Nerve Centre leads Easter Rising, Battle of Somme ‘hub’

Karen O'Rawe, Chair of History Hub Ulster, pictured with actor and director Paul Kennedy and David Lewis, Nerve Centre's Director of Communications and Digital Content.
Karen O'Rawe, Chair of History Hub Ulster, pictured with actor and director Paul Kennedy and David Lewis, Nerve Centre's Director of Communications and Digital Content.

A large-scale cultural heritage programme exploring key events such as the Easter Rising and Battle of the Somme was launched this week in Derry.

The Creative Centenaries programme, led by the Nerve Centre, is a hub for information and resources around the Decade of Centenaries.

Throughout 2016, it will help to shine a light on some of the key centenaries through creative, artistic and cultural approaches.

The programme launch saw the announcement of dozens of events across film, music, drama, talks, lectures, conferences, family days and more.

Supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Creative Centenaries programme will see the launch of major exhibitions in the Tower Museum in Derry, running from April-November.

An outreach strand will use creativity and new digital technologies to engage thousands of young people and adults, with free workshops in schools and community settings.

Highlights include the ‘#Untold Stories Exhibition’, a major exhibition opening at the Tower Museum in early April highlighting the impact of the seismic events of 1916 on the people of the north west.

David Lewis, Director of Communications and Digital Content at the Nerve Centre, is excited by the programme which, he says, “gives a flavour of how the region’s creative and cultural industries are playing a key role in capturing people’s imaginations, telling new stories, and exploring multiple interpretations of the events of 1916.

“The aim of Creative Centenaries is to open up opportunities for debate, discussion and exploration of events such as the Easter Rising and Battle of the Somme, in an inclusive, respectful way,” he added.

Paul Mullan, Head of HLF Northern Ireland, added: “Past events within the Decade of Centenaries still have huge importance for us today, shaping our understanding of ourselves, our communities and our future. It is with thanks to National Lottery players that we can support these exciting plans to revisit our history, using new and exciting techniques that will interest and inspire a wide range of audiences, and we are delighted to be involved.”

Peter Osborne, Chairperson, Community Relations Council, revealed that the project will deliver digital skills training workshops using a range of award-winning resources including curriculum-linked graphic novels, iBooks on the events of 1916 and new animations on the Easter Rising and Battle of the Somme.

For more, check out www.creativecentenaries.org.