Exhibits include the Taisie Banner from the first Glens Feis in 1904
On the north coast of Ireland, where there is a plentiful supply of fish, access to the hinterland, Scotland and the sources of raw materials for tools, there has been a human presence for over 9,000 years. Developed around the safe harbour beside the Margy River, Ballycastle has undergone changing fortunes since the 17th century - periods of expansion; exciting moments of political intrigue and daring adventure; and times of decline. Today the town, situated in scenic splendour near the Giant’s Causeway, enjoys increased activity and a growth in tourism.
Ballycastle Museum was opened by Moyle District Council in 1976. In 1983 the Clarke collection, now known as the Irish Home Industries collection, was donated. Today the Museum includes a display of objects from that collection which dates back to 1904 and is located within an 18th century listed building, formerly the Market Building and Courthouse. There is also material on display that highlights the industrial development of Ballycastle by Hugh Boyd during 18th century, the ’Oul’ Lammas Fair’, Marconi’s work and more recently, the 20th century social and commercial activity in the town including the Taisie Banner from the first Glens Feis in 1904. Moyle District Council is a partner in the Causeway Museum Service with Coleraine, Limavady and Ballymoney Borough Councils.
In 1998, Ballycastle Museum was granted provisional registration from the Museums and Galleries Commission. Moyle District Council has plans to refurbish this historic building to appropriate standards of museum facilities. In the meantime, Moyle District Council and the Causeway Museum Service, assisted by grant aid from the Northern Ireland Museums Council, are working to improve the quality of display through better interpretation, new labels and increased collections care for the benefit of our visitors.
The Museum is open at 59 Castle Street, Ballycastle in July and August, 12- 6 pm, Mon - Sat, or by arrangement. Admission is free. Telephone +44 (0) 28 207 62942 for further details.