Blue Plaques - the second six

Alison Uttley - winner of a 2011 blue plaque

The second six plaques as chosen by the Derbyshire public in 2011 are as below and are being put in place throughout 2012. Below the nominators of this year's winners explain why Derbyshire's finest deserve to be recognised and honoured.

You can now submit your nominations for the plaques to be erected in 2013. Nominate online or by completing the form in the June 2012 edition of Derbyshire First.


William Barron nominated by Rosemary Woodhouse of Breaston.

Commenting on the award Rosemary said: "At last a blue plaque brings William Barron from Borrowash long overdue recognition.

"He was an innovative gardener responsible for creating the delightful gardens at Elvaston Castle using previously unheard of techniques. These gardens remain a great source of enjoyment for visitors who regard the park as the 'Peoples Playground'."

Sir Henry Royce nominated by Bryan Harris of Quarndon

On behalf of Quarndon Parish Council, Bryan Harris said: "I'm delighted that our nomination for a blue plaque has been successful.

"Sir Henry Royce - co-founder of Rolls-Royce - ranks as one of Derbyshire's most distinguished adopted sons. During his three-year stay in at The Knoll (now Quarndon House), he presided over one of the most prestigious industrial developments in the history of the county."

Samuel Slater nominated by Rosemary Timms of Milford

Rosemary said: "It's really good news. Samuel's story is one of enterprise and intrigue.

"I nominated him for a Derbyshire blue plaque following a research project and collaboration for the film 'Samuel Slater - Hero or Traitor?'

"I hope this blue plaque will enlighten future generations of his significance. He was an apprenticeship in Jedidiah Strutt's Cotton Mill, Belper. But he made his fortune in America by betraying the secret of Richard Arkwright's "water frame" and developing the factory system.

John Smedley nominated by Peter Wild of the Matlock Civic Association

Speaking on behalf of the Association, Peter said: "We're delighted that John Smedley - Matlock's locally famous textile entrepreneur and keen hydrotherapist - is to be honoured with a commemorative plaque.

"In 1853, he set up Smedley's Hydro. Its rapid growth spawned other hydropathic establishments and associated development. Within fifty years, Matlock had grown into a very fashionable inland spa. His legacy is still with us."

Alison Uttley nominated by Gilly and Simon Groom of Dethick

"All the nominees were worthy of such an award. But we are thrilled that so many people have voted for Alison Uttley," said Gilly and Simon.

"She wrote over 100 books, most of them inspired by her early life in the Derbyshire countryside. They have been published and broadcast all over the world. Her first Little Grey Rabbit book was published in 1929. Thank you to everyone who voted for her.

Sir Joseph Whitworth nominated by Peter Wood of Oakerthorpe

"Sir Joseph Whitworth is thoroughly deserving of a blue plaque award," said Peter. "When I relocated my studio to the Wheelhouse at Amber Mill in Oakerthorpe it was an inspiration to discover Sir Joseph had been an indentured apprentice here at his uncle's cotton mill. It was here that his lifelong career as one of Britain's foremost industrial engineers had its roots. After leaving the mill in 1821 he went on to work with Charles Babbbage, produced machinery accurate to one millionth of an inch and created 'British Standard Whitworth' screw thread.

So what happens now?

We are about to erect the last of the plaques you voted for in 2010. Then we'll start work organising the next six plaques. We will keep you up to date on this page.