Key Stage Learning at Derby Heritage Centre

by David Turner in Derby, United Kingdom

Total raised £1,043

raised so far



Help us launch Key Stage Learning for local children at the new Derby Heritage Centre.

by David Turner in Derby, United Kingdom

We're still collecting donations

On the 9th May 2024 we'd raised £1,043 with 27 supporters in 56 days. But as every pound matters, we're continuing to collect donations from supporters.

Let's teach our children about our wonderful history and heritage!

We're great believers at Derby Uncovered that if we can educate people about their local history, then their civic pride will increase. With increased civic pride more and more successful community projects will be initiated as people often express that pride through volunteering to help projects in their area. But what's the best way to start educating people?

When they're young of course!

Children's brains are like sponges and that's the perfect time to start telling them about our exciting history and heritage.

Who are you and why are you passionate about this project?

Hi my name is David Turner and I'm the Managing Director of Derby Uncovered Community Interest Company (CIC), a local historian and author, and a father of two. I'm also incredibly self-conscious about having my picture taken but here goes nothing....


I've always been passionate about the history of our area and I've always felt that our history should be both as accessible as possible, and also delivered in a fun and inclusive manner. It was this passion that led me into leaving a 20-year career in media and marketing and starting the Derby Uncovered Newspaper in 2022.

Our Background.

The whole premise of the Derby Uncovered Newspaper and its online presence was based around two key principles:

  • Promoting the history and heritage of Derby and its surrounds.
  • Promoting the what's on and the where to go in the area nowadays.

Over time Derby Uncovered developed into not just a newspaper but also walks and events that brought Derby's history to life, as well as dedicated events - entitled Artisans Uncovered - that promoted local creators, makers, and artists.

I consider us very lucky when I say that the response to our work has been phenomenal. 

  • Our newspaper has become a well-loved part of many people's lives.
  • Our social media - 9800+ followers across Facebook and Instagram and growing daily - has become the highlight of many peoples social media scrolling.
  • Our debut artisans event entitled Artisans Uncovered attracted over 1100 visitors across two days.
  • Our walks have astounded people with the incredible but true history seen and heard on them.
  • Partnership events such as Tales from the Gaol with Richard Felix have delighted and enthralled people.
  • Our overall approach to presenting the city's history and heritage has brought pleasure to quite literally tens of thousands of people.


But there was one thing we hadn't done that people kept asking us to do - and that was to do something about some of the empty city-centre properties in Derby.

So for that we set up a brand-new community interest company.

Derby Uncovered CIC - Just what is a Community Interest Company?

You might well be asking at this point just what a Community Interest Company or CIC is, so let me explain.

Introduced in 2005 in the UK, a Community Interest Company is a type of company designed for social enterprises that want to use their profits and assets for the public good.

As a business, a CIC uses its surpluses to achieve its social objectives, rather than being driven by the goal of maximising profit for its shareholders or owners.

It is also - and this is key - entitled to fundraise and apply for funds in a way a normal limited company cannot.

And it was this CIC that opened the new Derby Heritage Centre?

Yes, that's correct.

There's a limit to what we could have done our end without setting up a CIC.

Although we produce a newspaper, organise and host walks and events and maintain passionately followed social media,  there's actually only two full-timers this end - myself and a wonderful chap called Stephen Culf - and there's a limit to what the both of us can physically and financially acheive - hence the CIC.

Thanks to the money raised by people becoming members of the CIC, a very understanding landlord and some personally donated money from ourselves, a new Derby Heritage Centre opened at 11 Sadler Gate on 24th February this year.

Nestled on Sadler-Gate - a street that's over 1000 years old - the three-storey no.11 Sadler Gate is itself almost 250 years old and houses not just your traditional heritage centre products such as prints, books and giftware but also groceries and provisions that are exclusively sourced from Derby and Derbyshire and wonderful and beautiful offerings from local creators, makers, and artists.

Now we'd like to advance to the next stage in our journey and offer Key Stage Learning for 5 to 11yr olds.

So what will the money donated go towards?

Some of the money will go towards some very much needed refurbishment work that includes plumbing and electrical work that we need to do before we house the Key Stage Learning sessions as well tacking some accessibility issues.

All of this work will be commissioned with local contractors and suppliers keeping the money within our local economy.

In addition to that we will be looking to purchase various pieces of equipment that will be used during each Key Stage Learning Session such as tablets, projectors, interactive learning books, costumes, display equipment and stationary.

Our aim is to ensure that housed within a 250-year old building on a 1000-year old street is a state-of-the-art learning environment that children can participate in and enjoy.

Why does our project matter and what impact do we want to have? 

Research undertaken in 2022 showed that if you increased peoples knowledge of their local history their civic pride automatically increased, and that civic pride can ultimately be a great big building block in terms of the future propensity of where we live.

The late novelist Michael Crichton is reported to have said, “If you don't know history, then you don't know anything. You are a leaf that doesn't know it is part of a tree.” 

And he's very right but he also missed out a key fact.

History doesn't just teach us about the leaves but also the twigs, branches, trunks and roots of life.

History is incredibly important.

It's even more important that we capture the hearts and minds of people in terms of our own history and heritage when they're young and eager.

Any final message?

Yes. All of us at the CIC firmly believe that together we are stronger and that the entire past, present and future of our city is built on the foundations of you - the people. Let's make sure then that as people we create an environment where young children can learn both our history and heritage and also a sense of pride in where we live.

I've lived in Derby all my life and I've every faith that the people of Derby can pull together on this and that we can achieve something truly special.

Thanks for taking the time to read this and please - if you can - support us.


David Turner



This project offered rewards

£20 or more

A very special Derby tour

Join David Turner - the co-founder and resident historian at the Derby Heritage Centre - for a unique 2-hour walking tour of Derby where you'll hear some incredible history.

£5 or more

Your name published on our website

We will publish your name - alongside our gratitude - on our website.

£10 or more

Your name in print in our newspaper

As well as having your name published on our website it will also be printed for posterity - alongside our thanks - in the Derby Uncovered Newspaper

£50 or more

An awesome 1815 colour map of Derby - A1 in size

Drawn by Kevin Archer, this incredible map is truly a thing of beauty and would take pride of place in any room.

£100 or more

A lifetime Derby Uncovered Newspaper subscription

Get a bi-monthly copy of the Derby Uncovered Newspaper - which is packed full of the history and heritage of Derby and it's surrounds. For ever!

£500 or more

Be a VIP!!

Meet the team behind both the Derby Uncovered Newspaper and Derby Uncovered CIC. Start of by having lunch with us, find out about the newspaper comes together, go on a VIP walk around Derby learning all about the best, grisliest, quirkiest and strangest of Derby's history before you walk away with a lifetime subscription to the Derby Uncovered Newspaper and 2 x Derby-themed books.

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