The call was made, the suggestions flooded in, the judges have met and eight people have now been selected as the first Made in Derby inductees.

The plaques are now in production and will be installed along Albion Street and Exchange Street in the New Year when the names of those selected will be revealed. The artwork, amongst other things, seeks to inspire future generations.

The project, named Made in Derby and conceptualised by artist Tim Clapcott, was endorsed by Derby City Council, the Derby Telegraph and local business leaders to feature inspirational characters who were born in Derby or have strong connections to the city.

During November, nominations were invited and there were hundreds of suggestions in many fields of endeavours. Those suggested ranged from unsung heroes to some of the most well-known names in Derby’s history.

Artist Tim Clapcott, who previously designed the sculpted heads’ artwork in Friar Gate and at Speakers Corner in the Market Place, is manufacturing the plaques, each custom-designed for each inductee.  A digital element will be included in each piece, creating a unique experience.

Deputy leader of the Derby City Council, Cllr Martin Rawson, said:

“The quality of the submissions was outstanding and the judges’ work was not easy. However, this is just the first stage. We will be adding to the list over a period of time and installing in other streets in the city centre.”

Derby Telegraph Editor Steve Hall said:

“I’m grateful to the public of Derby for responding to our call for nominations in their hundreds. We hope the Made in Derby project will help underscore pride in our great city and inspire others to emulate the level of achievement of those chosen for inclusion.”

The cost of the project is £70,000, which is being wholly funded by the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership – the private sector-led partnership which promotes economic and jobs growth across Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire – through its Local Growth Fund (LGF) allocation from Government. LGF funding is used to jointly invest in infrastructure projects which directly aid economic growth in the LEP area.

This is part of a bigger £1.9m place making project in the city centre of which D2N2 provided a grant of £1.65m from its Local Growth Fund allocation and the Council £250,000 from its capital budget – all of which is being used to fund the St Peters Street works.