Enniskillen Workhouse back to the future

The remaining entrance block to the workhouse Credit: Fermanagh and Omagh Museum Services
A major new project is underway to transform the remaining Enniskillen Workhouse building into a business enterprise and heritage hub.

Development funding of £221,000 was awarded to Fermanagh and Omagh District Council and will be used to work up firm proposals for the project, which is being delivered in partnership with South West College, in order to secure the full £2.3million grant requested. 

Enniskillen Workhouse opened in 1844 to accommodate 1000 people who, due to a range of circumstances, found themselves in financial distress.   The main workhouse was demolished in 1964 and all that remains today is the Grade B2 listed Entrance Block, which is currently ‘at risk’ and in need of urgent repair.

The proposals will see the Entrance Block restored and brought back into use as a hub for business innovation and enterprise.  A mixed-use exhibition, reminiscence and display space will showcase the surviving workhouse records to tell its story and the people who were housed there for the first time.

“Without this investment the building and its history would be in real danger of being lost, and it is thanks to National Lottery players that these plans can be progressed further”.Paul Mullan, Head of HLF Northern Ireland

More than 100 local craftspeople and contractors will benefit from heritage skills training and 12 apprenticeships will be created.

Funding for the project was awarded through HLF’s Heritage Enterprise programme which has helped to transform the popular Bishop’s Gate Hotel, Derry and recently opened Titanic Hotel Belfast.

Paul Mullan, Head of HLF Northern Ireland, said: “This exciting project will utilise this hugely significant building to create a better future for the people of Enniskillen and beyond, while being sympathetic to its previous existence.”

“Without this investment the building and its history would be in real danger of being lost, and it is thanks to National Lottery players that these plans can be progressed further”.

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