Environment Minister Mark H Durkan has announced the appointment of contractors to design a replacement roof for the Great Tower or Keep at Carrickfergus Castle.
Belfast-based Kennedy-FitzGerald Architects will oversee the design works, which are part of one of the most important projects in the 800 year history of Carrickfergus Castle.
DOE has looked to medieval and Tudor history for inspiration. The roof will be an historically-appropriate timber A-frame ‘butt-purlin’, which will be made in an authentic traditional manner by a scribe woodwright.
It will replace a leaking flat roof, which was put into the castle in the 1930s.
Welcoming this historic milestone Environment Minister Mark H Durkan said: “Carrickfergus Castle is a treasured historic monument, one of the best-preserved medieval castles on these Islands. It is a key heritage asset and it is also a major economic asset for the whole region. I want to secure the long-term conservation of Carrickfergus Castle so that generations of people today and in the future can continue to enjoy the site and so that it can continue to contribute to our society and economy.
“This castle has stood for over 800 years on our coastline. This project marks a major phase in the castle’s history, with the design of a roof of green Irish oak, made in an historically and traditionally authentic way.
“This project is one that really demonstrates how important our built and archaeological heritage is to our local economy. It is a major attraction for visitors from all over the world as well as closer to home. It is a project that also underlines the importance of specialist construction skills, especially craft conservation skills that are needed to conserve our unique heritage sites and buildings.”