Derry Girls fans to get first sneak peak of new exhibition collection
Anyone feeling a bit forlorn since the curtains closed on hit comedy show Derry Girls, will be delighted to have the chance to see some familiar items from the series on display at Visit Derry next week.
The display is a taster of an exciting new exhibition due to open in the Tower Museum in July, showcasing original sets, props and the 90’s memorabilia that brought the show to life.
The taster display will open on March 16 at the visitor information centre, and local people are invited to go along and give their feedback ahead of the launch of the wider Derry Girls exhibition.
Tourism N. Ireland has provided funding to deliver the pilot exhibition, building on the popular Derry Girls brand which has gained worldwide recognition since the show. Council’s Museum Services has also provided funding to make this an very interactive, immersive visitor experience in the Tower Museum.
The plans were rubber stamped by Derry City and Strabane District Council in January, and since then Council’s Museum Team has been working closely with Hat Trick Productions on securing a selection of key items from the show to be included in the collection. Visit Derry have also carried out extensive engagement with local businesses to help create a ‘Derry Girls Experience’ trail which will be part of a wider visitor experience this summer.
Mayor of Derry and Strabane, Councillor Sandra Duffy, said she was looking forward to getting a sneak peak of the collection. “Like everyone who’s a fan of the show, I’ve been missing the antics of Erin, Michelle, Clare, Orla and James since Derry Girls ended. The show has become such an important vehicle for promoting Derry, which has taken on a momentum all of its own, thanks to the wonderful vision and insight of Lisa McGee.
“It’s really important that we build on that new awareness, and continue to connect with fans of the series who want to continue their Derry Girls journey and see for themselves what makes this part of the world so special. I’m really looking forward to seeing the final exhibition when it all comes together in July.”
Council’s Head of Culture, Aeidin McCarter, said: “We have had great feedback since the plans for a pilot Derry Girls exhibition were announced in January. I think everyone recognises the real value of the Derry Girls brand in terms of tourism potential, with more than 2.5 million people right across the world tuning in to watch the show, resulting in great national and international exposure for the city and wider region.
“This exhibition will create an immersive visitor experience completely unique to Derry that will showcase both our history and the cultural scene at that time, as captured so vividly in the show, and generate greater interest in the DCSDC area as a major visitor destination.”
Chief Executive of Visit Derry, Odhran Dunne, said: “Derry Girls has provided an incredible opportunity to raise the profile of the destination and inspire visits from audiences around the world. We regularly undertake promotions in international markets and are encouraged to see there is fantastic awareness of Derry Girls with a huge fan base all around the globe.
“From speaking to locals and visitors daily at our Visitor Information Centre, we know there is strong demand to enjoy the Derry Girls inspired tours and experiences on offer here. Fans already visit to walk the same streets as the characters, devour Derry Girls-themed afternoon teas and take selfies at the UV Arts Derry Girls mural on Orchard Street. The new Derry Girls pilot experience opening this summer will undoubtedly bolster the existing Derry Girls tourism experiences on offer and allow us to further connect with fans of the show as they immerse themselves in the world of Derry Girls. Ahead of the pilot opening, we are excited to host the taster display which gives a glimpse of some of the original props from the show and we look forward to engaging with fans to see what they hope to see in the exhibition.”
The pilot Derry Girls exhibition to be unveiled in July will feature set dressings, furniture and original props from the TV show, in partnership with Hat Trick Productions. The Tower Museum will also use technology to provide some interactive elements to the exhibition and create user-friendly visitor experience. The exhibition will work alongside other assets such as the Derry Girls mural, filming location tours and Derry Girls afternoon tea experience, to firmly establish the city as the home of Derry Girls.
The taster display will be available to view at the Visit Derry building in Waterloo Street from March 16 until June 23.