Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 16 April 2014

Sculpture of Derry factory girls 'by next year'

A sculpture to commemorate the thousands of shirt factory women who turned Londonderry into an industrial powerhouse will be unveiled in 2013 — after six years of delays.

A work schedule for the public artwork at Harbour Square behind the Guildhall is now agreed.

The latest development was welcomed at this week’s meeting of Derry City Council’s Development Committee.

Meanwhile, a leaked draft of the programme for the UK City of Culture year in 2013 revealed a series of events marking the massive impact local factory women have had on shaping Derry.

Councillors and officers met with the North West Development Office several weeks ago about artist Louise Walsh’s Factory Girls sculpture.

Staff from the Development Office said they were committed to the project.

They outlined the need to ensure disability access and iron out issues around ongoing works at the Guildhall.

The Department for Social Development, which is funding the project, has been issued with a |revised schedule of the cost of the project.

It was agreed that a schedule to have the work completed and on site by the summer of the UK City of Culture year was achievable.

A spokeswoman for Derry City Council said: “This would coincide with a planned series of exhibitions and education work being proposed by the City of Culture Company for 2013 celebrating the working lives of women in the shirt industry.”

Sinn Fein Councillor Maeve McLaughlin welcomed progress on the issue.

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