Tuesday 7 August 2012

New exhibition marks 'Decade of Centenaries'

A new interactive exhibition, detailing some of the many important centenaries being marked in Belfast over the coming years, has opened at the City Hall.

Adopting the theme `Shared History – Different Allegiances`, the exhibition focuses on key events that took place in the period between 1912 and 1914. It is the first in a series of three exhibitions which will be staged as part of Belfast City Council`s Decade of Centenaries programme for the years 1912 - 1922.

This first exhibition focuses on a range of events, including the campaigns for and against Home Rule, the signing of the Ulster Covenant, the growth of the volunteer armies, gun running, the suffrage movement and the Gaelic revival.

The exhibition includes photographs, archive film footage and artefacts to give a flavour of life in Belfast in the years between 1912 and the outbreak of the First World War. It also features summary biographies of many key players from the period, such as Edward Carson, James Craig, John Redmond, James Connolly, FJ Bigger, Joe Devlin, Lord Pirrie, Thomas Sinclair, Lady Londonderry, Eoin MacNeill, Winifred Carney, James Larkin, Alice Milligan, Bulmer Hobson, Roger Casement and Norah Connolly, with listening stations affording the opportunity to hear the various personalities speak.

Visitors can also check online whether their ancestors signed the Covenant, through access to the PRONI website. The exhibition will be on display in the East foyer of the City Hall until the end of February 2013.

A full supporting programme of events will take place between the beginning of September and mid-November. This will include talks by leading experts such as Eamon Phoenix and Graham Walker, specially-commissioned dramas by Padraig Coyle, Philip Orr and Alan McGuckian, a photographic exhibition looking at how Belfast has changed over the last 100 years and a special debate chaired by Fergal Keane.

Further events are planned for early next year, examining the role of women and the campaign for female suffrage and the role of the trade unions during this period in Belfast`s history.

The `Decade of Centenaries` exhibition has been commissioned by Belfast City Council in partnership with the Linen Hall Library and PRONI.

More information.