Monday 24 February 2014

New cultural and heritage centre for central Dublin

Parliament Buildings, College Green, Dublin
A new cultural and heritage centre is to be developed at Parliament Buildings, College Green, Dublin. The Bank of Ireland is releasing space for this use for a period of ten years, and will even cover the costs of refurbishment and operation of the centre. Management of the centre will be by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (DAHG).

The ten-year licence will run alongside the Decade of Centenaries. It is envisaged that exhibitions at the new Centre will include a significant focus on key events in Irish history right up to the centenary of Civil War, which led to the creation of modern Ireland.

Announcing the partnership today Jimmy Deenihan TD, Minister of the DAHG, welcomed the Bank of Ireland's decision to make the space available to the state. "The importance of the College Green buildings is recognised by us all. These are nationally and internationally important heritage buildings which have played a significant role in Irish history.

"I now look forward to work taking place to prepare this space and to plan the exhibitions. I hope this Cultural and Heritage Centre will be enjoyed by as many people as possible when open, and that the centre will be an integral part of Dublin City in the years ahead."

Once opened, the public will access the Cultural and Heritage Centre via the James Gandon-designed entrance to the College Green buildings on Westmoreland Street. The Bank of Ireland will also facilitate guided access to the House of Lords for the Centre's visitors.

While work is underway to prepare the space for its new role, Minister Deenihan will ask an expert committee drawn from the national cultural institutions and other city institutions to advise him on a programme of exhibitions and events to take place at the centre. This programme will have a significant focus on the social, economic and political events of the Decade of Centenaries.