Address by the Mayor of Derby, John Whitby, at the Unveiling Ceremony of the Made in Derby Trail

Lord Burlington, distinguished ladies and gentlemen.

For centuries, Derby has been at the cutting edge of industry and technology and this augmented reality trail bring us another first as the Chair of the Selection Panel, Steve Hall, described earlier. Today, Derby is the UK’s number one hi-tech city. Blazing technological trails, such as this one, is part of our DNA as a city.

Today’s event has been a culmination of a very productive partnership between Derby City Council, D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership and the private sector.

It was the private sector who approached the Council with the concept. It was not a hard sell. The Council quickly caught the vision, recognised its value and set the wheels in motion.

There are many people that have made this possible who were ably led by Steve Hall, the managing editor of Derby Telegraph who was brave enough to take on the leadership of this project, piloting this from concept to reality.

Thank you Steve.

My thanks also to the numerous readers of the Derby Telegraph who made 400 recommendations from which a selection panel chose the first ten that are being recognised today.

The panel, chaired by Steve Hall, comprised John Forkin, the Managing Director of Marketing Derby; Helen Wathall, the chair of St Peter’s Business Improvement District; Tony Butler, the Executive Director of Derby Museums; and Adam Buss the Chief Executive of Derby Quad, and I.

My sincere thanks for the sterling work of my fellow panellists.

The artists Tim Clapcott with Derby City Council’s Public Art Officer, Helen Acton developed the concept and created Made in Derby brand.  Along with Arnold Pollock they combined this public art installation with computer generated information to tell the Derby’s unique story.

I encourage everyone here with a smart phone to experience the augmented reality of each plaque before you leave today.

At the Council, thanks also go to Cllr Martin Rawson and his multi-disciplinary team of public art and regeneration specialists.

My thanks also to the contractors, Eurovia, who so seamlessly integrated these plaques into the city streets that they looked as though they’ve always been there!

Finally, my thanks to D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership – the private sector-led partnership promoting economic growth, jobs and business start-ups in Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.

“The original Made in Derby concept is to expand this trail to honour people from all walks of life who have helped to contribute towards the very essence of Derby.

“Our Local Enterprise Partnership, D2N2, has part-funded this £70,000 project and they have agreed to allocate another £80,000 for the next phase. This allocation is being provided from their current investment of £1.65m in our city centre improvement scheme and it is my hope that there would be consensus among all actors to make this happen.

“We are appreciative of their unswerving partnership with us on our journey to transform Derby into a City of Choice for residents, businesses and visitors.”

A famous commentator once said that a people without knowledge of their history and culture is like a tree without roots.

Made in Derby is the bridge between the past, present and future, so that we can continue to grow this city on the strong roots of the past and develop its people to produce more world renowned fruit in the future.

Ladies and gentlemen, it is my distinct privilege to now declare the Made in Derby Trail officially open.