Living the Lockout is a joint initiative of Dublin City Council, the Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) and the Irish Heritage Trust. Set in a former tenement on Dublin’s Henrietta Street, it enables the public to directly experience the harsh realities of tenement living during 1913 Lockout. The experience opened on 4 July and will run for two months only until the end of August at No.14 Henrietta Street. For further information and ticket sales see http://bit.ly/19v9o2r. The 35-minute drama element of the experience is performed by the award-winning ANU Productions.This is the first in a series of activities to mark the centenary of the historic 1913 Lockout and is part of Ireland’s Decade of Commemorations.
Dublin’s Lord Mayor, Councillor Oisín Quinn said: “This project is groundbreaking. It brings history to life. This large early Georgian house, originally designed for one family, by the turn of the last century had become a typical Dublin tenement and was home to more than 100 people. Entering the ground floor now is like entering a time capsule which transports the 21st century visitor back to 1913. The use of drama, archival records, photographs and personal testimonies, in what is quite a compact space, brings the history of the experience to life.”
Dublin City Council’s Heritage Officer, Charles Duggan, explains the significance behind the use of 14 Henrietta Street – which is part of the single most intact and important architectural collection of individual early-eighteenth century houses, as a street, in Europe – in Living the Lockout: “In 2006 Dublin City Council adopted the Henrietta Street Conservation Plan to safeguard and celebrate the heritage of the street, a central plank of which is a commitment to facilitate better public access to and mediation of the cultural heritage of Henrietta Street. In this context, in 2008, the Council initiated a phased programme for the conservation and repair of 14 Henrietta Street. Following the completion of major structural works to safeguard the house, we repaired and reinstated the windows and doors last year. Further phases of work will be needed to bring the house back into permanent use.”
Sally Anne Kinahan, ICTU 1913 Commemoration Committee commented: “Living the Lockout features intense and passionate scenes that capture the heady optimism of the strikers at the beginning of their struggle in August 1913; the desperation of the families as they faced ruin and possible starvation in the run-up to Christmas 1913 and the hard choices that confronted the workers and their families as the Lockout neared its end in early 1914.”
Kevin Baird, CEO of the Irish Heritage Trust – a charity – said that he was delighted with the huge interest that has already been shown in this project: “The Irish Heritage Trust was set up to look after special places and help create opportunities for people to get involved in heritage in Ireland. There has been considerable interest generated locally and further afield in the project and we hope to build on this passion and support for the longer term.”
Dublin Tenement Experience: Living the Lockout will be open six days per week – it’s closed on Wednesdays – from 4 July to 31 August 2013 only. Tickets – which cost €5 for adults with a concession rate of €3 – will be on sale using the LINK and early booking is advised as thousands of visitors are expected over the next couple of months. Tickets can also be purchased at 14 Henrietta Street itself or by phone – for groups – at 01-8748030.
Support for the Project
The project partners gratefully acknowledge the funding towards the Dublin Tenement Experience: Living the Lockout received from Dublin City Council, IMPACT Trade Union, SIPTU, Mandate, the Communications’ Workers Union (CWU) and ICTU. We also acknowledge the additional support of Dublin City Council who have provided the temporary use No.14 Henrietta Street for the duration of the project and the Irish Heritage Trust, who, in conjunction with the partnership, has developed and delivered this experience. The project partners also gratefully acknowledge the expertise and support of the 1913 Committee.