2008/9 Schools Wikipedia Selection. Related subjects: British Cities; Great Britain

Official logo of Derby
Arms of Derby City Council
Motto: "Industria, Virtus, et Fortitudo"
Derby shown within England
Derby shown within England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Constituent country England
Region East Midlands
Ceremonial county Derbyshire
Admin HQ Derby
Settled AD 600
City Status 1977
 - Type Unitary authority, City
 - Governing body Derby City Council
 -  Leadership Leader & Cabinet
 -  U.A. & City 30.1 sq mi (78.03 km²)
Population (2006 est.)
 -  U.A. & City 236,300
 -  Density 7,842.5/sq mi (3,028/km²)
 - Urban 236,300
 - Ethnicity
( Office of National Statistics 2005 Estimate)
85.8% White
8.9% S. Asian
2.2% Black British
1.1% Chinese and other
2.0% Mixed Race
Time zone Greenwich Mean Time ( UTC+0)
Grid Ref. SK3533936187
ONS code 00FY
ISO 3166-2 GB-DBY

Derby (pronounced "dar-bee" /dˈɑːbɪ/) listen  is a city in the East Midlands of England. It lies on the banks of the River Derwent and is surrounded by the shire county of Derbyshire. In the 2001 census the population of the borough was 233,700, whilst that of the Derby Urban Area was 229,407. Measured by Urban Area, Derby is the 18th largest settlement in England. A person from Derby is called a Derbian or a Derbrarian.



The City has Roman, Saxon and Viking connections. The Roman camp of 'Derventio' was probably at Little Chester/Chester Green ( grid reference SK353375); The site of the old Roman fort is at Chester Green. Later the town was one of the ' Five Boroughs' (fortified towns) of the Danelaw.

The Tower of Derby Cathedral, Englands third tallest (Anglican) cathedral church tower
The Tower of Derby Cathedral, Englands third tallest (Anglican) cathedral church tower

The popular belief is that the name 'Derby' is a corruption of the Danish and Gaelic Djúra-bý (recorded in Anglo-Saxon as Deoraby) (Village of the Deer); however some assert that it is a corruption of the original Roman name 'Derventio'. The town was also named 'Darby' or 'Darbye' on some of the oldest maps, eg. Speed's 1610 map. Derby recently celebrated its 2,000th year as a settlement.

New research (2004) into the history and archaeology of Derby has provided evidence that the Vikings and Anglo-Saxons probably co-existed, occupying two areas of land surrounded by water. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle (c. 900) says that "Derby is divided by water". These areas of land were known as Norþworþig ("Northworthy", = "north enclosure") and Deoraby, and were at the "Irongate" (North) side of Derby. (Ron McKeown of Derby Heritage Development Trust has produced a paper on this subject.)

Middle Ages to the 18th century

During the Civil War of 1642-1646 the town was garrisoned by Parliamentary troops commanded by Sir John Gell, 1st Baronet, who was appointed Governor of Derby in 1643. These troops took part in the defence of Nottingham, the siege of Lichfield, the battle of Hopton Heath and many other engagements in Nottinghamshire, Staffordshire and Cheshire, as well as successfully defending Derbyshire against royalist armies.

Bonnie Prince Charlie made camp at Derby on 4 December 1745, whilst on his way south to seize the English crown. The Prince called at The George Inn on Irongate, where the Duke of Devonshire had set up his headquarters, and demanded billets for his 9000 troops.

Statue of Bonnie Prince Charlie located on Cathedral Green
Statue of Bonnie Prince Charlie located on Cathedral Green

He stayed at Exeter House, Exeter Street where he held his "Council of War". A replica of the room is on display at the Central library located on the Wardwick in the City Centre. He had received misleading information about an army coming to meet him south of Derby. Although he wished to continue with his quest, he was overruled by his fellow officers. He abandoned his invasion at Swarkestone Bridge, on the River Trent, just a few miles south of Derby. As a testement to his belief in his cause the Prince who on the march from Scotland had walked at the front of the column made the return journey on horseback at the rear of the bedraggled and tired army.

Each year at the beginning of December, the Charles Edward Stuart Society of Derby lead a weekend of activities culminating in a parade through the City Centre and a battle on Cathedral Green.

Industrial Revolution

Derby and Derbyshire were centres of Britain's industrial revolution. In 1717 Derby was the site of the first water powered silk mill in Britain, built by John Lombe and George Sorocold after Lombe had reputedly stolen the secrets of silk-throwing from Piedmont in what is now Italy (he is alleged to have been poisoned by Piedmontese in revenge in 1722).

In 1759 Jedediah Strutt patented and built a machine called the Derby Rib attachment that revolutionised the manufacture of Hose. This attachment was used on the Rev. Lee's Framework knitting machine; it was placed in front of and worked in unison with Lee's Frame, to produce ribbed hose (stockings). The partners were Jedediah Strutt, William Woollatt had been joined in 1758 by John Bloodworth and Thomas Stafford, leading hosiers in Derby. The patent was obtained in January 1759; after three years Bloodworth and Stafford were paid off, and Samuel Need, hosier of Nottingham, joined the partnership; the firm was known as Need, Strutt & Woollatt. The patent expired in 1773, though the partnership continued until 1781, when Need died.

Year Population
1801 14,695
1851 48,506
1901 118,469
1921 142,824
1941 167,321
1951 181,423
1961 199,578
1971 219,558
1981 214,424
1991 225,296
2001 221,716

Messrs Wright, the bankers of Nottingham, recommended that Richard Arkwright apply to Strutt & Need for finance for his cotton spinning mill. The first mill opened in Nottingham in 1770; this was driven by horses. In 1771 Richard Arkwright, Samuel Need and Jedediah Strutt built the world's first water-powered cotton spinning mill at Cromford, Derbyshire, developing a form of power that was the catalyst for the industrial revolution.

This was followed in Derbyshire by Jedediah Strutt's cotton spinning mills at Belper. They were: South Mill, the first, 1775; North Mill, 1784, which was destroyed by fire on 12 January 1803, and then rebuilt——it started work again at the end of 1804; West Mill, 1792, commenced working 1796; Reeling Mill, 1897; Round Mill, which took 10 years to build, from 1803 to 1813, and commenced working in 1816; and Milford Mills, 1778. The Belper and Milford mills were not built in partnership with Arkwright. These mills were all Strutt owned and financed.

The Belper North Mill of 1804 built by William Strutt, Jedediah's son, is an iron-framed fire-proof building and is the only original Strutt Mill still standing today. It now serves as a Visitor Centre.

Derwent Valley Mills, World Heritage Site
Derwent Valley Mills, World Heritage Site

Thomas Evans' mill at Darley Abbey (1783). Other famous 18th century figures with connections to Derby include Dr Johnson, the creator of the English dictionary, who married Elizabeth Porter at St. Werburgh's Church, Derby in 1735; the painter Joseph Wright, known as Wright of Derby, who was famous for his revolutionary use of light in his paintings and was an associate of the Royal Academy; and John Whitehurst, a famous clockmaker and philosopher. Erasmus Darwin, doctor, scientist, philosopher and grandfather of Charles Darwin was also to be found in Derby and Derbyshire at much the same time, though his practice was based in Lichfield, Staffordshire.

The beginning of the next century saw Derby emerging as an engineering centre, with manufacturers such as James Fox, who exported machine tools to Russia.

In 1840, the North Midland Railway set up its works in Derby and, when it merged with the Midland Counties Railway and the Birmingham and Derby Junction Railway, to form the Midland Railway, Derby became its headquarters.

The connection with the railway encouraged others, notably Andrew Handyside, Charles Fox and his son Francis Fox. A list of the structures these three built reads like a "Who's Who" of famous buildings.

Derby was one of the boroughs reformed by the Municipal Corporations Act 1835, and it became a county borough with the Local Government Act 1888. The borough expanded in 1877 to include Little Chester and Litchurch, and then in 1890 to include New Normanton and Rowditch. The borough did not increase substantially again until 1968, when under a recommendation of the Local Government Boundary Commission it was expanded into large parts of the rural district of Belper, Repton and South East Derbyshire. This vastly increased Derby's population from 132,408 in the 1961 census to 219,578 in the 1971 census.

Derby Industrial Museum / Silk Mill World Heritage Site
Derby Industrial Museum / Silk Mill World Heritage Site

Despite being one of the areas of Britain furthest from the sea, Derby holds a special place in the history of marine safety - it was as MP for Derby that Samuel Plimsoll introduced his bills for a ' Plimsoll line' (and other marine safety measures). This failed on first introduction, but was successful in 1876 and contributed to Plimsoll's re-election as a deservedly popular MP.

Recent history (post 1900)

Derby was awarded city status on 7 June 1977 by Queen Elizabeth II to mark the 25th anniversary of her ascension to the throne. The Queen presented the "charter scroll" in person on July 28, 1977. Until then, Derby had been one of the few towns in England with a cathedral but not city status.

Derby has a number of public parks, many Victorian in origin. Darley and Derwent Parks, lie immediately north of the city centre and are home to owls, kingfishers and a wide variety of other wildlife. There is an attractive riverside walk and cycle path from Darley Park South to two other parks. West of the city centre is Markeaton Park, while to the north is Allestree Park and its lake. Derby also has the first public recreational park in the country, the Arboretum, to the south of the city centre. The arboretum was set up by philanthropic land owner and industrialist Joseph Strutt in 1840. The arboretum's web site states that the arboretum's design was the inspiration for the vision of great urban parks in the USA, notably Central Park in York City">New York City.

Derby holds an important position in the history of the Labour movement, because it was one of two seats (the other being Keir Hardie's in Merthyr Tydfil) gained by the recently formed Labour Representation Committee at the 1900 General Election. The MP was Richard Bell, general secretary of the Railway Servants Union. Bell was succeeded by Jimmy Thomas and he in turn by the distinguished polymath and Nobel Laureate Philip Noel-Baker.

Despite its strategic industries (rail and aero-engine), Derby suffered comparatively little wartime damage in WW1 or WW2 (contrast Bristol and Filton). This may in part have been due to the skilful jamming of the German radio-beam navigations systems ( X-Verfahren and Knickelbein, camouflage and decoy techniques (' Starfish sites') were built, mainly south of the town, e.g. out in fields near Foremark (ref. Kirk, Felix & Bartnik, 2002, see talk; see also ).

Derby has also become a significant cultural centre for the deaf community in the UK. Many deaf people relocate to Derby because of its strong sign language-using community. It is estimated that the deaf population in Derby is at least three times higher than the national average, and that only London has a larger deaf population. The Royal School for the Deaf on Ashbourne Road provides education in British Sign Language and English.

More recently Derby was granted the Fairtrade City status.


By traditional definitions, Derby is the county town of Derbyshire, although Derbyshire's administrative centre has in recent years been Matlock. On 1 April 1997 Derby City Council became again a unitary authority (a status it had held, as a County Borough, up until 1974), with the rest of Derbyshire administered from Matlock. Derby has two hospitals: the Derbyshire Royal Infirmary and the Derby City Hospital.


Derby is split up into 17 Wards.

Ward Areas within the Ward
Abbey St Lukes and California, Derby
Allestree Allestree and Markeaton
Alvaston Alvaston, Litchurch and Wilmorton
Arboretum City Centre and Rose Hill
Blagreaves Blagreaves and Sunny Hill
Boulton Boulton
Chaddesden Chaddesden, Derwent Heights
Chellaston Chellaston, Shelton Lock and Allenton
Darley Darley Abbey and Little Chester (aka Chester Green)
Derwent Derwent
Littleover Littleover and Heatherton Village
Mackworth Mackworth
Mickleover Mickleover
Normanton Normanton and Pear Tree
Oakwood Oakwood
Sinfin Sinfin and Osmaston
Spondon Spondon

Nearest settlements

Duffield, Belper, Heanor, Ilkeston, Ripley (Derbyshire Constabulary HQ), Langley Mill, Alfreton, Chesterfield, Matlock (Derbyshire County Council is based here), Bakewell, Long Eaton, Nottingham, Sandiacre, Beeston, Coalville, Loughborough, Castle Donington, Leicester, Burton-upon-Trent.


This is a chart of trend of regional gross value added of Derby at current basic prices published (pp.240-253) by Office for National Statistics with figures in millions of British Pounds Sterling.

Year Regional Gross Value Added Agriculture Industry Services
1995 2,509 2 1,130 1,377
2000 3,965 1 1,819 2,145
2003 4,421 1 1,806 2,614

^  includes hunting and forestry

^  includes energy and construction

^  includes financial intermediation services indirectly measured

^  Components may not sum to totals due to rounding


Derby's two biggest employers, Rolls-Royce plc (commonly known in the area as 'Royce's') and the Toyota Motor Corporation, are both in the engineering manufacturing trade. Egg, the Internet and telephone bank, has its national base in Derby. Other companies of note include Bombardier who manufacture train systems and aircraft, and Alstom who manufacture large power plant boilers and heat exchangers. The Qibla Cola Company also has its home in Derby, based in the Normanton area.

As already noted, Derby was for many years a significant railway centre, being the former headquarters of the Midland Railway, with both British Rail workshops and research facilities in the town. Although much less important than in years gone by, train manufacture continues in Derby and Derby station retains an important strategic role in the rail network. Moreover many major rail manufacturers retain a presence and, as reported in the Derby Evening Telegraph, the city is favoured as a possible site for a new national railway centre.

Among a number of IT houses, Derby was the home of Core Design, who developed the computer game Tomb Raider with its heroine Lara Croft.


Derby Cathedral has the second-highest cathedral tower in the country. In recent years, this has been home to a pair of breeding peregrine falcons

Derby Heritage Centre, formerly the Tudor Grammar School, told the story of Derby from Roman times till today. Unfortunately the owner, Richard Felix, has closed it so that he can focus on his television career. The Heritage Centre has now been converted into a hairdresser's salon. However the new owner has a great interest in local history and has preserved all of the building's original features.

Derby Gaol is a visitor attraction based in the dungeons of the Derbyshire County Gaol which dates back to 1756.

Derby Industrial Museum is situated in Derby Silk Mill and shows the industrial heritage and technological achievement of Derby, including Rolls-Royce aero engines, railways, mining, quarrying and foundries.

Pickford's House Museum
Pickford's House Museum

Pickford's House Museum was built by architect Joseph Pickford in 1770. It was his home and business headquarters. Derby Museum and Art Gallery shows paintings by Joseph Wright, as well as fine Royal Crown Derby porcelain, local regiments and archaeology. Pickford also designed St Helen's House in King Street.

The Revive Healthy Living Centre was opened on September 22 by actress Gwen Taylor. This centre was built to provide excellent new and exiciting health initiatives for the area known as Derwent, Chaddesden, and Breadsall. It is unique as it is run by local residents and will continue to do so. It has a unique sedum/grass roof. It is already proving to be invaluable to the local residents

Much of the skyline of the inner city changed radically in 1968 when the inner ring road with its two new crossings of the River Derwent was built. The route of the ring road went through the magnificent St. Alkmund's church and its wonderful Georgian church yard, the only Georgian square in Derby. Both were demolished to make way for the road, a move still criticised today. Thus the editor (Elizabeth Williamson) of the 2nd edition of Pevsner for Derbyshire wrote:- '...the character and cohesion of the centre has been completely altered by the replacement of a large number of C18 houses in the centre by a multi-lane road. As a traffic scheme this road is said to be a triumph; as townscape it is a disaster.'

Places of interest

  • Darley Abbey
  • Derby Arboretum
  • Derby Canal
  • Derby Cathedral
  • Derby Industrial Museum (Silk Mill)
  • Derby Friargate Station (of which all that remains is Handyside's bridge across Friargate)
  • Elvaston Castle
  • Markeaton Park Light Railway, a heritage railway
  • Pride Park Stadium and the former Baseball Ground
  • River Derwent
  • St Helen's House, Derby



Derby's central location in England means it has extensive transport links with other areas of the country. The M1 motorway passes about ten miles to the east of the city, linking Derby southwards to the London area and northwards to Sheffield and Leeds. Other major roads passing through or near Derby include the A6 (historically the main route from London to Carlisle, also linking to Leicester and Manchester), A38 ( Bodmin to Mansfield via Bristol and Birmingham), A50 ( Warrington to Leicester via Stoke-on-Trent), A52 ( Newcastle-under-Lyme to Mablethorpe, including Brian Clough Way linking Derby to Nottingham) and A61 (Derby to Thirsk via Sheffield and Leeds).


As already noted, the railway has served Derby since 1840 being the junction of what were then the two main lines from London to Yorkshire and the North East. The present day station is Derby Midland with frequent expresses to London, the North East and South West, provided by East Midlands Trains and CrossCountry. There also remain small local stations at Peartree and Spondon, although services are fairly limited, especially at the former.

The Great Northern Railway's "Derbyshire and North Staffordshire Extension" formerly ran through Derby Friargate Station, from Colwick and Nottingham to Egginton Junction. After closure, part of the route west of Derby was used by British Rail as a test track. Although few traces of the route now remain, the ornate cast iron bridge by Andrew Handyside across Friargate is still in place, as is his bridge over the river.


East Midlands Airport is situated about fifteen miles (24 km) from Derby city centre, making Derby the closest city to the airport. Its proximity to Derby, the fact that the airport is in Leicestershire, and the traditional rivalry between the three cities (Derby, Leicester and Nottingham), meant that there was a great deal of controversy locally about the airport's decision to prefix its name with Nottingham in 2004. Later on, in 2006, Nottingham East Midlands Airport reverted to its previous name, seen by many to be a victory for both Derby and Leicester, and promoting a more unified East Midlands. The airport is served by several budget airlines, including bmibaby (for which East Midlands is a main base), Ryanair and easyJet, with services to a variety of internal and European destinations.

Bus and coach

Derby's former bus station was an innovative art deco design by borough architect C.H. Aslin. Originally built in 1933, it was closed in 2005, and subsequently demolished, despite the protests of environmentalists and conservationists. The unique cafe building is planned to be rebuilt at Crich Tramway Museum. A new bus station is set to be built on the site as part of the Riverlights development. As a result of this work, services are currently using a number of temporary stops on streets around the Morledge area.

Local bus services in and around Derby are run by a number of companies, but principally Trent Barton and Arriva Midlands. The city is not particularly well served by long distance coaches, although it is on National Express's London to Manchester and Yorkshire to the South West routes. Additionally a regional route between Manchester and Nottingham is run by Trent Barton via its TransPeak and Red Arrow services.

Culture, entertainment and sport


The annual open-air concert at Darley Park is one of the biggest free concerts of its kind. It is one of many performances given throughout the year by Sinfonia Viva, a professional chamber orchestra based in Derby. The Derby Jazz group caters for the jazz interest in the city and is regarded as one of the UK's leading live jazz organizations. There is also a summer rock music festival ' Prom in the Park' which takes place in late July every year.

The city of Derby has a lively punk scene, and this is supported by many prominent punk, ska and hardcore bands playing the Vic Inn, a local biker pub. In recent years it has attracted many big names such as The Casualties, Agnostic Front, and U.K. Subs, as well as many local bands. Hardcore punk band, Anti-Pasti, were formed in Derby. In addition to this, the Derby Punx Picnic is held annually at the Bass Recreation Ground. Here underground punk and ska bands perform late into the night. The Punx Picnic has become an event in recent years, the attendance rising from around 300 in 2005 to just over 1000 in 2006. The festival attracts punks from all over the East Midlands and the UK.

Theatre and arts

Derby Playhouse regularly received acclaim in the national press for its productions, particularly, in recent years, for its staging of shows by Stephen Sondheim. After a lengthy period of financial uncertainty, the theatre finally closed in February 2008.

QUAD is a new centre for art and film currently under construction in Derby. It is due to be complete in 2008. The new building will house two cinema screens showing both independent and mainstream cinema, two gallery spaces housing contemporary visual arts, a digital studio, participation spaces, digital editing suites, artists studio and the bfi Mediatheque.

The Robert Ludlam Theatre is a 270 seat Venue with a diverse programme of entertainment including Dance, Drama, Art, Music, Theatre in the Round, Comedy, Films, Family Entertainment, Rock and Pop Events, Workshops and provides a home for many Derbyshire's amateur production groups.


Famous Derby sporting institutions include Derby County Football Club, who were FA Cup winners in 1946, Football League champions in 1972 and again in 1975, and are currently members of the Football League Championship, having been relegated from the Premier League. They have played at Pride Park Stadium since 1997, having previously based at the Baseball Ground.

Derbyshire County Cricket Club are based at the County Ground in Derby and play almost all home matches there, although matches at Chesterfield were re-introduced in 2006. One of the designated first class county sides, they have won the County Championship once, in 1936.

Derby also has clubs in both codes of rugby. In rugby union, Derby RFC play in Midlands Division Two East (the seventh level of English rugby) at their Haslams Lane ground. Rugby league team Derby City RLFC were formed in 1990 and compete in the Midlands Premier Division of the National Rugby League Conference. From 2008 they are ground sharing with Derby RFC at Haslams Lane.

The city is also represented in the English Basketball League Division One by Derby Trailblazers, who play at the Moorways Sports Centre. They were formed in 2002 following the demise of British Basketball League side Derby Storm.

Local industrialist Francis Ley introduced baseball to the town in the late 19th century, and built a stadium near the town centre. The attempt to establish baseball in Derby was unsuccessful, but the stadium survived for some 100 years afterwards as the home of Derby County Football Club. It was finally demolished in 2003, six years after Derby's relocation to Pride Park.


The newly restored Grove Street Lodge and "Grand Entrance" at the northern end of the Arboretum
The newly restored Grove Street Lodge and "Grand Entrance" at the northern end of the Arboretum

Derby Arboretum was the first public park in the country, and is thought to have been one of the inspirations for Central Park in New York. Although it suffered from neglect in the 1990s, it has recently undergone extensive improvement and renovation.

Markeaton Park is Derby's most used leisure facility. It is the venue for the city council's annual Guy Fawkes Night firework display and contains its own light railway. Other major parks in the city include Allestree Park, Darley Park, Chaddesden Park, Alvaston Park, Normanton Park and Osmaston Park.

Shopping and Nightlife

Marketplace in the centre

Shopping in Derby is divided into two main sections. The first is a recently opened Westfield shopping centre, controlled by the Westfield Group. The second is the older section known as the Cathedral Quarter. This area includes a range of boutiques and coffee shops and is focused around the Cathedral.

Westfield Derby (formerly The Eagle Centre) is the city's main indoor shopping centre. It opened on 9 October 2007 after major extension work costing £340 million. It contains a brand new food court, dominated by chains, and a 12 screen cinema (Showcase - Cinema De Lux) which was opened on 16th May 2008. It is already the subject of local controversy, since it has drawn trade away from the older parts of the city centre where independent shops have traditionally been located. Many have now gone out of business and others are struggling to survive. Moreover, in Westfield itself, a combination of high rents and rising rates have made it very difficult for smaller traders. Though it is thought that when Primark is open (currently being built away and outside the Westfield) that many people will go outside Westfield into the rest of Derby City Centre.

The Friar Gate area of Derby is dominated by a number of clubs and bars, therefore making it the centre of Derby's nightlife.


Like most of the UK, Derby operates a non-selective primary and secondary education system with no middle schools. Students attend infant and junior school (often in a combined primary school) before moving onto a comprehensive secondary school. Many secondaries also have sixth forms, allowing students to optionally continue their education by taking A Levels after the end of compulsory education at age 16. For those who want to stay in education but leave school, the large Derby College provides a number of post-16 courses.

Outside the state sector, there are four fee-paying independent schools. Derby Grammar School was founded in 1994 and was for boys only, until 2007, when they accepted girls into the sixth form for the first time, who aim to continue the work and traditions of the former Derby School, closed in 1989, one of the oldest schools in England; Derby High School is for girls only at secondary level and for boys at primary level; and Ockbrook School is an independent school for girls aged 3-18 and boys aged 3-11. Lastly, Michael House Steiner school can be found in Shipley, Heanor and caters for students from kindergarten age through to 16.

Derby also has a City Academy, Landau Forte College, partially state-funded, but also with business backing. It was one of fifteen City Technology Colleges set up by a Conservative government in the late 1980s and early 1990s, and it was converted into a City Academy in September 2006.

Derby also has a number of special needs establishments including Ivy House School (which takes pupils from nursery to sixth form) and The Light House which is a respite facility for children and parents.

The University of Derby is the city's university.

In 2003 the University of Nottingham opened a graduate entry medical school based in the Derby City hospital.


  • Derby has been named "Ghost capital of Britain" with over 1,000 paranormal sightings recorded in recent years.
  • Bold Lane car park in Derby is one of the top ten most secure places in the world according to a study published in a science magazine.
  • Dracula first showed in Derby.

Notable people

  • Alan Bates (1934-2003), actor
  • Ronald Binge (1910-1979), composer
  • Steve Bloomer (1874-1938), footballer
  • Henry Cavendish (1731-1810), scientist
  • Brian Clough, OBE (1934-2004), football player and manager
  • William John Coffee (1774-1846), artist and sculptor
  • Daniel Parker Coke (1745-1825), barrister and member of parliament
  • William George Constable (1887-1976), art historian
  • John Cotton (1585–1652), New England Puritan
  • Erasmus Darwin (1731–1802), physician
  • James Dobb, former motocross World Champion
  • John Flamsteed (1646-1719), first Astronomer Royal
  • Lianna Fowler, fashion model
  • Sir Charles Fox (1810-1874), engineer
  • Sir Francis Fox (1844-1927), engineer
  • James Fox (1780-1830) engineer
  • Sir Francis Seymour Haden (1818-1910), surgeon and artist
  • Andrew Handyside (1806-1887) iron founder
  • Geoff Hoon (1953- ), politician
  • Sir Robert Howe (1893-1981), last British Governor-General of the Sudan
  • Arthur Keily (1921- ) Marathon runner
  • William Lamb, 2nd Viscount Melbourne (1779-1848), former Prime Minister
  • John Lombe (1693-1722), industrial pioneer
  • Stephen Marley, novelist and video game designer
  • Captain Godfrey Meynell, recipient of the Victoria Cross
  • Sir Howard Newby (1941- ) educationalist and sociologist
  • Florence Nightingale (1820-1910), pioneer of modern nursing
  • Ben Pridmore, World Memory Champion 2004
  • Samuel Richardson (1689–1761), novellist
  • Sir Henry Royce (1863-1933), co-founder of Rolls-Royce
  • Max Sciandri, Olympic medalist
  • George Sorocold, engineer
  • Herbert Spencer (1820–1903), philosopher
  • Jedediah Strutt (1726-1797), industrial pioneer
  • John Whitehurst (1713–1788), clockmaker and scientist
  • Sir Frank Whittle (1907–1996), Engineer
  • Sir Henry Wilmot, recipient of the Victoria Cross
  • Joseph Wright (1734-1797), painter

Colin Osborne P.D.C Darts professional 1974 -

Twin cities

  • Flag of Germany - Osnabrück, Germany
  • Flag of India - Kapurthala, India (friendship link)
  • Flag of the Netherlands - Haarlem, Netherlands (friendship link)
  • Flag of France - Foncqueviliers, France (friendship link)
  • Flag of Japan - Toyota City, Japan
  • Flag of the People's Republic of China - Changzhi, China (Memorandum of Understanding)

Along with Wigan, Derby is one of only two cities in the UK that exchanges envoys with one of its twin cities (Osnabrück).

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