taylor.

Derby Museums, together with education partner Rolls-Royce, are delighted to announce the four winning designs from schools across Derbyshire that will feature as part of a school’s Mini Ram Trail in the Museum and Art Gallery from 27 May to 22 August 2021. In addition to the four winners, the 26 runners up will also be showcased at the Museum and Art Gallery.

Straight Curves: May In The Loop, September Studio Re-Opening

We are pleased to confirm that our in person courses will re-start with a full programme at our studio in September 2021. In fact its so full that we are still working on it but we are nearly there and there's lots online to choose from already! But do not fear as we know many of you love our virtual courses these will continue too so there is something for everyone.

BBC Novels That Shaped Our World Writing Competition

This year Derbyshire Libraries received funding to produce a series of library activities and events to celebrate the novel, and the joy of reading in participation of the BBC 'Novels That Shaped Our World' programme, funded by Arts Council England.  

We launched a 500 word writing competition on the theme of Isolation. This ran from Monday 1 February 2021 and closed on Wednesday 31 March 2021.

It was open to all residents aged 16 and over who live within the administrative boundaries of Derbyshire County Council.

No28 Belper: Open Poetry Event

'Strange Times' is an open poetry event hosted by No28 Belper on Thursday 27th May, from 11am too 1pm.

The event gives local poets the platform to read what they've writing during this troubled year, or for other to simply come and listen to how others have responded - maybe even distract themselves with memories of more happier times and hopes for the future. Booking is essential and numbers are limited due to the current covid restrictions.

To book your place, please telephone Lorna Dexter on 01773 822732.

Junction Arts: Amazing opportunities and our latest news

This year, Junction Arts' key mission is to bring our communities back together safely. The Mental Health Foundation note that getting involved in arts, social activities and interaction within our communities alleviates anxiety, depression and stress, and together we can be at the fore front to champion this!

High Peak CVS Recruitment

The team at High Peak CVS are delighted to be able to announce that they are currently recruiting for two new roles within the team: 

Have you visited the Barn this week?

It has been great to have welcomed so many of you back to the Barn since we re-opened in April. The weather has been mixed at times, so we're still hoping that we'll be able to re-open for indoor hospitality from Monday 17th May.

But thank you to everyone who continue to support us - and don't forget that even when the weather isn't the best, the Barn is still open and you can still visit and sit underneath one of our heated gazebos if you make a booking online.

Chesterfield College asks creative businesses to join their campaign to highlight how Creativity Pays

Chesterfield College is calling for creative businesses across Derbyshire to join their campaign to highlight how crucial creative skills are for the economy, our communities and our wellbeing. The campaign, Creativity Pays, will showcase creative businesses and careers as well as connect the community to support local makers and creatives. It also aims to encourage people to develop the skills the creative industries sector in our region need for the future.

First Art: Free online performance this Friday

We still have some places left for an exclusive online performance of 'Love Letters at Home' taking place this Friday at 8pm.

Tickets are normally £10 but we are offering them free!

We’re keen to encourage people that wouldn’t normally see this sort of thing to give it a go, especially those living in Bolsover and North East Derbyshire.

If you are interested in attending the online performance, please click here.


Derbyshire Open Arts 2021 - Online: Pentimento Live Interview & DOArtsinwindows

Pentimento - Ceramics and Print will be interviewed live on Instagram, Saturday 15th May 2021 at 10:30 am.

Caroline Hewitt and Jaki Darlington's work is underpinned by a mutual love of the animal world. They specialise in distinctive hand-built ceramics, producing character driven animal sculpture, wood mounted British birds and have developed a collection of hand-made tiles.
They are interviewed on Saturday by Andrea Joseph.

The Prompt Box from Derbyshire Writing School

The Prompt Box is our creative writing prompt subscription service. Each month you’ll receive unique, creative, and inspiring writing prompts all wrapped up and delivered to your door. We’ll also email a PDF workbook each month to help you get the most from the prompts. Our Prompt Boxes will help you write fiction and non-fiction, or you can use them to write poetry. 

The aim of The Prompt Box is to:

Derbyshire Libraries eNewsletter – May 2021

This May - Baby Babble returns online, we announce the winner of our BBC Novels that Shaped the World writing competition, the Book-Off returns, and much more!

Our Current Provision

Our libraries are open for the following:

Artist call out for High Peak Community Arts youth programme

Applications are invited for an exceptional and versatile Artist for ‘Our Place’, to work with High Peak Community Arts on a project led by Junction Arts and only made possible thanks to public funding from the National Lottery through Arts Council England.  
'Our Place' will showcase the people and places of the East Midlands through the arts.  
Project Outline 

Live & Local | Exciting Job Opportunity

A great opportunity to join a successful and growing arts organisation and an ideal career development opportunity for a person with the right experience.

Marketing & Publicity Assistant£18,065 (Full-time, 35 hrs per week/flexi time)

Calling all creative entrepreneurs!

Derby Museums is looking for creative entrepreneurs to join a once-in-a-lifetime fellowship to take your arts and culture project to the next level. You’ll work with mentors and other cultural trailblazers from around the UK to explore new tools and frameworks to build your project and drive change in your community.

Writers' Newsletter: Simon French

Readers of Simon French's debut collection Joyriding Down Utopia Avenue are in for a delightfully jolt-filled, dodgem-car ride.

People search for thrills, only to find them deflating into disillusionment. Yet elsewhere there are tender, moving and funny encounters in suburbia. Turns and twists of perspective abound, surprising, often shocking and sometimes mystifying us. What we thought we had experienced shifts dramatically, and we need to re-think what we have witnessed.

DCG Group And Student Clinch National Awards

Derby College Group’s (DCG) Student Mental Health Society and the role of one of its key members have been recognised with national awards.

The society and the work of A Level student Bhavandeep Bains in this and other activities was amongst more than 500 entries for The National Societies and Volunteering Awards which celebrate student volunteering and societies in UK colleges and universities.

The student-led society won the Wellbeing Award and 17-year-old Bhavan was highly commended in the Extra Mile award.

Artcore May 2021 Newsletter

We are utterly ecstatic to invite you to join us onsite where we can connect, create and come together (socially distanced) for the first time in 2021. We have a full programme lined up for people of all ages and abilities for the month of May including new blocks of Future Endeavours, Express Yourself and Creative in Common! As we will be adhering to guidelines and facilitating with reduced numbers, all activities must be booked in advance so we can ensure your safety and comfort as we create and reconnect.  

St John Street Gallery is open!

The St John Street Gallery is open again and full of vibrant artwork, celebrating a new awakening. We invite you to once again see all the beautiful art inside our gallery. It's just not the same viewing it online when you can come experience the rich colours, the variety of textures, the clever compositions of the wide range of artwork in person. Spring has arrived, not just in the landscape outside but it is also tangible in the bright and vibrant atmosphere inside the Gallery. We welcome you back!

Tickets on sale for all Derby Book Festival 2021 events

Tickets are on sale from today (29th April) for over 60 in-person events at the sixth Derby Book Festival.  For the first time in its history, the Festival will provide a hybrid Festival with in-person, live streamed, recorded and outdoor events taking place across the city from 27th May - 5th June for all ages and interests with something for everyone. 

Fleet Arts - Job Vacancy: Arts Administrator

Job Specification
Hours: 10 x hours per week + 2 x hours every three months to attend Management Committee meetings 
Salary: £18,720 pro rata (£4,752 per annum)
Days:  2 x half days per week (specific days agreed after interview)
Times: 2 x regular 5 x hour shifts to be done between 9am – 5pm (specific times agreed after interview)

Museum of Making bookings open

Be one of the first through the doors when the new Museum of Making opens on Friday 21st May.

Entry is free (with the exception of special exhibitions) but, due to Covid restrictions, you'll need to book your timed tickets in advance.

You can also book tickets to see our new exhibition, Scale (prices from £2.50) - an exploration of big and small at the brand new Museum of Making.

Local Photographer – a double winner

Photo credit to Sara Miller

Kirk Langley based photographer Sara Miller, was successful twice in the international ‘Pink Lady Food Photographer of the Year’ competition when results were announced on 27th April.

The Awards celebrate the very best in food photography from around the world. Open to professional and non-professionals alike, there were over 10k entries from over 90 countries. Sara’s work was short-listed in two of the categories.

DCG helps Berkeley Inns prepare staff for hospitality sector re-opening

Berkeley Inns, the rapidly expanding pub restaurant group, is working with Derby College Group (DCG) to upskill and develop its staff as the hospitality sector prepares to reopen on May 17.

Around 50 staff – a quarter of the company’s 200-strong workforce – have received training in areas such as food safety and customer service via Roundhouse Thinking, the college’s professional training and executive education provider.

Cromford Mills: Celebrating our Past and Present

Welcome to the summer at Cromford Mills! We are ‘Good to Go’: meeting the Visit England status as somewhere ticking all the criteria to keep it’s visitors safe.

We very much hope to see some of you in the yard for the events and activities planned to celebrate our anniversaries this year. It’s a remarkable time for us, being 250 years since Arkwright came to Cromford, 50 years since the Arkwright Society was formed and 20 years since the Derwent Valley was declared a World Heritage Site.

May Events include:

Belper Community Play - Stories Wanted!

Playwright Kevin Fegan is researching a community play for Belper in 2022, which will take place at sites in and around the town centre.

Kevin is looking for people willing to share their stories, characters and ideas about Belper and the surrounding area. These can be historical or contemporary, factual or fictional.

“A community play should be inspired by interesting stories and characters. I know from experience the material is always out there in a community, if people are willing to share with me.” 

Writers' Newsletter - May 2021

Belper Library to play host to the Poet Laureate's national tour

Poet Laureate Simon Armitage is to visit Derbyshire’s newest library as part of his national A to Z Libraries Tour. Simon will be joined by special guest the award-winning poet Helen Mort, former Derbyshire Poet Laureate.

BB&J Choose Safe and Sound As Charity of the Year

Leading commercial property consultancy BB&J Commercial have adopted child exploitation specialists Safe and Sound as their charity of the year.

BB&J Commercial are based in The Wyvern and operate across the East Midlands – providing expert advice on all types of commercial and land.

The company have supported a number of local charities since they were established in 2010 and are planning a range of fund-raising activities in the coming year for Safe and Sound.