About the project
Our Places, Our Pasts, Our Perspectives is a three–year project in which we will identify, promote and protect contested heritage and enhance its role in the process of inclusive placemaking in communities across NI. We will do this in two separate but related strands.
The project will embed contested heritage practice within inclusive community–led place–making. We will make heritage more accessible, valued and protected, developing thriving communities and new inclusive models of heritage practice.
This project is funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and is part of a wider partnership involving Queen’s University, Ulster University, Quarto, Causeway Coast & Glens Borough Council and Belfast City Council.
Strand 1: Community Heritage Development
In this strand we will work with community groups. In the preparation phase participants will map the heritage of their own areas, considering what gives their place its identity, who decides what value is given to it and what parts of it are contested. Participants will engage with a range of heritage practices including archaeology, material culture, cartographic and documentary sources.
Following this, participating groups will be invited to a weekend residential programme at the Corrymeela Centre, Ballycastle. Groups will visit contested heritage landscapes across the Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council area. Site visits include Ballycastle, Dungiven Priory, a plantation village at Movanagher, Coleraine and Dunluce Castle. Participants will explore historical and archaeological evidence from these sites and think about what that evidence reveals to us about the past.
Participants will reflect upon how their local area is perceived and valued and how they can use heritage to build an inclusive sense of place, benefitting both the heritage and the community. Each group will then develop a community–led heritage project in their own locality. The group will decide the focus of their project, with ongoing support from Corrymeela and our project partners.
Strand 2: Heritage Practice and Leadership Development Course
In strand 2, a heritage practice development programme will increase leadership capacity within the heritage and community sectors to actively engage with contested heritage as a tool for heritage protection, peacebuilding and reconciliation. This course is accredited by OCN and will focus on ethical and participatory practice and learning methodologies that utilise heritage landscapes, sites and collections.
How can I get involved?
We will work with 12 community groups throughout the three–year project– working with each for a period of around six months, with four groups participating per year. We want to hear from groups who are committed to working with contested heritage in a divided society.
For our heritage practice course, we welcome applications from community leaders and professionals from across all areas of the heritage and community development sectors in NI. We will run the course three times over the course of the project and each cohort will comprise of 20 participants.
If you would like to be involved in either strand of the project, please use the contact details below or sign up to our mailing list.
For further information please contact Rhianne Morgan (Heritage Project Coordinator) via email: firstname.lastname@example.org