Cork museum wins major European award

Nano Nagle Place wins Council of Museum Prize in Strasbourg

A museum that highlights the work of the founder of the Presentation Sisters, Nano Nagle, has been awarded a major international prize.

Nano Nagle Place, an independent museum in Cork city, has received the Council of Museum Prize in Strasbourg.

The museum opened in 2017 and is named after Nagle (1718-1784), who returned from Paris to found the first of several schools for the poor in Cork. She eventually opened seven schools.

The complex on the site of the South Presentation Convent houses a museum, heritage rooms, gardens, a restaurant and bookshop, but it is also home to several educational charities. The Lantern Project and Cork Migrant Centre are based at the museum.

The prize, awarded annually since 1977, recognises museums that uphold the Council of Europe’s values of human rights and democratic citizenship.

It recognises museums that broaden knowledge and understanding of contemporary social problems.

Nano Nagle Place is the first Irish museum to win the prize since Monaghan County Museum in 1980.

Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe president Tiny Kox said the museum was an "exemplary place based on need, not on doctrine, providing long-term sustainable cultural and social services directly connected to the core museum story of innovative education and care of the poor and the excluded".

Nano Nagle Place chief executive Shane Clarke said it had a mission to take her values of education and social justice into the 21st century.

“To be recognised at the vanguard of museum practice in our work across heritage and community development, particularly the Lantern Project and the Cork Migrant Centre, confirms our belief that museums really can change the world,” she said.

Ronan McGreevy

Ronan McGreevy

Ronan McGreevy is a news reporter with The Irish Times