After many years of providing access to the arts for people in the Galliagh and Shantallow areas of Derry, staff at Greater Shantallow Community arts (GSCA) say they are just weeks away from the official opening of a fully equipped arts centre at Skeoge Industrial Estate.
Deputy First Minister, Martin McGuinness, officially launched a mural at Bloomfield in Galliagh informing local residents about the soon to open facility.
Welcoming the announcement of the ‘Studio 2’ phase one completion, the Deputy First Minister paid tribute to Oliver Green, GSCA Arts Director, and his staff, for the sterling work in bringing to fruition a hub that will give the population of Greater Shantallow a state-of-the-art community arts centre.
The Deputy First Minister said: “I’m absolutely delighted to be at the unveiling today. Ollie and his staff do tremendous work in the Outer North community and this is testament to their endeavours. Indeed, I look forward to the opening at Skeoge in the near future.
“As I’ve said many times before, the talent in this city is incredible within the arts, dance, music and song genres. A prime example was this group’s recent successful Talent North West competition. It’s hoped that Phase 1 of the new centre will be in full swing in the coming weeks with the announcement of a programme of arts to cater for all the community’s needs.”
Studio 2 Arts Director, Oliver Green said: “It’s taken us time to get this to this point but I believe all the hard work will pay dividends for the people of the Greater Shantallow area and further afield.
“We will offer facilities that are second-to-none, and give the community an all-encompassing arts centre that caters for everyone’s needs, be they four years old or 80 years old!”
The new centre at Skeoge will see a number of studios catering for all art forms, from music to drama, digital to dance, film, carnival, musical extravaganza, radio and TV while also appealing to all genres.
Praising the ambitions of GSCA, Northside Development Trust’s Joe Martin added: “The Board of Derry Northside Development Trust is pleased to be associated with the Studio 2 Project. When approached, we were happy to assist, with other agencies, in the delivery of the ambitions of Greater Shantallow Community Arts in this project. Their ‘stop-at-nothing’ approach to making things happen for the benefit of the young people and wider community of the Outer North area particularly impressed us.”