THE new multi-million pound Museum of Free Derry opens its doors to the public on Monday.
The new look premises at Glenfada Park in the Bogside will feature, not only the sights but the sounds from one of the city’s most turbulent periods.
Focussing on Bloody Sunday and the era from 1968 to 1972 the museum is located where much of the history that it portrays occurred.
The new building is yards from the spot where Bloody Sunday victims Jim Wray and William McKinney were shot dead.
A key feature of the new facility is the use of audio from the period. As they walk through exhibits, visitors are exposed to the haunting sounds of British army radio, riots, protest songs and even the sounds of the Bloody Sunday shots being fired.
Among the exhibits are the clothes worn by Bloody Sunday victims, Michael McDaid and Jim Wray, with the deadly bullet holes clearly visible.
The external façade of the building features a newly commissioned sculpture by award-winning artist, Locky Morris showing a wave form of the civil rights’ anthem “We Shall Overcome” etched into metal.
Museum manager Adrian Kerr said the development of the new museum had been a “long, hard road.”
Mr Kerr said: “It is, we feel, a stunning building that places this history in a place where it deserved to be, in a flagship building that shows how important this history is and how important it is that people come here to learn about it.”
Among those contributing audio voice-overs to the exhibits are John Kelly and Jean Hegarty, whose brothers, Michael Kelly (17) and Kevin McElhinney (17) were shot dead on Bloody Sunday.
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