Exciting new Shantallow History Project : 1916-1966

A new project to establish a permanent history of Shantallow, Ballyarnett and the Middle Liberties from 1916 to 1966 was launched in late 2015.  It aims to build a digital memory bank, which can then be used to develop a range of heritage resources - exhibitions, a book, smartphone apps, tourism kiosks, heritage trails etc...

The area, formerly known as the Middle Liberties, more commonly known today as Greater Shantallow is home to up to 30,000 of Derry’s citizens. But until 50 years ago, this area was essentially a rural community.  Despite the fact that this area had both a distinct and defined populous, no proper history of its origins or its people, exists – nor is there any authoritative record of its important contribution to regional, national and global heritage.

The project partners intend to correct that and are particularly keen to capture oral histories, stories and photographs from those who lived in the area before 1966, and the housing boom. The research will include the WW One; Amelia Earhart’s arrival; the Racecourse; agriculture/ farming / markets; local traditions / folklore; introduction of the border; industry; rural villages and hamlets – Steelstown, Ballyarnett, Galliagh, Coshquin; the old railway and other transport; WWII and the Collon bomb; the camp for Gibraltarians; the U.S.  Army camps; schools and churches; sports; and smuggling.


  Amelia & Gallagher Family May 24th 1932                   Willie Foster's Band, Collon Derry

The project wishes to collaborate with remaining members of the old Middle Liberties community to establish a memory bank – in the form of a digital archive (initially) – to preserve the history of the area for future generations.

For more information contact Sean Quinn on E. [email protected]

Have a look at an early version of the website :- www.shantallowarchive.org/map

It’s still in a fairly raw state but it's been established as a useful platform to drive the project forward...    more to follow.