World Heritage Site - Derwent Valley Mills

In December 2001, the Derwent Valley Mills in Derbyshire was inscribed on the World Heritage List by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). This international designation confirms the outstanding importance of the area as the birthplace of the factory system where in the 18th Century water power was successfully harnessed for textile production. Stretching 15 miles down the river valley from Matlock Bath to Derby, the World Heritage Site contains a fascinating series of historic mill complexes, including some of the world's first 'modern' factories.

The Statement of Outstanding Universal Value  now lies at the core of any inscription and management plan for World Heritage Sites. It is included as an appendix to the current management plan, but at the next full revision of the plan in 2012 it will be incorporated in the body of the document.

The Management Plan for the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site was adopted in April 2003.  It marked the culmination of a wide-ranging consultation process, undertaken over three years, involving individuals and organisations throughout the Derwent Valley and beyond.

High Peak Pumping HouseThe main text of the Management Plan [PDF - 0.55MB] is available to download.

The Management Plan establishes the long-term principles for sustaining the outstanding character and value of the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site, and for harnessing the full range of economic, social and environmental opportunities afforded by this international designation for the benefit of local people.

26 strategic objectives for managing the site have been identified. These are arranged within the Plan under five key headings:

  • Conservation, protection and enhancement
  • Public awareness, education, research and understanding
  • Transportation
  • Sustainable tourism
  • Co-ordination, monitoring and consultation

The Management Plan represents a significant milestone in establishing a partnership approach to the future management of a unique cultural landscape, but it is not an end in itself. The document is reviewed and updated on a regular basis to ensure that its aims embrace new opportunities and fresh challenges. The success of the Management Plan rests firmly on the continuing support and involvement of all those who live, work or own property in the area.

If you would like to receive a full copy of the Management Plan by post, please contact Adrian Farmer; the Heritage Co-ordinator for the Derwent Valley Mills Site.

Tel: 01629 536 830



Related Documents

Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site Map [PDF - 2.59MB]