THE VALLEY THAT CHANGED THE WORLD... The first ever photo book of the Derwent Valley Mills in Derbyshire, reckoned to be the most significant World Heritage Site on the planet
About the project
My Project Video (I am assuming you have watched it!) will have hopefully convinced you of the importance of the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site… Yes, it really is more significant than the Pyramids of Giza, Great Wall of China, Grand Canyon, Silk Road... hence the title of the book THE VALLEY THAT CHANGED THE WORLD.
And yes, you did hear that one world changer was the Strutt Mills at Belper and Milford inspiring the building of skyscrapers.
UNESCO awarded the valley World Heritage Site Status in 2001 yet this will be the first ever photo book to document the area. I am the official photographer for the Arkwright Society - based at Cromford Mills where Sir Richard Arkwright built his first cotton mill - and it was the Society who a year ago invited me to assemble a book covering this 15-mile stretch from Cromford to Derby... about 50 square miles overall.
There are many costs involved in ensuring this book gets published, not least for the printing. I also want to mount an exhibition to tour the Derwent Valley. Also, once the book is published, it will help fund the Arkwright Society as it continues its work regenerating Arkwright's first historic mills in Cromford and preserving the rich heritage of this valley.
Where You Come In
I do hope you can help...a pledge of just £10 will ensure you get a 'Thank You' in the book. If you pledge £50, you will get a free copy of the book (likely to be sold at around £20). You will also get an invitation to the launch and accompanying exhibition which I hope will be a glitzy champagne and twiglets occasion.
You might know me as a chief contributor to DERBYSHIRE LIFE magazine. For £100, you get not only a free copy of the book but also a year's subscription to Derbyshire Life.
There are lots of other rewards including tours of the Derwent Valley mills and there are raffle tickets - whatever your pledge amount - for a prize draw, the winner getting a balloon flight for two over Derbyshire.
Are You A Photographer?
I am also here to invite you on to this project and be a part of it... I bring you an exciting reward: for a donation of at least £25, you can upload up to five photos of the Derwent Valley to my website, all of which will be considered for inclusion in the book. You may even get all five. Donate £50 or more and you become a Bronze Sponsor, and can upload up to 10 images. You also get a complimentary copy of the book. £100 or more makes you a Silver Sponsor, with an opportunity to upload 20 photos. And... along with the complimentary book, there are other rewards, as you'll see from the list.
What's really exciting about this is that your photos may well help widen the scope of the book and produce an even fuller and more definitive photographic record of the Derwent Valley than even I thought possible.
Want to Upload Photos?
Once you've pledged at least £25, you can upload your photos. Before you do, please read these important points:
1. Naturally you will want to know how many of your photos are likely to be included in the book.
As we are intending to publish a high quality photo book, then I am sure you can appreciate that I will need to exercise quality control.
That said, my belief is that if you have donated at least £25 so that you can upload photos, you are probably a serious photographer or at least someone who knows their way round a camera. If so, it's likely I will use a good proportion of your photos.
What I also need to point out is that if I get a lot of very good but very similar images, I may have to make some difficult decisions. After all, we can only have so many photos of the Horseshoe Weir at Belper, beautiful though it is. So, I would encourage you to let me have a variety of images AND a few that other photographers (including me) might not have taken.
Thank you to Caroline Bridges who has promised to pledge to this project. I am delighted that she is going to upload the photo you can see above. I have never seen Belper Mill surrounded by mist and as I haven't taken a picture anything like this of the mill, it's definitely going to go in the book.
So, ideally, I would hope to see a lot of images that add to and/or enhance what I have taken myself and include them in the book. However, as I type this prior to the appeal launch, I daren't estimate how many images are going to come my way. My ideal would be to expand the book from the originally scheduled 150 pages to 225 so that I can include 75 pages of other people's photos. However, what will I do if, say, 200 photographers give me 500 stunning images? Well, to borrow a famous film line: 'We're going to need a bigger book.'
LATEST: I have secured a £100 London Camera Exchange voucher which will be awarded to the Best Image. That image will also be included in the exhibition and the winning photographer will get to keep the framed picture.
2. You don't have to upload your photos straightaway. For one thing, you might not have taken them yet! Indeed, this book project may have inspired you to get out into the Derwent Valley to take those winning images that could well find their way into this book (my notes about the inclusion of photos is covered below). The video appeal you will have viewed will give you an idea of what kind of images will be included. Happily it's a wide variety. As I mention in the video, I am aiming to depict the landscape and the life of the valley. If your photos link in to the heritage, that's great, but I welcome any images taken in the valley, be it Shining Cliff Wood in autumn, a heron in Wyver Lane Nature Reserve, a family picnic at Black Rocks, or the Aviva Tour of Britain coming through Belper. If you go to my website, the Home Page has a scrolling slideshow of many photos I have taken. Maybe they will inspire you to get out there. Here's the link to my Home Page: http://www.ashleyfranklin.co.uk/
3. If you ARE ready to upload, the link is below. Please make sure you read the notes on the Upload Page of my website. There are some important points to be aware of, like having a caption for your photo along with maybe some background information on each of your photos.
Here is the link you need to upload your photos: http://129040.tifmember.com/derwent_valley_book_upload.html