Decade of Centenaries Programme

The Decade of Centenaries programme commenced in 2012 and will focus initially on the many significant centenaries occurring over the period 1912–1916. The Programme will complement the ongoing programme of annual commemorations with special centenary commemorative events on the anniversaries of key events. The Decade of Centenaries Programme provides an opportunity to focus on the development of access to historical records and primary sources from the time period, and for working with local and national cultural bodies to bring forward a series of exhibitions and public discussions. We will also work with stakeholders from representative bodies and the community and voluntary sector to facilitate commemorative initiatives.

The programme will be broad and inclusive, highlighting the economic and social conditions of the period, the shifts in cultural norms and the experience of the Irish abroad. Important events being commemorated include the Centenary of the Ulster Covenant, the foundation of the Irish Volunteers, the Home Rule and Land Bills, the 1913 Lockout, the 1916 Rising and many anniversaries relating to World War One, including the Gallipoli landings, the Somme offensive and the battle of Messines Ridge. Also of note will be the Literary Revival, the suffrage movement, the struggle for workers’ rights and many other key events and themes of the period.

The programme will encompass the different traditions on the island of Ireland and aims to enhance understanding of and respect for events of importance among the population as a whole. The official programme will provide an opportunity to focus on the everyday experience of ordinary people living in extraordinary times, as well as on the leaders and key actors in these events. The programme will offer fresh insights and constructive dialogue, and aims to foster deeper mutual understanding among people from different traditions on the island of Ireland.