Roundhouse Events

East Midlands Railway launches

The prestigious launch of the new East Midlands Railway franchise was held yesterday at one of the world’s most iconic railway buildings, Derby College’s Roundhouse.

The Management team announced for East Midlands Railway, with headquarters in Derby, will be headed on an interim basis by Julian Edwards, Deputy MD of Abellio UK, to ensure a successful launch of the new franchise. Julian has promised ‘easier journeys, every day’ with an investment of £600m.

Will Rogers will join as Managing Director of EMR in January 2020.

Will is currently Managing Director of Arriva Rail London, operator of London Overground, and led the successful mobilisation of the Concession and the first three years of operation. In his time in the rail industry he has worked with manufacturers such as Alstom, Bombardier and Siemens, transport authorities such as TfL and DfT, financiers, operators, advisers, maintainers and the Office of Rail and Road.

Other members of the new EMR executive team are Finance Director - Tim Gledhill; Operations Director - Darren Ward; Commercial Director - Lawrence Bowman; Customer Services Director - Neil Grabham; Fleet Director - Chris Wright; Transition & Projects Director - Lisa Angus; HSSE Director - Paul Rushton; and Human Resources Director - Kirsty Derry.

These appointments will help support Abellio’s ambitions for the East Midlands Railway to deliver easier journeys as Abellio invests over £600 million to give passengers more seats, more services, better stations and new trains.

Marketing Derby MD, John Forkin, who attended the event commented “We welcome Abellio’s emphasis on investment & in particular the fact they have chosen Derby as their East Midlands Railway HQ and really look forward to working closely with the team."


Photo Credit: AV’IT Media


Finalists revealed for Food & Drink Awards

The finalists for the 11th Marketing Derby Food & Drink Awards have been revealed! Let's take a look at who's lucky enough to be in the running to be crowned the city's finest...

Restaurant of the Year
The Palfrey
Lotus Indian Kitchen
The Wonky Table

Best café
The Coffee House at Derby Museums
The Squashed Tomato
Derby QUAD Café

Excellence in Customer Service
Remember this award is voted for by YOU, via the Derby Telegraph
Milk & Honey Deli
Katherine's Gift & Coffee Bar
Elements Tea & Coffee House
The Exeter Arms
Lisa Jean at Bennetts
Kava Coffee Bar

Best bar
The Orange Tree
The Palfrey
Suds and Soda

Best pub
The Bell & Castle
The Blessington Carriage
The Dog & Moon

Most family friendly
The Coffee House at Derby Museums
Bluebell Dairy cafe

Best newcomer
Annie's Burger Shack
The Creaky Floorboard
Elements Tea & Coffee House

Best international
La Pizza
Annie's Burger Shack

Best out of town - the competition was so high, we have four finalists in this category!
Cock Inn at Mugginton
Vegan Revelation
Amalfi White
The Shed at Hilton

Congratulations to this year's finalists!

The winners will be announced at the Roundhouse on the 7th October at an exciting ceremony with guest speakers, food and drink stalls (The Market Place) and more!

Everyone is invited to the awards ceremony, so if you would like to attend simply register here


Market Place stallholders

The Derby Food & Drink Awards is pleased to welcome a range of local food and drink businesses who will be exhibiting in 'The Market Place' at the Roundhouse on 7th October.

Guests will have the opportunity to try some tasty samples from the likes of Doughnotts, Highfield Drinks Group, Ashbourne Bakehouse, The Gin and Rum Festival, Burrows & Sturgess and Bluebells ice cream, as well as being able to purchase delicious wood-fired pizza from Biddulph's Pizzeria.

On hand to offer advice on kitchen equipment will be Cattermole Electrical, Rational AG, Robot Coupe, Krupps, Maidaid Halcyon & Foster Refrigeration.


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


Bondholder partnership boost

Bondholder Roundhouse Events has launched a new initiative to network with other events companies in the area to boost communication and referrals.

Meeting with a series of events companies once a month, with the aim of ensuring that event bookings are retained in Derby, the group has been co-created by Helen Vann, Sales Manager at Bondholder Pentahotel and Amy Wicks, Conference and Events Manager at Roundhouse Events.

Amy said "The aim of the group is to ensure Derby venues work together in collaboration to service the needs of companies and individuals looking to hire quality event space.

“There are many fantastic venues in Derby and we want to ensure that we service the needs of businesses and the community by offering suitable, quality space to host their event."

Helen added "It's a great way to get to know the people behind other Derby venues and hotels. It will enable all of us to work together, share best practise and, as a result, will enhance the offering across Derby as a city".

The group is made up of representatives from Bondholders Derby Conference Centre, Derbyshire County Cricket Club, Derby City Council, QUAD, Deda, Jurys Inn, Derby County Football Club, Derby Museums and the University of Derby, along with Visit Derby, Hallmark Hotel, Riverside Centre and the Cathedral Quarter Hotel.

To register your interest in becoming part of the group, please contact


Business Awards finalists announced

Bondholder East Midlands Chamber has announced the finalists for the Derbyshire Business Awards 2019 - we're pleased to see so many of our Bondholders are finalists.

The Derbyshire Business Awards bring together businesses from across the region and beyond to promote the outstanding work which Derbyshire businesses undertake every day.

The 2019 Derbyshire Business Awards Gala Dinner will take place on the 6th September at Pride Park Stadium.

There will be 13 awards presented across a range of categories, as well as the prestigious Business of the Year award. Winners of selected categories from the evening could go on to compete in the national British Chamber of Commerce (BCC) awards which take place in November.

Here is the list of Bondholder finalists:

Business Improvement Through Technology (make headers bold)
Bloc Digital
Bowmer and Kirkland

Community Impact Award
RDS Global
Purpose Media
Loates HR

Business Venue of the Year - New for 2019
The Derby Conference Centre
The Roundhouse

Commitment to People Development
Air IT
Talk Staff

Entrepreneur of the Year
Simon Rice – HSG UK
Amanda Strong – Mercia Image Print

Apprentice of the Year
Jess Frearson – Future proof Films
Autumn Parkinson - Sky Recruitment Solutions

Excellence in Customer Service
Air IT
Purpose Media

Small Business of the Year
Rhodes Wealth Management
Timms Solicitors

Manufacturer of the Year
Work Wallet

Good luck to all of the finalists!


Food & Drink Awards to launch

This Friday sees the launch of the 11th annual Marketing Derby Derby Food & Drink Awards, which shine a light on Derby's food & drink sector, promoting the fantastic hospitality we have on offer here in the city and wider county.

Last year, over 5,000 nominations were received, this year's will open at 5pm on Friday 28th June, and you can cast your vote by visiting the Derby Food & Drink Awards website.

Managing Director of Marketing Derby, John Forkin said "Food and drink is an important sector but a tough one too. We want to celebrate the best and promote customer growth.”

The awards ceremony will take place on Monday 7th October at Bondholder Derby Roundhouse.

Nominations are welcomed from members of the public, business leaders in the city and food and drink establishment owners. The nomination period is open for four weeks and the entries are used to select the three finalists in each category.

Two representatives from each sponsor will judge their category, which involves ‘mystery shopping’ at all three finalists and scoring against defined criteria.

The awards ceremony will be attended by over 400 industry representatives from Derby, including food and drink establishments and business leaders from across the city. To book your ticket, please click here.


Why don’t we relocate Parliament to the Derby Roundhouse?

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Why don’t we relocate Parliament to the Derby Roundhouse?

I know, we love a bit of ambition but really?

I’d like to think there is method in the madness so bear with me while I build my case…

Last month, on Thursday 4 th April 2019 to be exact, the House of Commons was holding a debate on how HMRC might reclaim unpaid taxes when water began to drip, then pour, through the Chamber’s roof, soaking MPs. Pretty quickly it was realised this needed serious attention and so the sitting was suspended for the day.

The symbolism of the leaky roof and consequent abandoned debate was not lost.

Something is rotten in the Palace of Westminster but it’s going to take more than a bucket and lick of paint to fix it.

I don’t just mean the building itself – which on the evidence from my recent visit appears near to collapse – but, there is also a growing sense that our whole parliamentary democratic system is need of fundamental review and overhaul.

Now, this isn’t a column on Brexit (I gave my take on that dream in the winter 2018 edition of Agenda) but the Brexit debacle – its origins, the referendum and subsequent parliamentary sclerosis – has exposed our political processes to a kind of test to destruction, which it is failing.

The rest of the world has been watching us with a mix of, first amusement and more recently concern, as debate after debate ends in deadlock. That logjam may be forgivable - and at some point it will surely be broken - but the daily circus of the Punch and Judy show put on by many MPs, together with tired idiosyncratic conventions, does not reflect a healthy modern 21st century democracy.

In fact, the Speaker - sitting in an oversized chair belching out instructions about the ‘ayes having it’ and ‘unlocking the doors’ - has become something of an international oddity. He is mimicked apparently by schoolchildren across the world, thinking they are watching some new version of Harry Potter.

For many, the leaky roof was a metaphor too far.

The political stability and pragmatism of the UK, so often lauded as an exemplar, is getting lost.

Both the House of Commons and Lords are divided, political parties are divided, as are communities and even families.

Instability and uncertainty has suddenly become the norm as people try to match the apparent normality of their day-to-day with the psycho-drama played out on TV most evenings.

My point being that Brexit has turned out to mean many things, except perhaps Brexit. It has become a de facto proxy for something, anything, else, much of which has sat beneath for years, or even decades, and is only now beginning to surface.


This includes feelings of being left behind by the progress of globalisation. It includes fear of change and fear of the unknown, underpinned by inequalities in wealth and power. These fears are real, many people are genuinely concerned for themselves, their families, friends and communities.

Some say that the cause of the current edgy zeitgeist lies in the 2008 crash, which I’ve always described not so much as an economic heart attack but an economic stroke with random and unpredictable consequences expressed over time.

I suspect the roots are much deeper; 2001 and its subsequent War on Terror, the 1989 ending of the Cold War and its ‘end of history’, even 1945 and the victory of World War 2.

Truth is, we do not have the benefit of the perspective of distance and time furnished to historians in the future but I do know that this period will be closely studied, analysed and argued over for centuries.

The current angst didn’t just happen overnight just as it won’t be solved whenever Brexit is.

Which brings me back to the rotten state of Parliament – the palace as a property, the democratic process and the Derby Roundhouse.

I’ve visited the Palace of Westminster many, many times.

On my first visit, as an 18-year-old student, I was absorbed by its history, gothic grandeur and hushed and heavy corridors whispering the DNA of democracy.

A few weeks ago, on my most recent visit, I was shocked by its sheer shabbiness, the sense of chaos outside and inside as well as the broken tiles covered in gaffer tape - you know, the type generally found in cheap supermarkets not in one of the homes of democracy.

Isn’t it time to address not just the physical renewal of the Palace but also to re-engage our democracy with the people it represents?

Now, there is a plan to renew the whole parliamentary estate and, like all UK grand projects, it has been talked about for ages. Its costs escalate quicker than Lionel Messi’s goal tally – current figure is £4bn, though I’d suspect nearer £10bn when all said and done – but no substantive work has been undertaken as the Place of Westminster is a workplace visited by over 1million people each year.

The plan is to shut the whole building down for the period of work, estimated at 10 years. To start this, both Houses were meant to decant in 2022, though the earliest date being discussed now seems to be 2028.

The terrible fire at the Notre Dame in Paris has acted as an alarm bell for many (the Palace of Westminster has roughly 10 fires start up somewhere on the estate each year) introducing some urgency into the process.

Meantime, in London, they debate about where both Houses might sit during the decant – candidates include the Queen Elizabeth Conference Centre, Richmond House or even a pop-up on Horse Guards.

Now, here is a thought - why don’t we take Parliament on tour, at least for the duration of the works?

If our democracy is broken, if people feel disconnected, if there is a north-south divide, if there is fear of the break-up of the UK, then why not move the legislature out for a decade and engage with the regions?

As things stand, the legislature is moving a mere few yards away at vast expense and the cosy Westminster bubble remains unaffected, many would say disconnected.

Just as the FA moved England’s football games around the country whilst Wembley was rebuilt (the game against Mexico at Pride Park Stadium still holds the attendance record) so could both Houses sit, for periods of six months at a time, in buildings located across the country.

A competition could be held to identify the 40 locations required and, of course, in Derby we could easily offer the Roundhouse or the Derby Arena – both perfect for parliamentary sessions in the round (a structure found in all democracies except our antiquated adversarial face-to- face Chamber as it happens).

I know there are logistical issues; safety, security, capacity etc etc but I simply don’t buy easy SW1 bleating.

Many countries base their political capital away from their biggest cities (Australia, Brazil, Canada and the United States for example) and I see nothing but positive reasons as why the UK should at least flirt with the idea. Is it really such an outrageous thought that we should not even consider it?

If successful, the Upper House could remain on permanent tour with the current location of the House of Lords becoming an income generating tourism attraction.

Yes, the economic benefit of such a move for the regions would be great and in many respects rebalancing the economy should be argument enough.

However, I feel the real benefit of Parliament on Tour may not be best measured in GDP and GVA but rather in a reimagining of politics, with a re-engagement between Parliament and the taxpaying communities, a midwifing if you like of our political system into the 21 st century.

Still Capturing Reality

It’s a year since Bondholder Mixed Realities, now known as V21, completed their first 3D Virtual Tour of Bondholder Derby College’s iconic Roundhouse, for Bondholder Roundhouse Events. This work went on to inspire them to create an innovative and engaging interactive map, featuring 14 virtual tours of spaces in Derby, including Bondholders Derby Cathedral Tower, Derby Museums and Art Gallery, Pickford’s House and of course The Roundhouse. They have recently added Banks Mill Studios to the map, capturing all 5 floors, containing 30 creative studios.

In the summer they went on to successfully experiment how to create a fully immersive CGI/VR environment using the data capture from the original laser scan of the Roundhouse. The result, an amazing tool for visualisation and redevelopment projects, presented at the FBE event at The Roundhouse with Bondholder Maber, in September 2017.

Since September 2017, V21 Artspace has presented over 20 Virtual Exhibitions for Galleries and Museums in Derby, Nottingham and London. including the one-time only world exclusive “Dinosaurs of China - Ground Shakers To Feathered Flyers” exhibited at Nottingham Wollaton Hall and Nottingham Lakeside Arts from July to October 2017. In December 2017 they branched out to the US. New York based associate, Sylvia Mead, already has 2 exhibitions under her belt, captured at Art Basel Miami. They are excited to be presenting their first New York virtual exhibition very soon and are collaborating with some major organisations on upcoming projects.

From late February their space at 21 Cornmarket will be used as exhibition space, V21 Gallery. They are hosting an opening exhibition “Life & Death” by artists David Booth MRBS and Keith Newlove. The exhibition launches on Friday 23rd February 2018 details of opening times can be found here. They will produce a 3D Virtual Exhibition making it accessible to anyone unable to visit.

Owners, Claire Cutts and Joe Clark, wholeheartedly agree that even though the last year has been a major challenge, as it is for any start-up business, this has been massively outweighed by having the opportunity to with some amazing Bondholders in Derby, including Derby Museums, Quad and Mainframe.

View the work of V21 below:

Interactive MapBanks Mill Studios, The Roundhouse, Dinosaurs of China, V21 Space, V21 Artspace