What’s On At Cromford Mills

Cromfordmills.water Cromford mills

Scarecrow Success at Cromford Mills

As part of the Cromford Mills annual Scarecrow Festival on 5th and 6th August we had a variety of activities for families and different competitions, including scarecrow making.  Thank you everyone who attended and supported the event as it was a brilliant weekend.  

The Scarecrow competition was a real success with 12 entries, all made by our visitors, volunteers and staff team.  Throughout the weekend we held a scarecrow judging competition, with visitors following the scarecrow trail and picking their favourites.  All the scarecrows were fantastic and it was wonderful to see the site brought to life by them!  All the entries have now been added up and we can now announce that we have a winner and a runner up.

We are happy to announce our first winner is, ‘Theoni the Bird Warrior’ and our runner up is ‘Shakira- ‘The Hips Don’t Lie’’, both made by two of our younger visitors.  We would like to say a massive well done to both winners and both scarecrows were amazing.

The whole weekend was full of enjoyment and happy faces. We had the pleasure of having Woodies Wings with us, with their owls and parrots, and Nesta’s Ark, with her snakes, gecko, frog and other fascinating creatures.  Thank you to all of the staff and volunteers at Cromford Mills who supported the event and helped make it happen.  We look forward to the upcoming family fun weekends taking place at the mill.

Our next weekend is on 12th and 13th August with ‘Animal Magic’.  This weekend will have different games, craft workshops, glitter tattoos, face painting and more.  Nesta’s Ark will be back for the whole weekend, and you will be able to meet and handle various animals such as snakes, frogs, geckos, lizards and more. Arkwright’s Café will also be providing a selection of tasty animal themed treats and cookies.

We then have a Pirate Festival on the 19th and 20th August with a pirate treasure trail, themed games and a fabulous pirate craft workshop where you can make mermaid peg doll puppets and your own pirate hat.  We have the pleasure of Woodies Wings with us all weekend with their wonderful birds and parrots.  Arkwright’s café will be serving themed treats all weekend, and there will be face painting and glitter tattoos.

Over the family fun weekends it is free entry into the mill yard with a small fee for the craft workshops and holding animals.  The Mill Shop will also be open for gifts and ice creams.  Tickets for the audio tours, guided tours and the Visitor Centre in Building 17 can be purchased at the entrance of the mill from kiosk and the Mill Shop.

All Family Fun Weekend’s at Cromford Mills are free, although there will be a small charge for some of the activities. For further details please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256.


Tuesday 8th August – Monday 28th August (closed Mondays except Bank Holiday)

11am-4pm

MODEL RAILWAY EXHIBITION

Location: Gothic Warehouse

FREE ENTRY

A fascinating display for all ages by the Chesterfield Railway Modellers.

For further details please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256.


Animal Magic at Cromford Mills

Join us for a weekend of animal magic at Cromford Mills. Meet the animals and find out all about a wide variety of fascinating creatures on Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th August. 

Come and meet snakes, geckos and other fascinating creatures to discover more about. Meet the pythons, corn snakes, geckos, lizards, frogs and hermit crabs as well as a tortoise, giant iguana and bosc monitor. There will also be the opportunity to handle some of the animals in these interactive sessions.

Follow the trail and discover which animal species are endangered, join in with a variety of different games, then have a go at making your own animal masks to take home in this family craft workshop.

There will also be face painting, a barbeque, a model railway exhibition, guided tours, canal boat trips and Arkwright’s Café will be serving a selection of animal themed biscuits and cookies.

A key location within the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site, there is plenty to see and do all year round at Cromford Mills with fascinating activities for all the family: discover more about this unique valley in the visitor centre where you will find interactive displays and film, meet the mighty Sir Richard Arkwright in the audio visual experience, dress up in Georgian costume, take a narrow boat ride or let one of our guides take you on a tour to bring the extraordinary history to life. There are also plenty of walks, trails, shops and places to eat to keep the whole family entertained.

The events are part of a multi-million pound restoration of the Cromford Mills site funded by National Lottery players through a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £4 million. Other charitable donors towards the project include The Monument Trust, AIM Biffa Award, The Garfield Weston Foundation, J P Getty Jr Charitable Trust, Headley Trust, Sylvia Waddilove Foundation, The Wolfson Foundation, and the Architectural Heritage Fund.

The Animal Magic weekend at Cromford Mills is free, although there will be a small charge for some of the activities. For further details please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256.


Saturday 19th – Thursday 31st August

GALLERY EXHIBITION: LYDIA SOLOMON

Location: The Gallery

FREE ENTRY

A retrospective exhibition of abstract and representational artworks. The exhibition will feature a wide variety of subjects, styles and media with a strong emphasis on innovative textile techniques.

For further details please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256.


Saturday 19th and Sunday 20th August

10am-5pm

FAMILY FUN: PIRATE FESTIVAL

Location: Cromford Mills

FREE ENTRY (small charge for some activities)

Ahoy there! Step aboard and set sail for a weekend of pirate adventure. Meet the pirates and enjoy a day of swashbuckling adventure on the high seas!

Treasure Trail – Follow the map where X marks the spot and discover where the treasure is buried on Skeleton Island. Find the treasure and take home a prize. One piece of gold (£1).

Parrots – Meet the pirates’ parrots and find out more about these fascinating birds. Why not become a pirate and hold a parrot of your own for just two pieces of gold (£2).

Pirate Crafts – Set sail aboard the Jolly Roger and make a pirate or mermaid peg doll puppet and your own pirate hat at this fun themed workshop. Drop in anytime from 11am-4pm. Three pieces of gold (£3) per child (accompanying adults free).

Swashbuckling Games – Come along and join in with a variety of pirate themed games that are fun for all the family.

Fancy Dress Come dressed as a pirate and enter the free prize draw!

Pirate Boat Trips – All aboard for pirate adventures for all the family. Capture the crafts and play the games. Fancy dress optional, treasure hunting compulsory! (Saturday only – departs 11am and 2pm). Visit www.birdswood.org for further details and to book.

The Pirate Ship’s Galley – Head to Arkwright’s Café for a bowl of shark soup or discover treasure chest cookies and chocolate coins.

Face Painting (£3) – Barbeque – Model Railway Exhibition (11am-4pm) – Guided Tours – Arkwright Spinsters (Sunday only: 11am-4pm) – Canal Boat Trips (departs 11am and 2pm – visit www.birdswood.org to book)….and more!

For further details please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256. 


Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th August

10am-5pm

TOYS AND GAMES

Location: Cromford Mills

FREE ENTRY (small charge for some activities)

Join us at the Toy Factory and enjoy a weekend filled with fun and games!

Giant Games, Board Games and Puzzles

Toy Trail – The toys have escaped! Discover where each of them are hiding. Find them all and win a prize! (£1).

Sports Day Games – Step up to the challenge and take part in sports day games for all the family! Who can skip and hula hoop for the longest or come first at the egg and spoon and bean bag races? Turn up on the hour every hour for competitive fun or turn up any time and practise your skills!

Model Railway Exhibition – A fascinating display for all ages by the Chesterfield Railway Modellers (11am-4pm).

Model Boats – A display of radio controlled model boats on the Cromford Canal (Sunday only).

Fancy Dress – Come dressed as your favourite toy character and enter the free prize draw!

Edible Toy Shop – Plenty of themed treats in Arkwright’s Café including ‘Build your own Mr Potato Head’ jacket potatoes followed with rice krispie dominoes, toy soldier cupcakes and Toy Story lollipops!

Growing up at the Mills Tour – Find out what life was like for children working in the mills and visit Cromford village to see where you might have lived and gone to school. (Saturday only, 11:30am-12:45pm) £5 Advance booking essential: 01629 823256.

Face Painting (£3) – Barbeque – Guided Tours – Saturday Canal Boat Trips (departs 11am and 2pm) and Sunday Horse Drawn Canal Boat Trips (departs 11am and 2pm – visit www.birdswood.org to book) – Leawood Pump House (Sunday only: 12noon-5pm)….and more!

For further details please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256. 


 Sunday 27th August

2-4pm

A WALK DOWN THROUGH THE LUMSDALE VALLEY

Location: Meet at the layby opposite Highfields Upper School car park entrance, Upper Lumsdale, DE4 5NA. Please park in Upper Lumsdale and not at the bottom of the Valley.

Cost: £3 – Limited places, advance booking required on 01629 823256.

A leisurely guided one mile walk down through this wooded gorge of outstanding natural beauty, exploring the stone mill ruins, ponds and waterfalls that make up this unique historical site. Please note the route down the Valley involves some steep steps and uneven paths which can be muddy and slippery. Please wear suitable footwear with a good grip. Walking poles are also recommended.


Friday 1st – Sunday 3rd September

FAMILY FUN: GEORGIAN FESTIVAL

Location: Cromford Mills

FREE ENTRY (small charge for some activities)

Step back in time and experience life in Georgian times. Chat with the village folk and mingle with the gentry – and learn all about the traditions and customs of this period in time with three days of events for all ages. Why not come dressed in Georgian costume too!

Meet the Georgians – Come and meet the millworkers and other Georgian re-enactors who will be out and about in the mill yard. Find out first-hand what it was like to live and work in the 18th century.

Georgian Games – Join in with a selection of Georgian games suitable for all the family. Learn about the history of the games including skittles, quoits and chess.

Dress As a Georgian Dress as a millworker and be part of a mill owner’s family portrait.

Georgian Inventions Trail – Follow the trail around Cromford Mills and discover a collection of Georgian inventions. Find them all and win a prize! (£1).

Silhouette Portraits – Create your own ‘profile’ portrait like those in Georgian times. A selection of Georgian accessories will be available to complement your period silhouette. Suitable for all ages. Drop in anytime. (£3 per person).

Bracelet and Bookmark Weaving Learn how to use a pair of weaving sticks to make your own bracelet or bookmark to take away. Drop in anytime for family fun.

Owls Find out about and meet the Barn Owls, the White Faced Scops Owl, the Great Grey Owl and all their fluffy friends (Sunday only).

Health and Hygiene in Georgian TimesDiscover all about health and hygiene – or rather the lack of it! – with illustrated displays.

Hog Roast and Georgian Fare – Experience a selection of Georgian themed food in Arkwright’s Café

St Mary’s Church – Visit Arkwright’s church in Cromford, originally built as a chapel for the Arkwright family. (Friday 10am-4pm, Saturday 10am-2pm, Sunday 11am-4pm)

Face Painting (£3) – Guided Tours – Canal Boat Trips (departs 11am and 2pm – visit www.birdswood.org to book)…and more!

For further details please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256.


Friday 1st September

1:30pm-3pm (talk 1:30pm-2:30pm, tea, coffee and cake from 2:30pm)

COALBROOKDALE, SHROPSHIRE: A VIRTUAL TOUR

Location: Gothic Warehouse (ground floor)

Cost: £7.50 – includes tea and cake (Limited places, advance booking recommended)

Coalbrookdale is one of the main sites in Ironbridge Gorge Museum and is where in 1709 Abraham Darby first smelted iron using coke instead of charcoal. Using photographs and site map, Fiona Kyle’s virtual tour covers the many layers of history in the Dale including the importance of the Severn, why Darby went there, the development of the Coalbrookdale Company, the Quaker influence, the significance of the Great Exhibition and the formation of a Museum in what was, eventually, one of the largest areas of industrial dereliction in Europe.

For further details and ticket bookings please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256


Friday 1st September

6pm-7:30pm

PRE-OPERA DINNER

Location: Cromford Mills

Cost: £25 (Limited places, advance booking essential)

Dine in style and enjoy a delicious three-course pre-opera dinner at Cromford Mills.

For further details and ticket bookings please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256


Friday 1st September

8pm

AN EVENING OF GEORGIAN OPERA

Location: St Mary’s Church, Cromford

Cost: £20 (includes glass of wine during the interval). Reserved seating for Arkwright Society Gold members. Advance booking recommended.

New Georgian Opera and Chelsea Concerts present an evening of music from the world of Georgian opera, the great classical composers and music theatre with soprano Alexandra Kennedy and countertenor Oliver Gerrish.

Described by The Daily Mail as ‘a stunning Soprano’ Alexandra has performed nationally and internationally including a recital for Prince Albert of Monaco. Oliver began his professional musical training at Lichfield Cathedral and went on to study at The Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He has performed all over the world and is a regular soloist with the Philharmonia Orchestra. Join us in the splendid setting of St Mary’s Church in Cromford for an evening to remember.

For further details and ticket bookings please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256


Saturday 2nd September

7pm for 7:30pm, Carriages at midnight

THE CROMFORD MILLS GEORGIAN BALL

Location: Cromford Mills

Cost: £60 per person (£400 per table of 8) – Limited places, advance booking essential

Dress code: Black Tie (Georgian costume optional)

Join us for a very special evening at Cromford Mills’ annual Georgian Ball. A celebratory and fundraising evening this is a not to be missed event in the Cromford Mills’ calendar. Enjoy a complimentary glass of Prosecco on arrival before dining in style with a delicious four-course dinner. Be entertained with period music and demonstrations of Georgian dancing – and for those who wish to dance the night away there will be the chance to learn the steps and have a go yourself! The evening will include a fundraising auction and other surprises.

For further details and ticket bookings please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256


Saturday 2nd September

11am-3pm

FENCING DEMONSTRATION

Location: Mill Yard

FREE ENTRY

In Georgian England learning to fence was an indispensable part of a gentleman’s education. Join 3 Blades Fencing Club and enjoy demonstrations of this competitive sport or why not come along and have a go yourself. Taster sessions will introduce you to some fencing basics and are suitable for adults and children from 8 years.


Saturday 2nd September

11am, 12 noon, 1pm, 2pm

ONE HOUR FENCING TASTER SESSIONS

Location: Cromford mills

Cost: £5 per person (includes kit hire and equipment)

Limited places, advance booking recommended to avoid disappointment on 01629 823256. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

For further details and ticket bookings please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256 


 Saturday 2nd September – Thursday 7th September

GALLERY EXHIBITION: CHAS WILBY

Location: The Gallery

FREE ENTRY

Exhibition featuring the art of accomplished landscape painter Chas Wilby. 


Sunday 3rd September

6pm-10pm

RICHARD ARKWRIGHT’S CANDLELIGHTING FESTIVAL

Location: Meet outside the Greyhound, Cromford Market Place

FREE ENTRY (includes soup and punch)

Richard Arkwright’s original Candlelighting Festival was a day of celebration for his workers when they paraded around the village before returning to the mill for a feast of buns, ale, nuts and fruit followed by an evening of music and dancing. Join us over 200 years later as we recreate Arkwright’s Candlelighting in our festival finale. Meet outside the Greyhound in Cromford Market Place before joining the procession to Cromford Mills where there will be soup and punch to enjoy before music and dancing. Why not come dressed for the occasion in Georgian costume!

You will need to collect your FREE voucher for soup and punch from the Mill Shop before Friday 1st September.

There will also be a licensed bar and food available for purchase. Battery operated lanterns and candles only.

For further details please visit www.cromfordmills.org.uk or phone 01629 823256. 


Courtney Wright – Arkwright Society 01629 823256 events@arkwrightsociety.org.uk


About the Arkwright Society
The Arkwright Society owns and manages Cromford Mills. It is an educational charity devoted to the rescue of industrial heritage buildings and helping to preserve the precious built and natural landscape in and around Cromford. www.cromfordmills.org.uk @CromfordMills

About the Heritage Lottery Fund
Thanks to National Lottery players, we invest money to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the heritage they care about – from the archaeology under our feet to the historic parks and buildings we love, from precious memories and collections to rare wildlife. www.hlf.org.uk @heritagelottery

Sir Richard Arkwright’s Cromford Mills, Mill Lane, Cromford,
Matlock, Derbyshire, DE4 3RQ
The Arkwright Society is a registered charity no. 515526
Cromford Mills are part of the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site