The Community Relations Council and Heritage Lottery Fund organised the first 'Remembering the Future’ conference in March 2011 attend by over 250 representatives of governments, departments, agencies, councils and groups.  

The decade of centenaries from 2011 - 2023 marks a number of particularly important anniversaries that have shaped the sense of British and Irish identity in Northern Ireland in the 20th century.

The first step was to bring interested groups together including the city council, cultural organisations and academics, as we sought to influence and support context setting.

This developed into a non-decision-making, non-executive group called the Decade of Centenaries Roundtable. We went on to develop a set of principles for remembering in public space based on acceptance and inclusion, on thinking ethically, on the need to encompass all our stories, based on an understanding of history, wider context and evidence.

A discussion paper was drafted and the principles were launched at s March 2011 conference. The Roundtable grew to include departments, agencies, cultural and heritage organisations, libraries, arts organisations, district councils and groups. We meet quarterly to share information and play a part in planning and organising conferences, publications and resources fairs.

What worked well and what, if anything, didn't?

Source Review of the Decade of Centenaries 2017 Survey undertaken by Stratagem: 

  • 70%, reported increased learning in relation to commemoration and or contested histories was the overall effect of marking the centenaries on organisations. 

What are we achieving through the decade related work, responding to the following statements: 

  • 84% reported, It's important to understand the context about what really happened.
  • 79% reported, We acknowledge and respect that not everyone sees the past in the way we do.  

Use of Principles, Networks and Resources: Key Findings

  • Of the organisations that responded to the survey, 57% did not have an official policy, framework or principles for marking centenaries. 

Those that responded found the following resources were beneficial, informative or relevant: 

  • CRC/HLF Principles of Remembering in Public Space (93%)
  • Decade of Anniversaries Toolkit (2013)  (74%)
  • Remembering the Future Conference Publication (2012) (66%)
  • Titanic and Ulster Museum Resource Fairs (2016) (64%)
  • Remembering the Future Lecture series (2012) and Discussion Paper (2011) (59% respectively)

Further Information

Deirdre MacBride, dmacbride@nicrc.org.uk, www.nicrc.org.uk