Heritage group for Ripley

A new heritage group is to be formed in Ripley in a bid to preserve and celebrate the town’s history.

The new group will be called the Ripley Heritage Action Group, and an open public meeting has been called for Wednesday, March 20, in the Ripley Town Hall, starting at 7pm.

Organisers say everyone is welcome and the meeting will see a constitution formally adopted and the new organisation’s officers elected.

Cllr Steve Freeborn, leader of Ripley Town Council, said: “Ripley and the villages around it has an amazing history which is not well known. We really were at the very heart of the industrial revolution and most people, including many locals, don’t know the half of it.”

Following a Ripley Town Council initiative, it was agreed the new organisation’s role would be: “To discover, preserve, protect and celebrate the history and heritage of Ripley and its people, to enhance the sense of place, strengthen community pride and contribute to the education, recreation and utility of the public at large.”

The new group’s first tasks will be to ensure that all parts of our heritage are identified and protected from any further deterioration. It also wants to develop an oral history project working with the local schools, and to establish a local ‘Heritage Trail’.

The long term ambition is to secure World Heritage Site status for the whole of the Butterley site, and in particular the canal system with its unique underground wharves.