Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council’s Coleraine Museum launched two new exhibitions on entitled, ‘Sensing the Past: Irish History Starts Here’ and ‘A Sense of the Past’.
‘A Sense of the Past’ is a travelling exhibition developed by the Royal National Institute of Blind People Northern Ireland with the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund.
It provides the first social history of blindness in Northern Ireland and provided the inspiration and backdrop for Coleraine Museum to consider how to engage local people with visual impairment in our museums.
The ‘Sensing the Past: Irish History Starts Here’ exhibition is the result of a twelve month community engagement programme run by Coleraine Museum. The programme which is part of the Northern Ireland Museums Council Community Engagement Initiative funded by Heritage Lottery Fund.
It was designed to improve exhibitions within the museum by making them more accessible to those with visual impairments
The exhibition was developed by NIMC CEI trainee Dr Nic Wright and local participants with visual impairment. It explored five key stories from the local history of Coleraine ranging from Ireland’s first settlement at Mountsandel through to 17th century Coleraine, finishing with the story of the blind bards.
Deputy Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Councillor Darryl Wilson who officially opened the exhibition, said: “I’d like to thank those involved in the exhibition and community engagement programme for their vital contributions in delivering this exhibition. I’m delighted to see group members from the programme here today.
“Both exhibitions make excellent use of interactive audio descriptions and handling objects which make the exhibitions accessible to sighted and visually impaired visitors alike.”
Both exhibitions will be open at the Town Hall from Tuesday to Saturday, 11am to 4pm until June 30.