Derby Riverlights

Class of 2018

With over 4,000 nominations received from the public and some intense judging, Marketing Derby was pleased to announce the winners of the tenth annual Derby Food and Drink Awards in 2018.

The winners were announced at the awards ceremony, held at The Roundhouse on Monday 8th October 2018.

On the night, Marketing Derby presented the Royal Crown Derby Outstanding Achievement award to The Palfrey who made a significant contribution to Derby's food and drink scene.

The event also saw the launch of a new recipe book called Ten: A recipe for success, produced in collaboration with AVIT' Media and Once Upon a Fork.

The Winner of the 'Restaurant of the Year', Terroir Bistro, won £1,000 worth of Denby tableware.

The 2018 winners & finalists were:

Restaurant of the Year – sponsored by Denby Pottery
Terroir Bistro (winner)
The Dovecote

Best café – sponsored by Derby College
Bear (winner)
The Coffee House at Derby Museums
Milk & Honey Deli

Excellence in customer service – sponsored by the Derby Telegraph
Portobello (winner)
The Coffee House at Derby Museums
POINTSIX Coffee House
Milk & Honey

Best bar – sponsored by Irongate Group
Suds & Soda (winner)
Slug & Lettuce

Best pub - sponsored by Mortgage Advice Bureau
The Exeter Arms (winner)
The Dog & Moon
The Last Post

Most family friendly – sponsored by Derby Days Out
Buttermilk (winner)
POINTSIX Coffee House

Best newcomer – sponsored by the University of Derby
The Squashed Tomato (winner)
POINTSIX Coffee House
The Yard

Best international – sponsored by Riverlights Derby
Anoki (winner)

Best Out of Town – sponsored by Smooth Radio
Hackwood Farm (winner)
Fishermans Rest, Belper
The Shed at Hilton


Plans to play at Riverlights

Plans have been submitted to create a new children's play centre at Bondholder Riverlights in Derby.

London-based Sports & Leisure Centres Ltd has submitted plans to Bondholder Derby City Council to convert a vacant unit at the complex into the new venture, Injoy.

The plans, submitted by Simpson Studio Architects, on behalf of Sports & Leisure Centres, state that the new play centre would include “trampolines, climbing area, cafeteria and small meeting/seminar spaces together with lounge and bar facilities for adults over the ground and intermediate floors”.

The centre would create 25 new jobs, including five full-time roles.

The Riverlights complex, which is already home to businesses including Holiday Inn, Premier Inn, Genting Casino and Gym City - and incorporates Derby Bus Station - originally opened in 2010. In 2015, the building was bought by London-based asset management company Moorfield Group for £16.5 million.


Bright Future for Riverlights

Derby’s Riverlights complex has been made available for purchase following three years of investment and asset enhancement.

Moorfield Group, a London-based asset management company purchased Riverlights in 2015 for £16.5million. At the time of purchase, the complex had seen a lack of investment since opening, whilst ground floor retail units had continued to lie empty.

Moorfield bought the complex with the intention of improving its value through a scheme of redevelopment and proactive lettings.

After three years of work, that process has finished. The hotels, Premier Inn and Bondholder Holiday Inn, have now taken leases of the ground floor units, leaving only the rear one available, above which a new gym is set to open, a new digital advertising screen is due to be installed and the cladding above the bus station has been cleaned and repaired. Moorfield have also provided greater security, improved public realm and supported pop-up events from Bondholders Derby Quad and University of Derby, in addition to Bustler Market and Feste.

This has led to an increase in value with the scheme being marketed for £21.5million. 

John Forkin, Managing Director of Marketing Derby, said, “Following Moorfield’s scheme of improvements, Riverlights is seeing greater footfall. We are pleased to see that the investment has paid off for them and we look forward to welcoming the new owners in due course, and working closely with them to continue the improvement of this part of the city.”

He continued, “Derby City Council has plans for the future of the River Gardens which will have an impact, whilst the Bus Station extension and Riverlights Phase 2 development site offer the opportunity to make this a key location in the St Peter’s Quarter.”

Students to Exhibit at Riverlights

Second year students from Bondholder the University of Derby will be exhibiting their work at fellow Bondholder Derby Riverlights - displaying their work in the heart of the city. 

The exhibition titled Smoke and Mirrors will showcase the work of 31 young artists exploring perception and interaction of the world. 

Carl Robinson, Programme Leader at University of Derby said: “By exhibiting at Derby Riverlights we are hoping to reach a broad audience including passers-by, shoppers and those travelling via the bus station.  

"This is an experience the students will really value and they will learn what it takes to put on a professional show.”

Mark Holmes, Asset Manager at Moorfield Group, who acquired Derby Riverlights in 2015, said: “We are delighted the second year fine art exhibition is returning and we look forward to welcoming all to Derby Riverlights.”

EKV to Help Launch Gym City

Bondholder EKV Design has been appointed by fellow Bondholder Derby Riverlights to develop an interior design concept for the new flagship Gym City. 

Jonathan Naden, EKV’s Managing Director, said: “We were extremely pleased to be invited to work on this scheme, which will be located within a key area of the city next to the river.”

The gym will contain a range of cardio, resistance and free weights equipment. It will also host a Combat Zone, with a full size Octagon cage, Boxing Ring and matted areas for top class training. There will also be a Cave Man Zone with alternative cross training, a Women’s only Zone, a Dance Zone compromising of a dance studio, which will also host regular Pole fitness classes.

Mark Holmes, Asset Manager at Moorfield who own Derby Riverlights Group said: “We are delighted to welcome Gym City to Derby Riverlights and as one of only three city based gyms this is a fantastic addition to the vibrant leisure destination that we are creating in the heart of the city centre."

Derby Riverlights to host Uni art exhibition

Talented second year fine art students from Bondholder the University of Derby will be exhibiting their work, titled Archive 32, to the public from 21st-28th May at Bondholder Derby Riverlights' The Boulevard.

The collaboration between the University and Derby Riverlights allows the 32 students to make connections with the public, businesses and organisations beyond the University campus and gives them more opportunities for professional practice and new experiences in the city.

Caroline Locke, Senior Lecturer at University of Derby, said: "The retail unit we are occupying at Derby Riverlights is a vast and impressive space which will allow us to be more adventurous when we create the show. We are pleased Derby Riverlights is supporting us and being so accommodating."

Moorfield Group acquired Derby Riverlights on behalf of Moorfield Real Estate Fund III (MREFIII) in May 2015 and intend to ensure the area becomes a key leisure destination in Derby city centre.

Nic Lowry, Asset Manager at Moorfield Group said: "We are thrilled to be working with the second year Fine Art students and look forward to welcoming all to Derby Riverlights. We wanted to help by giving space to this event and it's been great to make this happen in the heart of the city centre with the University."

Whitbread to open hotel and restaurant in Derby

Whitbread and Moorfield Real Estate Fund III have agreed terms to bring a new Premier Inn hotel and Thyme restaurant to Bondholder Derby Riverlights.

The new hotel will take over the space currently occupied by Hampton by Hilton and shall include 138 rooms as well as high-quality conference facilities. The Thyme restaurant will serve a mix of traditional and contemporary dishes.

We are currently in conversations with other potential occupiers and are confident that Riverlights will offer a popular and diverse range of restaurants, bars and leisure operators in due course
— Charles Ferguson Davie, Moorfield Group

John Bates, Head of Acquisitions (South) for Premier Inn said: “We are delighted to be bringing forward a new 138-bedroom Premier Inn to the Derby Riverlights development - breathing new life into the former Hampton hotel as a brand new Premier Inn. As well as delivering another fantastic location for our customers, it will contribute to the success and vitality of Derby’s city centre and we look forward to opening our doors to customers in early 2016."

Charles Ferguson Davie, Moorfield, said: “Premier Inn will be the first of a host of new occupiers at Riverlights. Since we acquired the building in May it was been our aim to ensure the area becomes a key leisure destination in the city centre. We are currently in conversations with other potential occupiers and are confident that Riverlights will offer a popular and diverse range of restaurants, bars and leisure operators in due course."

Following the latest lettings, a further 15,500 square feet of space is available at The Boulevard at Riverlights which comprises a mix of retail, bar and restaurant units ranging from 3,600 to 8,000 in size, each with a significant amount of outdoor seating.