Dronfield Hall Barn

Dronfield Heritage Trust awarded for work with young people

Dronfield Heritage Trust has won a major award in recognition of its work with students at Eckington School.

The Trust, which runs Dronfield Hall Barn on High Street, was presented with the prestigious East Midlands Chamber of Commerce Education and Business Partnership Award at a ceremony in Derby.

The Trust has had an association with Eckington School over a number of years starting with a project to build a scale replica of The Barn’s wooden frame from original Barn oak.

Since then, the partnership has developed, and this year, students from the school were involved in research and evaluation in connection with a corporate offer project, which had financial support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Working with Trust staff and outside consultants, the students were able to get “real world” experience of business needs and the student team made a major contribution to the success of the project overall.

Trust Commercial Manager Claire Wilks said: “We have had a close association with Eckington School, and we try to find an annual project which benefits both school students and the Trust. These have varied over the years involving different students and departments.

“As a Trust focussed on communities, our link with Eckington School has been of tremendous value to us, and at the same time gives students opportunities they might not otherwise have access to. It is a truly positive joint venture with all the advantages of being mutually beneficial.”

Employer Engagement Manager for Eckington School, Sally-Anne Warren-Armes said: “Developing a close relationship with Dronfield Hall Barn has enabled our students to take experiences of the workplace to a whole new level. We continue to develop new and exciting projects with our friends at The Barn and look forward to lots of exciting collaborations ahead.”

The award was presented to Claire and Sally-Anne by Andy Flinn, CEO of award sponsors RDS Global. He praised the outstanding achievement of the partnership between the Trust and school. He said they had jointly developed the sort of partnership which could be successfully replicated elsewhere. “They are trendsetters,” he said.

Chamber President Eileen Richards added: “It is fantastic to see the collaboration with educational institutions and businesses to make a positive impact to our future generation of business leaders. The skills that students are learning by participating in the project will equip them with them business acumen, communication and negotiating skills which will aid them as they enter the world of work.”

A further result of the collaboration has been the appointment of the Eckington School student team leader Ryan Holmes as a trustee of Dronfield Heritage Trust as part of a Young Trustee initiative.

Dronfield Heritage Trust supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Dronfield Hall Barn works with local school to improve links with a range of businesses

Dronfield Hall Barn has formed a partnership with year 12 business students at Eckington School, who have been able to help the team form strong links with the local business community.

In 2019, the first group of Year 12 business students began researching how the Barn could become more attractive to business users. By understanding the needs of local businesses, the Barn has seen a gradual increase of commercial bookings in recent months. In 2020, the students’ project was handed over to another group of Eckington School business students.

This year’s group have built on their predecessors’ work, by researching over 130 nearby businesses. This has achieved firm links between the community hub and a range of local businesses from manufacturers to distributors.

Through the projects, Eckington School students have been able to develop their understanding of how businesses work. The relationship between the Barn and Eckington School is mutually beneficial, and allows students to get hands on business experience as well as developing key attributes such as leadership, initiative and communication.

Students have access to fields they are interested in and would like to pursue further. This is useful, as schools can only provide classroom education; having this business experience can make all the difference on CVs, personal statements or job applications.

This close bond played a role in the school achieving a gold award for careers education. As a result of this, Eckington School has nominated the Barn for an Education and Business Partnership Award from the East Midlands Chamber of Commerce. The Barn has been shortlisted, with the winners to be announced in October.

Every year group that passes through Eckington School will provide new ideas and unique skillsets. Although the Barn will face new challenges, the school is confident every group of its students will work hard to solve them.

In addition, it is hoped that new departments will take the opportunity to work with the Barn, with digital media or photography students helping to enhance the marketing of the Barn, to further build on the corporate links already in place.

Claire Wilks, Commercial Manager at Dronfield Heritage Trust said: “Dronfield Hall Barn and Eckington School a have worked together over a number of years now on a variety of projects. These projects have benefited both organisations and the students have gained vital skills- in terms of employability; they have used their experiences on personal statements and being able to discuss their involvement in job interviews, and their confidence and presentation skills have had a real boost.

“We look forward to seeing how we can build on the relationship in the future and the exciting projects we will undertake together!”

Dronfield Hall Barn supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Dronfield Hall Barn pilots a rent-a-desk scheme for entrepreneurs and remote-working employees

The award-winning Heritage and Arts centre, Dronfield Hall Barn in north-east Derbyshire, has responded to the post-pandemic changes to working life by launching a new venue for remote workers.

The 600-year-old Medieval barn is a stunning location for the flexible rent-a-desk venture which is available initially for a trial period on consecutive Mondays from 24th May to 28th June. Bookings for a half-day or full-day are made online and guests can enjoy the splendid surroundings of the lofty upper-floor Gallery.

The idea came together through a consultation involving local businesses, and after watching the national trends which show fewer employees returning to their former offices.  A National Lottery Heritage Fund grant has allowed The Dronfield Heritage Trust, custodians of the Barn, to work on a campaign to attract more commercial users. Rent-a-Desk is the first of a series of business-related projects to be launched by the charity this year.

The High Street heritage building is already home to a wide range of arts, cultural and community events as well as having an outdoor and indoor coffee shop and beautiful gardens.  This rent-a-desk pilot will provide feedback from the first business users so the service is ready for a full launch later this summer.

Alan Powell, chair of the Dronfield Heritage Trust says: “We are expecting to see a demand from small business owners, freelancers and  some employees who are tired of perching at the kitchen table or battling over internet access with the kids. They need an alternative desk to land their lap tops and a pleasant place to enjoy time with colleagues and clients. This way we are helping the business community and making the most of our brilliant facilities.”

Louise Third, director of PR company Integra Communications was the first to try out the facilities when indoor gathering was permitted on Monday 17th May. She says: “Packing my briefcase and laptop and heading off to the Barn was like experiencing the first day at school. A little strange at first, especially to be working somewhere other than my home office. But I received a very warm welcome, I could help myself to coffee all day, and hold meetings in the café area. I fully intend to make this a regular base when I need to be in Derbyshire”.

Anyone interested in the rent-a-desk facility, as well as venue hire and catering for business events, can go to the website for more details and booking information. https://dronfieldhallbarn.org/business/

Dronfield Hall Barn supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Dronfield Hall Barn recognised as one of UK’s top wedding venues in LUX Life Magazine

The team at Dronfield Hall Barn are celebrating, after the venue was recognised as one of the nation’s best wedding venues in LUX Life magazine’s Global Wedding Awards 2021.

The multi-purpose venue which is managed by the Dronfield Heritage Trust and is a registered charity, has been awarded the title of “Best Individual Wedding Ceremony Venue – East Midlands.”

Pauline Hindle Hospitality Manager “We are all delighted to receive this accolade. It recognises the stunning beauty of the Barn and the hard work of the team who put so much effort into ensuring that everyone who  has their wedding here has a perfect day.”

LUXlife Magazine is a premium lifestyle publication which is distributed to a circulation of 238,000 globally. The magazine focuses on a range of topics within the luxury lifestyle industry, featuring articles on; fashion, beauty, fine dining, travel, luxury real estate and much more.

Alongside weddings, the barn serves the local community in Dronfield in a number of different ways. One recent example was how it provided food collection and delivery services to local residents during the coronavirus pandemic.

Since its restoration, Dronfield Hall barn has hosted a number of events including heritage displays and art exhibitions. There is also a coffee shop serving light lunches and delicious home-made cakes, along with heritage, sensory and wildflower gardens to add to the high quality visitor experience.

This month is also cause for more celebration for the team, as the barn marks five years since it was first opened to the public. Now self-sustainable, the Trust continues to engage the community and generate income to keep the Barn open.

Staff at the barn say they are now taking bookings for 2023 weddings. For more details, head to: https://dronfieldhallbarn.org/weddings/

Dronfield Hall Barn supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

Posted in Business, Development, Featured, Home, Leisure, Uncategorised, VisitingTagged in , , , , , ,

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