To infinity and beyond

Derby City Council has signed a collaboration agreement with the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership and one of the world’s leading manufacturing research institutions to open a new facility on Infinity Park Derby, the city’s Enterprise Zone.

Proposals have been approved to enable the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) to establish a new 50,000 sq ft base on Infinity Park which will be an extension of the existing iHub and allow more new technologies to be delivered regionally.
This will establish a new multi-million pound innovation facility at Infinity Park, the 100-acre manufacturing-focused commercial and technology site located next to the world headquarters of Rolls-Royce civil aerospace.

AMRC was established by the University of Sheffield in 2001 and has developed into a cluster of innovation centres focusing on the UK’s key engineering industries.
It recently helped secure more than £100m in inward investment to the Sheffield City region from Boeing, Rolls-Royce and McLaren and is looking to replicate its success with the new research centre at Infinity Park, which it hopes will attract firms seeking to develop new technologies to the city.

The agreement will support Derby City Council and D2N2’s bold strategy for improving the region’s economic growth, skills and jobs whilst the site will receive Catapult Centre status as a nationally-recognised centre for hi-tech research and business growth.
D2N2 is allocating £12.9million to Infinity Park from its Local Growth Fund allocation over six years to help improve infrastructure on the site.

Commenting on the agreement, Councillor Martin Rawson, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and the Economy, said: “The iHub is a real beacon for innovation and growth and is now home to some of the most inspiring SMEs from across the UK’s planes, trains and automobiles sector. With Rolls-Royce and many other of high-tech companies in the area, it makes perfect sense to house the new innovation centre close by on Infinity Park.”

“We hope that AMRC’s expertise for research and innovation, coupled with the city’s strong skills base, will reinforce Derby’s reputation as the go-to place for global manufacturing companies and act as a catalyst for attracting even more high-tech engineering and manufacturing companies to Infinity Park.”
Andrew Storer, CEO of AMRC’s energy centre, added: “AMRC aims to build a world-class manufacturing base here in the UK. We have succeeded in making the Sheffield City Region a magnet for inward investment. Now, with the support of Derby City Council and D2N2 we hope to have the same impact here at Infinity Park.”

“The new Derby facility has the potential for cross-sector activities, which we hope will enable us to expand our work into new areas of research.”

Landmark future for Derby

Landmark Future for Derby

Godwin Developments has unveiled plans for a 200-unit £32m PRS scheme for Derby city centre. Following a public consultation which took place on Monday 16th April, plans are due to be submitted by the end of the month for the building, which, at 17 storeys, would be Derby’s tallest. The plans follow 12 months of pre-planning for the site which is a brownfield location on the North Riverside part of the city centre.

The scheme is likely to incorporate facilities such as a gym, concierge, 24hr reception, cinema room and residents’ lounges. Solar panels, electric car charging points, bike schemes and Amazon lockers are also expected to feature.

Stephen Pratt, Director at Godwin Developments said, “We are really excited to be bringing this scheme to Derby. The economic, social and cultural regeneration of the city centre is impressive and we believe The Landmark will be a market-leading city living development.”

John Forkin, Managing Director at Marketing Derby, said, “We are thrilled to see these plans for an iconic residential development that makes a statement about the ambitions of Derby to be seen as a progressive, 21st century city.”

PRS Approval for Derby

A 105-unit PRS development has received planning approval in Derby city centre.

The apartments, split between two blocks, reach a height of 13 storeys and overlook the River Derwent from Derby’s North Riverside and will provide high-quality, long-term rental accommodation for professionals in the city. With Derby’s hi-tech economy, high average workplace salaries and graduate workforce, this type of accommodation is extremely important to providing suitable homes for the labour market.

Derby City Council Planning Committee member, Cllr Baggy Shanker, said, “We want Derby to be a vibrant and modern city. We need modern city centre living to meet the demands of our city and its residents. It’s schemes like this that will turn us into a vibrant city.”

Tom Erskine, Inward Investment Executive at Marketing Derby said, “It’s important for Derby to have a variety of housing tenures, and we are severely under-served in high quality city living options. It is therefore vital that brownfield sites like this, which provide an opportunity for quality regeneration, are built on with the sort of accommodation that people want. The size of these sites demand density in development and, the influx of 150 residents to this part of the city will have an extremely positive impact on the safety and economy of the area around it.”

New Apartments for City Centre

Another 100 apartments have gone on sale in Derby City Centre, as part of the second phase of the Heritage Gate development. 

The first phase of the project sold-out within a couple of months, and brought a total of 86 newly-converted apartments to Derby.

The development, an office to residential conversion, is being developed by UK-based property business, Regency Residential.

Paul Birds, branch partner at Bagshaws Residential who are dealing with enquiries for the apartment, said: "I think the apartments have been so popular because of the location, it is in the heart of the city centre and also because there is allocated parking, one space per apartment, as well.

"There has been a mixture of people wanting to make investments and first-time buyers as well so they're really appealing to both markets. People are impressed with the size of some of the flats and the quality too."



Rolls-Royce's Billion Dollar Orders

Rolls-Royce has won an order from Hawaiian Airlines for Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engines to power an additional Airbus A330 aircraft, supported by Rolls-Royce’s engine service, TotalCare®.

The airline already operates 23 Rolls-Royce powered A330 aircraft, and has previously placed an order for six A330neo aircraft, to be powered by the Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engine.

Marc Kup, senior director fleet transactions, Hawaiian Airlines, said: “We are very pleased to have selected the Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engine to power our new Airbus A330. This has proved to be a winning combination for us, delivering impressive efficiency and durability.”

Lewis Prebble, Rolls-Royce, senior vice president, customers – civil aerospace, said: “Hawaiian Airlines is a valued customer that continues to develop its fleet for future growth. We are delighted to be part of that story through the Trent 700 engine, which has proven itself to be the engine of choice for A330 customers.”

Earlier this month, Rolls-Royce was awarded a $1.7bn order from Singapore Airlines for Trent 1000 engines to power 19 Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft. The engines will be covered by Rolls-Royce’s flagship engine service, TotalCare®.

The order builds on a decades-long strong relationship between Rolls-Royce and Singapore Airlines. In addition to the Trent 1000, operated by its subsidiary Scoot, Singapore Airlines also operates the Trent XWB, Trent 900, Trent 800 and Trent 700.

intu's £3.5 Million Investment

Bondholder intu Derby has invested £3.5 million into their new leisure schemes. 

The shopping centre will play host to an indoor golf facility, and an American-themed bowling alley. 

Paradise Island Adventure Golf will allow players to choose from two 18-hole golf course, set amid a tropical Island.

Craig Nichol, Marketing Manager at Paradise Island Adventure Golf, said: “We’re really looking forward to introducing our indoor adventure golf concept to Derby this year. Adventure golf is fast becoming one of the most popular attractions on the UK leisure scene and there is currently nothing like this available in the area, so to be able to bring a new leisure experience is really exciting.

Hollywood Bowl offers patrons an American-themed bowling experience, as well a Hollywood diner featuring gourmet burgers. 

The 18 lane bowling complex will create up to 30 new jobs. 

Steve Burns, CEO at The Hollywood Bowl Group, said: "As the UK's largest bowling company, we're delighted to be opening a brand new centre in Derby.

"We are very excited to be bringing our new, state-of-the-art entertainment venue to Derby."

Marketing Derby Joins the British Property Federation

Marketing Derby has joined the British Property Federation, the trade association for UK residential and commercial real estate companies.

The BPF “works with Government and regulatory bodies to help the real estate industry grow and thrive, to the benefit of its members and the economy as a whole.”. It comments regularly on proposed Government policies that will impact its members, including topics such as infrastructure, and Build-to-Rent development.

After attending the BPF's conference in 2016, Marketing Derby found its works in the fields of regeneration and development fitted well with some of the key priorities of the Federation, and its members. 

STEM Building Reaches Completion

Celebrations have taken place this week at the University of Derby’s new £12.5 million STEM building following completion on site by contractor Willmott Dixon.

The new building focuses on real-world learning, combining functional space with infrastructure designed for the specific needs of engineering and computing studies.

The STEM building has increased the size of the university’s existing site at Markeaton Street by 30 percent, creating much-needed space on the campus.

Hari Punchihewa, deputy chief executive and finance director at the University of Derby, said: “We are thrilled that the work on our STEM facility by Willmott Dixon is complete.

“It is an outstanding centre, setting the University of Derby apart from other institutions, and an environment which will allow our students to gain first-class academic knowledge in science, technology, engineering and mathematics and also to carry out research work using state-of- the-art equipment and laboratories.

“We look forward to being able to use the building and sharing the facility with current and prospective students”.

Chris Hufford, operations director at Willmott Dixon, said: “We are extremely proud to have been part of this project which has transformed the University of Derby’s campus and enhanced its teaching facilities. The new STEM building is a great example of our commitment to BIM and its multitude of benefits, utilising BIM helped our teams to work strategically throughout the construction process and achieve a high-quality finish we are proud of”.

The new STEM building has been constructed to Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodology (BREEAM) “Very Good” standards.

Estates Gazette Eyes Masterplan

The regeneration of Derby city centre is set to take off as the national press starts to focus on the opportunities available.

Estates Gazette has featured the city as a prime example of regional opportunities for regeneration projects, with key sites such as the Assembly Rooms, Becket Well, Middleton House and Riverlights 2 attracting much of the attention.

The Assembly Rooms site, also featuring the Market Place and Market Hall, will be the location for a new performance venue with a range of options on the table. Replacing the existing Assembly Rooms building, the scheme is earmarked for a performance venue that will rejuvenate the heart of the city.

Becket Well has been earmarked for regeneration for over 20 years and seems set to finally be brought forward. With Derby City Council close to finalising the purchase of the former Debenhams department store, a package of potential retail, leisure and residential opportunities will be brought to market in 2017.

With Riverlights 2 still under discussion for a potential bus station extension, Middleton House is the final site and is set to come to market in early 2017. Situated at the heart of the historic Cathedral Quarter, this 35,693 sq ft former office space has a Grade II Listed front and has the potential to be converted into an outstanding residential opportunity.

For further information about any of these sites, please contact Tom Erskine at

Property Week's Retail Hotspot

The latest edition of the annual Hot 100 Retail Locations has been published by Property Week, and sees Derby as the highest-ranked location in the East Midlands.

Ranked in 21st place, Derby is seen as an outstanding location for retail investment potential, with a large population catchment area and its existing retail offer.

The city has seen its retail sector perform strongly in 2016 with new openings from national brands such as Dr Marten’s, Joules, Cath Kidston and MAC, whilst the independent sector has also grown with new openings alongside expansions.

This is set to continue with brands such as Jack Wills also due to open in the city. The potential is there for significantly more premium brands to locate to Derby in the near future.

If you are keen to explore why Derby is an excellent location for premium retail brands, please contact Jimmy Drew or Tom Erskine at Marketing Derby via or

Derbyshire in China

A delegation of Derby and Derbyshire businesses and civic leaders, travelled to China in November, as part of a wider Midlands Engine trade and investment mission.

They visited China with the aims of furthering civic and economic partnerships with the city of Hefei in Anhui province, which could potentially boost trade and tourism. They also furthered university to university partnerships, which could bring Chinese students and visitors to Derby.

Councillor Ranjit Banwait, leader of Derby City Council, said: “This is a big opportunity for the city, China is a superpower and we’ve got the opportunity to do business with them. This is our opportunity to be part of the world stage and to sit alongside the greatest cities in the world.”

Councillor Martin Rawson, deputy leader of Derby City Council, said: “This partnership will open doors to so many opportunities for business, investment, culture and tourism. The visit is a very strong statement of intent and the synergies between the Derby and Derbyshire offer. The opportunities in Hefei and Anhui are very clear.”

The delegation, was received extremely well with a Memorandum of Understanding signed by both cities and regions to allow collaboration and innovation between all parties to get underway, whilst the Universities signed agreements of their own as well.

The visit was part of the Midlands Engine mission, co-ordinated by the China-Britain Business Council, which saw delegations from cities across the Midlands meeting with partners across China, before coming together in Shanghai to present a united front to Chinese civic and business leaders and investors.

Derby at the Ritz

In preparation for MIPIM UK, Marketing Derby held a private investor reception at the Ritz on Tuesday evening, to showcase why Derby is an excellent opportunity for investment.

In a demonstration of the city's successful private-public partnership approach, ambassadors from Derby's public and private sectors came together with UK investors and developers to highlight some of the city's recent development successes and pipeline projects, as well as the next wave of opportunities. 

Speaking at the event, Managing Director John Forkin said: "Derby has already attracted £3bn of investment, but the city is still a work in progress, which is why we are delighted to see so many colleagues from the investment community."


Following a welcome from Deputy Leader of Derby City Council, Cllr Martin Rawson, guests heard from John Forkin, managing director of Marketing Derby, and Paul Harris, Director of Economic Development at Rolls-Royce plc, who spoke about the importance of its Derby HQ in its global operations, its investment plans for the city, including a civil aerospace campus, and its support for Derby's Enterprise Zone, Infinity Park Derby which, with its position alongside Rolls-Royce's civil aerospace HQ, will be a key site for the UK's advanced manufacturing sectors.

Derby heads to MIPIM UK

A delegation of public and private sector representatives from Derby, led by Marketing Derby, is exhibiting at London property convention MIPIM UK this week.

The delegation includes representatives from Marketing Derby, Derby City Council, Cushman & Wakefield and Smith Partnership

Held at the Olympia in London, MIPIM UK is the UK’s largest exhibition and conference for property professionals. Derby has exhibited at the conference since its inception, showcasing the city’s latest development opportunities. 

This year, the next wave of opportunities available in Derby, including Derby City Council sites coming to market, and development opportunities at Derby’s Enterprise Zone, Infinity Park Derby, will be discussed with investors at MIPIM UK.

John Forkin, Managing Director of Marketing Derby, said: “Two years ago we attended the first MIPIM UK to be held in London, where we launched a campaign to attract residential investment to support Derby’s growth ambitions.

“We had a tremendous response and some of the buildings recently constructed, or currently going through planning, are a direct result of this.

“This year we are focusing on the City Centre Masterplan to raise awareness of opportunities and Derby City Council sites about to come to market.”



Bright future for St James' Yard

Plans have been submitted to Derby City Council for a new 11,000 sq ft leisure destination in Derby’s historic Cathedral Quarter.

Situated close to existing operators such as Turtle Bay, Revolution and Walkabout, St James’ Yard consists of two tram sheds in a state of disrepair which landowner, Clowes Developments, proposes to renovate to provide character buildings for entertainment and retail use. 

The plans are currently being considered by Derby City Council and, if approved, could lead to a second phase of work at the site. This would comprise the removal of the adjacent car park and construction of new build units to provide space for eating and drinking.  A new access point will also be created from The Strand.

The aim of the project is to transform St James’ Yard into a lively “central piazza”.

Premium retail expansion

Following on from openings by Dr Marten’s and Joules, two further retail giants have announced their imminent arrival in Derby.

Cath Kidston are set to open in the intu Derby shopping centre, whilst Jack Wills are currently recruiting for a new shop in the city’s Cathedral Quarter.

Their arrival continues the trend of premium retailers coming to Derby as confidence grows in the city as a retail destination.

Tom Erskine, Inward Investment Executive at Marketing Derby, said "The arrival of brands like White Stuff, Office and Dr Martens will have been noted by other brands who were looking at Derby. Joules, Cath Kidston and Jack Wills will be following them here - having seen that Derby can be successful for them as well."

Derby was named in research by CACI for Property Week earlier this year as a Top 10 location for premium retail opportunity.

Mr Erskine said: "Their analysis shows Derby as a top ten location for premium retail opportunity. When organisations like that start giving the same message as the city does, in addition to successful trading by brands already here, the decision is much easier for premium retailers."

Meet us at MIPIM UK

Derby will be in attendance at MIPIM UK in October, once again representing the city at the UK’s largest property sector exhibition.

Held at London Olympia for a third consecutive year, the exhibition (October 19th – October 21st) provides inward investment agencies from across the country the opportunity to showcase the major investment and development opportunities available in their areas.

Derby has also been asked to present a Business Showcase to MIPIM UK delegates, and will talk about the new Derby-Nottingham Metropolitan Strategy with colleagues from Nottingham.

We are keen to meet with attendees so please contact us to arrange time to have a chat about the exciting opportunities coming forward in Derby.

Please email Tom Erskine at or Jimmy Drew at for further information.

MIPIM 2017 Midlands collaboration

Planning continues following the announcement that the inward investment agencies for the Midlands will come together as one team under the Midlands Engine banner at MIPIM, the world's largest commercial property fair, to be held in Cannes in 2017.

The government announced £375,000 as a contribution to a Midlands Pavilion for the next three years, matching the £750,000 being committed by the agencies.

Sir John Peace, Chairman of the Midlands Engine, said: "I believe we are now ready to very clearly and very loudly speak with one united voice on the world's stage. We believe it’s important to show a united front on the international stage and collaboration between inward investment agencies is increasing.”

Derby will be part of the Midlands Pavilion at Cannes in 2017, where it will showcase the city’s latest development opportunities.

The Midlands Engine's vision is to bring 300,000 jobs and £34 billion to the UK economy.

SME growth amongst UK's best

A £4.7 billion boost to Derby’s economy is set to come from the growing number of small and medium-sized businesses in the city, according to research for Npower Business by Capital Economics which sees the city as a Top-15 rated city for SME growth.

Derby has seen significant growth over the last six years with the number of SMEs increasing by 19% with the creation of 5,600 jobs and £4.1 billion to the city’s economy. The next four years will see an additional 5,000 created and an additional £4.7 billion a year by 2020, according to the research.

The city is attractive to SMEs due to a low cost of living, good broadband connectivity, Enterprise Zone and low business rates all of which has already seen Derby voted the best place to open a business in the UK in research done by Quality Formations earlier this year.

Derby is recognised as a hub for some of the fastest-growing SME sectors including architecture, engineering, health, education and machinery repair. Growth is supported by the Local Enterprise Partnership for the area, D2N2, which provides specialist advice on training, growth and funding.

Philip Scholes, head of Npower Business, said, “SMEs have been the backbone of the UK economy, and as this research shows, there is significant opportunity for them to grow further in the coming years ahead.”

Serjeants expands into Derby

Left to right: Dean Lacey and Darran Thacker.

Patent and trade mark attorneys Serjeants has announced the next phase of its expansion with the opening of its new Derby office, after support from the teams at Marketing Derby and Bondholder Connect Derby.

Serjeants has identified Derby as the ideal location for its next strategic move and was the first tenant to sign a contract for office space at Bondholder Connect Derby's iHub building on Infinity Park.

Darran Thacker, Partner at Serjeants, said: "Derby has long been the high-tech manufacturing capital of the East Midlands. We work closely with engineering businesses and the opening of the iHub, which is dedicated to supporting supply chain businesses for leading OEMs, provided us with the ideal opportunity to find a location close to the businesses we enjoy working with."

Jimmy Drew, Inward Investment Executive at Marketing Derby, said: "Having worked closely with Serjeants it was clear from the outset that the iHub was a great location for them, based on their requirements, and we'd like to wish them every success in their new home."

The Derby office will be led by partners Darran Thacker and Dean Lacey.

City reveals venue options

Derby’s plan to replace the Assembly Rooms moved a step closer this week when Derby City Council revealed two options now under serious consideration. 

The first is a 3,000-seat music venue and the second, larger option, includes a 1,600 seat theatre in addition to the music venue, capable of hosting west-end productions.

Describing it as a 'game-changer' for Derby, Martin Rawson, Deputy Leader of Derby City Council said: “The venue will bring footfall and spend into the city.”

Both options will mean the demolition of the Assembly Rooms, which closed following a fire in 2014. An application for first phase funding, including demolition and meanwhile use, has been made to the Local Growth Fund via the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership. The bid is now under consideration by the government.

The venue could cost up to £80m and is a key part of the wider City Centre Masterplan launched this summer. This includes replacing the Debenhams building and releasing disused sites currently under Council ownership, as well as investment into the city’s two markets. 

Martin Rawson said: “Successful city centres are drivers of local and national economies and I want Derby to become known as a great place to live, work and play."

The venue will bring footfall and spend into the city.
— Martin Rawson, Deputy Leader of Derby City Council
Successful city centres are drivers of local and national economies and I want Derby to become known as a great place to live, work and play.
— Martin Rawson, Deputy Leader of Derby City Council