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Private: Museum of Making opens September 2020

19th Sept Open to Public

Derby’s new Museum of Making set to open in September 2020

On the site of the world’s first factory this new museum will inspire the makers of tomorrow.

The countdown to the opening of the new Museum of Making in Derby has begun! On Saturday 19th September 2020, the new Museum of Making will open to the public for the very first time. The Museum has been designed to inspire those who visit with new creativity, while showcasing Derby’s 300-year history of making and celebrating the area’s rich history of innovation. The Museum is located in the Derwent Valley Mills UNESCO World Heritage Site, and stands on the site of the world’s first factory, the Derby Silk Mill.

Designed and made by the people and industries of Derby, the Museum of Making is truly unique and will be a must-visit destination for those in the East Midlands and beyond. To enter the Museum, visitors will walk through the iconic 18th century Bakewell Gates (part of the original structure of the Silk Mill) to be greeted by an impressive Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engine which will hang above visitors from the ceiling in the Civic Hall. This engine has already been dramatically winched into place as due to its size, and the impressive Civic Hall, a triple height glass atrium that forms the entrance to the new Museum is being constructed around it – a testament to the engineering strengths of the region.

Visitors will have full access to the 50,000 objects in the Museum’s collections, which will showcase a range of items from Derby’s Palaeolithic past and its rich industrial history to the modern day. There will also be bespoke workshop spaces where those who want to come and create can do just that, making this Museum more than just a place where people can look at its collections; as the name suggests, at the Museum of Making, visitors will be encouraged to create and make.

Ahead of the opening in 2020, the public are also being offered a once in a lifetime opportunity: to make their mark on the new Museum of Making by having their name, or the name of a loved one, permanently displayed in the entrance hall of the Museum. They can choose to sponsor either a small or large name plaque, adding to and helping to secure the Museum’s future with their donation. As all donations to the Museum’s endowment are currently being doubled with match funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, this means that a donation of £250 including gift aid becomes £625 and a gift of £500 becomes £1250 at no extra cost to you. These unique gifts are available to the public now, so visit to find out more.

Tony Butler, Executive Director, Derby Museums says: “So far, over 1000 people have been involved in making the new Museum of Making, ensuring that the Silk Mill – a site of global significance – will be protected and enhanced for future generations to enjoy. With exhibits, workshops, regular activities and events, there will be something for everyone in this Grade II listed building, which, for the first time will be fully accessible to all. With less than one year to go, we can’t wait to share the new Museum of Making with those living locally, and further afield, next September.”

Anne Jenkins, Director of England, Midlands & East, The National Lottery Heritage Fund, says: “2020 is set to be a very exciting year as we welcome the Museum of Making’s opening, and it is sure to be a must-see destination for many National Lottery players who have raised the money to make this important project possible. It’s been wonderful to see the Museum take shape within the significant heritage setting of the Silk Mill – it’s the perfect home to showcase the spirit of innovation that Derby is famed through the Museum’s remarkable collection.”

The new Museum will also boast a new destination café, serving up tasty treats to its visitors, and the Museum of Making shop will offer a range of gifts to suit all interests and budgets. From weddings and charity balls to business meetings and conferences, the Museum will be able to offer a range of unique spaces available for private hire, as well as educational and creative environments dedicated to learning and making.

The Museum of Making is being developed by Derby Museums, an independent charitable trust that manages two other museums in the city – the Museum and Art Gallery and Pickford’s House. This £17m project is being funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund, Arts Council England, D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership and a range of trusts and foundations.

Tony Butler, Executive Director, Derby Museums concludes: “The new Museum of Making will open on Saturday 19th September 2020, so add this to your diaries and we look forward to seeing you next year!”

Follow the project’s progress on Twitter @MuseumofMaking or via the museum’s Tumblr blog at:

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