Ballynahinch Heritage Project Launched By Down Museum
DOWN County Museum has launched a new initiative to record the history of trades and businesses in Ballynahinch.
Ballynahinch is one of the most historic market towns in County Down with a wealth of information still to be uncovered. Although its role in the story of 1798 is well known, its contribution to the economic and social life of the area is still to be fully recognised. Working with museum staff, groups and individuals in Ballynahinch are now looking to create a greater awareness of the town’s business and mercantile heritage.
During 2010 members of the Down Business Forum and the Downpatrick Lions Club worked with the museum on a PEACE III funded community history project to publicise the commercial history of the County town. The result was an extremely popular book and DVD which brought to life the story of trades and industries. The project was so successful that it was felt that other towns could benefit from this approach.
Ballynahinch was chosen as an ideal place to work in as it has grown from a market town serving a rural hinterland to a thriving centre today. It is hoped that the townspeople will get involved in this initiative in a variety of ways.
Already staff and volunteers from the museum have been out and about gathering memories and stories from local people and to increase knowledge of what is happening the museum is holding an information day for all local people and groups in Ballynahinch Leisure Centre on Saturday 8th October.
The purpose of the day is to gather photos, information, stories and objects which illustrate Ballynahinch’s rich history which can be used in future museum publications and exhibitions. Staff from Down County Museum will be available on the day to record information and update people on what will be happening. Anyone wishing to contribute information or wanting to find out more can come along to the Centre between 1pm and 4pm.