Take a step back in time with the Heritage Trail launch

heritage trail launch heritage trail launch

South Derbyshire’s rich heritage, pioneering industries and inspirational people will be celebrated in the Swadlincote Heritage Trail launch.

Local experts from the town’s history archive, The Magic Attic, have helped to bring the project to life by providing a mix of historical photographs, facts and quirky stories.

Some of the individuals celebrated include George Newberry, a bronze medal winner at the 1952 Olympic Games in Helsinki, courageous 1918 Victoria Cross recipient World War One soldier William Beesley, Hannah Mitchell, who campaigned for the rights of the working class and women as well as boxing hero Jack Bodell, who became a Light-Heavyweight champion in 1961.

Residents can delve into Swadlincote’s past in two parts - Swadlincote Town Centre and Swadlincote Villages including Church Gresley, Midway, Newhall, Woodville and Hartshorne.

Design students from Burton and South Derbyshire College are also developing an app which brings together nostalgic photographs, video clips and interviews about the people and places commemorated.

Martyn Ford, Leader of South Derbyshire District Council, said:

“Swadlincote is rich in culture, heritage and inspirational individuals. The Heritage Trail will give people the opportunity to explore the town and discover what makes it so diverse and fascinating.

 “We are very grateful to The Magic Attic and the dozens of local people who have sent in ideas and photographs, as well as to the funders who have helped turn this great idea into reality.”

The trail consists of 25 plaques, three lecterns, an interactive map on the South Derbyshire District Council website and two leaflets which will be available online as well as from Swadlincote Tourist Information Centre.

The Heritage Lottery Fund provided a £30,000 grant, made possible by money raised by National Lottery players. East Midlands Airport Community Fund and Derbyshire County Council also provided funding.

Funds were also awarded to the Swadlincote Town Team from the Mary Portas Pilots scheme. This “Town-centre first” Government-backed initiative handed 12 towns a portion of a £1.2 million grant and support from the retail guru and Ministers, in a bid to transform them into thriving retail hubs.

Residents will be able to get a preview of the Heritage Trail at the Festival of Leisure, within The National Forest marquee on Saturday and Sunday, June 23 and 24 at Maurice Lea Memorial Park at Church Gresley.

The launch of the Heritage Trail takes place on Tuesday, June 26 at 1pm at Sharpe’s Pottery Museum and will unveil displays boards commemorating each individual and place. For further details about the Heritage Trail, click here.

14 June 2018