Press Notice

Consultants have been appointed to create an Economic Development Masterplan (EDM) for the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site which will provide a blueprint for the site’s contribution to economic growth over the coming ten years.

They will be spending the next six weeks speaking to businesses, major landowners, local authorities and key site owners as they compile the Masterplan.

Key objectives for the EDM include:

  • providing a ‘baseline statement’ from which an assessment of the area’s current economic role and future potential can be established;
  • identifying the role the World Heritage Site will perform in driving the local economy and its potential to support economic regeneration;
  • calculating the scale of change and activity appropriate for this universally significant site, across a range of sectors including tourism, transport infrastructure, retail and commercial development.

Funding for this project is coming from the Derby and Derbyshire Economic Partnership, which is keen to understand the potential of the Derwent Valley Mills and the communities surrounding them.

Isla Macneal, the World Heritage Site Co-ordinator, said: “The Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site offers significant economic potential to Derbyshire.

“This Economic Development Masterplan will provide a framework to maximise economic opportunities, and hopefully attract investment in the area.”

Information for Editors:

Derwent Valley between Matlock Bath and Derby was inscribed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation).

World Heritage status confirms the outstanding importance of the area as the birthplace of the factory system – where water power was first successfully harnessed for textile production – a milestone in the Industrial Revolution.

The future economic prosperity of the World Heritage Site is a vital component of the Derwent Valley Mills Partnership’s vision for the site, with the goal of optimising economic benefits for local communities and encouraging conservation-led regeneration in a way that will not damage nor detract from the unique and important character of the site.

Any economic projects or proposals are expected to demonstrate that they comply with the overarching World Heritage Site Management Plan approved by UNESCO and meet in particular the principles of sustainabilit