Introducing The Blue Plaques Of Derby
Derbyshire is a county that takes great pride it is heritage from the cotton mills to the canals and railways and there is no better way of expressing this appreciation than their blue plaque system. A simple blue plaque can act as a memorial, tourist spot or simple sign of recognition for a wide range of people and landmarks with great success and – as this site shows – there is a lot for the area to be proud of.

The variety of blue plaques in Derby.
The voting system that is currently in place via Derbyshire council is one that is so simple and worthwhile that is has seen plaques awarded to a wide variety of names on a regular basis. In 2010, local people nominated their chosen figures and six were picked as worthy recipients – Baroness Olave St Clair Baden-Powell, Arthur Lowe, Jedidiah Buxton, Joseph Paxton, George Stephenson and Richard Arkwright Jr. In 2013, another group of six equally diverse people were chosen and hopefully the same will happen in another twelve months. Unlike the ancient systems where politicians, historical figures and leaders of the arts were given preferential treatment, Derbyshire has plaques to figures as varied as political activists, gardeners and a mathematical genius.

As a result of this community spirit and desire for preservation, Derby has been able to immortalise some of the area’s well-known stars as well as the lesser-known heroes that, for one reason or another, were overshadowed and did not receive the recognition deserved. For example, in one part of town there is a blue plaque to Henry Royce, the infamous Derby-based car maker, and in another there is a plaque at a silk mill commemorating a forgotten brother, murdered for his work and success by Italian spies. Without continued recognition and simple memorials like these, the minor players in the history of Derby could be unfairly lost forever.

The importance of Derby’s blue plaques.
This guide to the blue plaques in Derby aims to be a great resource for anybody that is interested in the history and people of the area by providing information on the buildings and landscapes that shaped the city and the lives of the people that made it what it is today. Local people that have voted can see pages dedicated to their chosen hero and information on the plaque sites but these plaques are also important for visitors from across the country because they provide excellent talking points and places of interest for tourists to visit. A blue plaque raises the status of a building in the eyes of visitors and gives them a place to find on their sightseeing tours but it also offers a chance to come away from Derby with new knowledge and understanding of the place and its history.

The system of awarding blue plaques in Derby is one that should be celebrated by its people because of the way it brings us closer to our forgotten past and, hopefully, the information here will encourage you to discover more and come and see these plaques for yourself. Whether you are a Derby resident keen to know more about your roots, an enthusiast that wants to get to root of Derby history or a tourist that is just looking for a different side to the city, everyone is welcome.

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