2016 - another big year as Maritime Museum to open

Derry’s Maritime Museum should be completed by April 2016, it has been revealed.

During the recent briefing of the Office of First Minister and Deputy First Minister (OFMDFM) Committee in Derry, Ilex’s Caoimhín Corrigan revealed the scheme may be finished in three years’ time.

“The Maritime Museum is a Derry City Council-led project and is proposed for completion in March or April of 2016,” he told the committee.

“As things stand, that is a stage 1 pass from the Northern Ireland Tourist Board (NITB) of £1.5 million and a stage 1 pass from the HLF (Heritage Lottery Fund) of £3 million.

“Ilex has budgeted for an amount of up to £2 million, which sees in excess of £6 million earmarked already for this project with an amount of certainty.

“Obviously, it needs to be bottomed out with a final business case and environmental assessment (EA) approval,” he said.

The proposed museum will be based at Ebrington and will trace Derry’s maritime history from the early beginnings of the city, through to its emergence as a major commercial and military port.

It will be housed in two listed buildings at the former naval base and will allow public access to more than 30,000 documents which are currently inaccessible.

The £8.5m museum will chart the city’s history from Colmcille’s establishment of the original Christian settlement on the Foyle, through the arrival of the Spanish Armada, the Flight of the Earls, the Plantation of Ulster and the Siege of Derry.

Emigration and military and naval history, including Derry’s role in the Battle of the Atlantic, will also feature in the new museum attraction.