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Courses, workshops and education

Check out these courses and workshops

There are loads of courses and workshops in Derbyshire, and we’ve trawled around for the best courses for you to improve your skills or gain new ones — or just simply to feed your soul. Read on!

Craft and practical skills courses and workshops

Have you always promised yourself some 'me time' to get to grips with a new skill? We've got all angles covered with our selection of groups, classes and workshops to get involved with. So, get wiggling your belly, tapping those feet, carving wood or stone or take to treading the boards.

In Bolsover at the Beans Coffee Shop there are regular workshops for all sorts of tastes and interests:

The Eco Centre in Middleton-by-Wirksworth has lots of arts and crafts based workshops for you to join in with as autumn gets underway: 

Straightcurves in Chesterfield have a packed programme of arty and crafty workshops - and the focus over the summer in on children's entertainments! - to help you learn a new skill, whether the skill you would like to learn is arty or crafty! 

  • Drop in on this regular group, the Sunday Sew Social and get sewing socially. Throughout the year.
  • Try Life drawing once a month on the first Thursday of the month from 10:30 until 2:30pm 

Or you could take a look through this selection of arts and crafty workshops all around the rest of Derbyshire:      

There are also plenty of regular workshops, groups and club meets:

Deeper interest courses, lectures and workshops

There's something for everyone here, whether you want to actively get involved in a workshop, or want to listen to a lecture by a seasoned guide.
pauline townsend foxglove silk paintingPauline Townsend is a silk painter based in Buxton who runs a series of silk painting workshops for beginners and advanced silk painting enthusiasts alike. Only two more workshops scheduled in 2014, so sign up before the places get booked!

There are also lots of other events and regular groups to join:

Reading, libraries and literature

Tenth Anniversary of the Hayfield Library Poetry Group
Thursday 6th November 2014: 10.45 for 11 am at Hayfield Library
New members welcome to come and join the group for their tenth anniversary meeting.   Bring a poem to read or just enjoy listening to poems on the theme of “Remember”.  Pick up and borrow a mystery poetry book on the day and chose a free book to take home and keep.  Refreshments will also be available.

Derbyshire Poem a Month Writing Competition
Why not have a go at writing a poem for the Derbyshire Poem a Month blog?

We’re inviting anyone who lives, works or studies in Derbyshire to get creative and write a short poem to enter the competition.  Twelve poems will be chosen and published on the blog – one for each month of 2015. 

For full details pick up an entry form in the library or visit the Derbyshire Literature Festival website:

To find out more and sign up to the Poem a Month blog visit:

Read more about the Derbyshire County Council library service in the PDF attached at the bottom of the page. The library service is more than just a building with books!! You can access a whole range of other services online 24 hours a day, so read on to find out more.

The Book Chat list for 2014 has been published for established Book Groups.   The Book Chat List is a list of group sets that registered Book Groups can borrow from the libraries. With titles such as Kate Atkinson's Life After Life, Ned Beaumann's The Teleportation Accident, Sian Busby's A Commonplace Killing, Clare Balding's My Animals and other family, Ann Atkinson's From Matlock to Mamelodi and Khaled Hosseini's And The Mountains Echoed, there is a diverse selection from which to choose to suit most group's tastes.

If you are looking to join a Book Group then try the Reading Groups for Everyone website which is the Reading Agency’s dedicated website for readers and readers’ groups nationally. There is lots of information about current book awards and initiatives, writers, free books and competitions for book groups. You can register your reading group on the site and connect with other groups

If you’d like to receive the Derbyshire County Book Chat e-newsletter, send an email to to request being added to the mailing list.  It’s open to anyone who is interested in books, reading, and literary events in Derbyshire libraries so let your friends and family know too. 

Check out the WEA brochures for Derby, Derbyshire and Chesterfield (see below) for a variety of arts and creative courses.  

For learning disabled adults

At the Level Centre in Rowsley, there are weekly sessions along a range of arts themes.

For children

There's plenty going on to keep your children entertained with classes and regular group meetings to suit just about every artistic taste.  

There are also these regular groups running throughout the year too, so maybe now is the time to give them a try?

Professional development

Keep your professional practihce skills up to date. Also check out our Artists' and Arts Organisations' Training News page for many more opportunities

Adult Community Education

Get on course with Derbyshire Adult Community Education. New courses start running each term, and so it's never too late. For full course details, download a brochure for your area from the Derbyshire County Council website. The areas covered by each brochure are as follows:
  • Western : Covering Ashbourne, Bakewell, Hope Valley, Matlock, Wirksworth, Buxton and Fairfield, Chapel-en-le-Frith, Gamesley, Glossop and New Mills.
  • Eastern : Covering Bolsover, Chesterfield, Clay Cross, Dronfield, Eckington, Killamarsh, Shirebrook and South Normanton.
  • Southern : Covering Alfreton, Belper, Codnor, Long Eaton, Ilkeston, Hatton, Melbourne, Newhall and Swadlincote.
  • At the bottom of this page you will also be able to find the latest Spring brochure for the Eco Centre in Middleton-by-Wirksworth, a venue that is stuffed full of heritage crafts, arts and carfty workshops and courses.

Related documents

The following documents are in Portable Document Format (PDF). You can download software to view PDF documents for free from the Adobe website (opens in a new window)

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