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Silent Valley

Visitor Centre

There are a range of visitor facilities available at the valley including a restaurant, visitor, conference and education centres.

The visitor centre is an important asset which offers tremendous potential as an educational, community and tourist venue:

  • It houses photographs and artifacts from the original period from construction
  • Sit in a Water Commissioners Chair and post #SilentValley #mournewall100 
  • Discover the history of Belfast’s water supply and the role of the Belfast City and District Water Commissioners in the search for new supply
  • The Mourne wall and its restoration
  • The importance of the workers local to the area
  • Construction of the embankment
  • The cutting of the first sod 1923 and the reservoir opening in 1933
  • Bignian Tunnel 1952
  • Ben Crom Reservoir construction 1957

The local’s room is dedicated to the workers who built the reservoirs.

Telling the local history of the building of the reservoirs, it is divided into five areas:

  1. Information on the stone cutting known as “feathering” including a figure of a stone cutter sitting in his protective “hood” along with a small section of dry stone walling.
  2. Watertown area with a display of artefacts to show what life would have been like in those times.
  3. A replica of a section of inside the Bignian Tunnel, including a figure standing in the tunnel. The voices of former workers can be heard, telling their stories of how they met in the middle of Binnian mountain.
  4. Information board about the “Valley Jobs” names some of the worker’s jobs and the wages paid.
  5. Information about the hardships in finding the solid rock and the fact that it was almost abandoned.

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