Call for volunteers to step back in time

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The Arkwright Society is looking for enthusiastic volunteers to join the team at CromfordMills and support their work in the new Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site Gateway.

The World Heritage Site Gateway will open later this year and will provide a focal point within the northern part of the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site, thanks to a £4 million grant by the Heritage Lottery Fund and funding from the Headley Trust, Monument Trust, Wolfson Foundation, Garfield Weston Foundation, J Paul Getty Jnr Charitable Trust, Sylvia Waddilove Foundation, Pilgrim Trust, AIM Biffa Award and the Architectural Heritage Fund.

The new Gateway will engage a broad spectrum of visitors in a variety of ways, providing opportunities to discover more about the heritage of this remarkable valley that changed the world, and signposting visitors to key locations within Cromford and the wider World Heritage Site.

It will include a new auditorium, exhibition area, shop and historical interpretation including an audio visual presentation inside Sir Richard Arkwright’s first mill, built when he came to Cromford in 1771.

There are a variety of exciting roles to get involved with, both within the Gateway and on the wider Cromford Mills Site, to help with the expanding activities programme on offer.

Volunteers in the Gateway will welcome visitors to the fantastic new centre. They will be given full training so that they can share their enthusiasm and knowledge of the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site and perform a range of tasks to ensure visitors get the most out of their time there.

Volunteers can gain work experience, build their confidence, and make new friends and contacts through a diverse range of roles including leading guided tours, costumed interpretation, assisting with education groups and managing events.

Whatever the role, you will be inspiring people to visit, learn and engage in the history of this amazing industrial valley.

Sarah McLeod, chief executive of the Arkwright Society said: “If the idea of being part of a new and vibrant project inspires you then you may be just the person we are looking for to join our team.

“This in an incredibly exciting time in the history of Cromford Mills.

“The Arkwright Society simply could not carry out its valuable work without the support of volunteers, and the new Gateway centre will be no exception.”

There are a series of Volunteer Open Days at Cromford Mills throughout September and October for people to come along and find out more about becoming a volunteer in the Gateway.

The first one is today (Wednesday) from 1.30pm to 4pm. To book a place at the Volunteer Open Day contact Cromford Mills on 01629 823256 or email

To find out more about any of the volunteering opportunities with the Arkwright Society, visit the website or email