Milford Mills development news May 2022, including links to planning applications.

Milford Mills Development – latest news

There have been some significant changes in the development of this site in the past month. Chevin Homes, the current site owner, are now going to concentrate their efforts on renovating the listed parts of the site (the Dye & Pattern House at the front near the A6), whilst handing over the development of the rest of the site for housing, now the demolition is complete, to Wavensmere Homes. Wavensmere are a regeneration specialist and are currently building 1,000 houses on the former DRI site in Derby.

Chevin Homes have produced an artists impression of the renovated Dye House, shown below.

Artists impression of renovated Dye House March 2022

A meeting was held on the 22nd March between Chevin Homes (John Ferneyhough) and Emma Roberts (Headteacher of Milford School), Ruth Baker (Governor of Milford School/Milford and Makeney Community Group), Gez Kinsella (Derbyshire County Councillor for Milford) and Alan Squires (Milford and Makeney Community group) and another meeting was held between Alan and James Dickens, Director of Wavensmere developments on 19th April. A summary of the information given by Chevin Homes and Wavensmere on the Milford Mill Development plans at these meetings is given below.

    1. Chevin Homes are retaining the Pattern House, the Dye House and the Chimney together with the land adjoining the school playground.  They originally planned to start the refurbishment of the buildings in May for completion in September 2022, but have since submitted a planning application to re-tile the roof (see below) so these timings are likely to be delayed. They hope to have a farm shop and perhaps a daytime cafe on the ground floor of the Dye House. The upper floors will be let out for offices. A G Construction from Hilton have been engaged for the refurbishment of the Dye House.
    2. Chevin Homes have now submitted a planning application for the site adjoining the school playground (see below). That is for an indoor space which can be used for indoor cricket training and other indoor sports activities. Chevin will retain and manage that. They are confident that there is a local demand for indoor cricket training facilities.
    3. Wavensmere are still holding talks with Amber Valley Borough Council (AVBC) over planning matters as there are some slight amendments being proposed to the scheme, although these are not substantial. They hope that preparatory work can commence in May, with the site at least 70% developed by April 2024. Work on site will be weekdays between 8am and 5pm. Building will be in phases with the first houses being at the A6 end. All the houses will be fully electric, with air source heat pump heating systems and electric car charging points. It appears that there have already been many inquiries relating to the site received by their agents.
    4. One difficult issue is the A6 boundary wall which is some 33ft/10m high. This is suffering from some severe cracks and it may need rebuilding, especially before the supporting steel framework is removed. That will involve planners and Historic England.
    5. The open space at the north end of the site will be public open space and there will be a right of way on foot for all to use to access it. The Derwent Valley Cycleway will eventually go through it as well. This land will be maintained at the cost of the homeowners in the development, although it is not going to be changed much. There will be no public rights of access by vehicle to the open space.
    6. Alan Squires will remain the point of contact for Wavensmere and Chevin Homes and any further questions on the development should be directed to him on 01332 840646.

More details now follow regarding the planning applications have been filed by Chevin Homes in May. The first is for the proposed indoor cricket club and community facility (please see link here, and type in the application no. AVA/2022/0371) and the second is a listed building consent application (same link as above, application no AVA/2022/0252) for removal of the all the roof covering of the Dye House and for it to be re-roofed.  Chevin Homes state they did not originally plan to replace the roof, but the timber is in good condition and they will re-use as many slates as possible and use reclaim slates where possible to match the existing. Waiting for approval for that and carrying out the work is bound to significantly delay the works. Work on the dye house was supposed to start in April, but it is already May and nothing has started. Meanwhile Wavensmere were hoping to start house building in May, but there is no sign of activity at present (19/5/22).

Regarding the indoor cricket centre application, objections were raised on 19/5/22 regarding the lack of parking, restricted access and congestion on the A6 and lack of consultation regarding the proposed indoor cricket centre. Specifically the objections were: 1) There is only provision for 6 medium sized cars (one being a space for a disabled driver) which would mean additional cars parking in surrounding roads; 2) There could be safeguarding issues for Milford School as there would now be public access to the rear of the school; 3) The narrow one car width access may lead to queuing on the A6 whilst vehicles wait for cars to exit; 4) Lack of proper consultation regarding this facility and lack of a provision for a general purpose community centre and playing field for the school, which the community had in the past made clear it had a need for.

Note, the deadline for other formal objections to the planning applications to Amber Valley Borough Council is 6th June 2022.

Chevin Homes and Wavensmere issued a press release on the 20th March describing their plans which is shown below:


Midlands’s property developers, Wavensmere Homes, has today announced its latest development, Milford Mills, which is situated on the A6 between Duffield and Belper. The 4.7 acres industrial heritage landmark will be transformed into 69 properties comprising one and two bedroom apartments and two, three and four bedroom homes.

In partnership with Chevin Homes, Milford Mills is located seven miles north of Derby city centre in the heart of the Derwent Valley. Positioned along the River Derwent, the new riverside development is set within the countryside landscapes of Milford village centre. The development includes circa 2500 sq. ft of ground floor retail space and 4500 sq. ft of office and commercial use at first floor level, split across two buildings; The Dye House and The Pattern House. Chevin Homes will be restoring these existing buildings to provide retail and leisure premises including a farm shop and community facilities.

This landmark part of Derbyshire’s industrial heritage dates back to 1780 when the former mills were some of the world’s first mechanised industrial spinning factories. This project will include the restoration of key historic features including the mill building, a 40-meter chimney and a lade for a hydro-electric mill that will be opened up and exposed.

The development sits on Milford Bridge which was built in 1793 by Jedediah Strutt, who was a hosier and cotton spinner from Belper, England. Jedediah Strutt is the man who connected and built all the sites in the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site – including The Belper and Milford Mills.

Wavensmere Homes and Chevin Homes are now transforming this site into a new development that will contain beautifully designed cottage-style homes, together with architects Gould Singleton. Design features include carefully selected natural stone facades to compliment the surrounding architecture of Milford and nearby Belper.

James Dickens, Managing Director at Wavensmere Homes says: “We are delighted to reveal our latest Derbyshire development, Milford Mills.  We look forward to working closely with Chevin Homes to produce a beautifully designed site that will be perfect for families, first-time buyers and investors. Milford Mills will offer peaceful, countryside living yet is also conveniently located within just a few miles of Derby centre. Derby is currently seeing huge economic regeneration and investment at the moment and we look forward to continuing to build communities in this region.”

John Fearnehough, Director at Chevin Homes says: “This development of this high profile and historic site is a labour of love for Chevin and now that we have cleared the site in readiness for development, we’re delighted be working with regeneration specialists Wavensmere on this special project.”

Work on Milford Mills will begin in spring 2022.

Prices at Milford Mills start from just £125,000. For further information on Milford Mills, contact Wavensmere Homes at or

About Wavensmere

Founded in 2004 Wavensmere Homes is a Midlands based property developer which specializes in unique renovation projects; restoring historic buildings to their former glory and transforming them into extraordinary developments, alongside creating high quality newly built homes. Led by Founder and Managing Director James Dickens, who also owns BJD (GB) Ltd, a successful investment and development company. The senior team at Wavensmere Homes has a strong background in traditional craftsmanship which means that they understand the importance of detail and quality, characteristics which shine through in every one of the company’s projects. Past projects include Crocketts Lane and The Forge in Birmingham, Ghyll House Farm in Horsham, Beatrice Court in Lichfield and The Convent in Lapworth. Current developments include Nightingale Quarter in Derby, a flagship project providing 796 properties including apartments and houses. Here is their website:

A link to their web-page on Milford Mills is here

About Chevin Homes

Chevin Homes was formed in Derby in 2002 by John Fearnehough and James Cokayne MRICS. The Friar Gate based firm has become well known for individual, high spec and stylish developments in top quality locations and is currently building in Derbyshire, Staffordshire, Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire. Visit for more information on future and current developments.

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