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Somme Heritage Centre
Ranked #3 of 24 things to do in Newtownards
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Somme Museum The Somme Museum opened in 1994, it examines Ireland's role in the First World War, with special reference to local cross-community involvement in the three volunteer Divisions raised in Ireland: the 10th and 16th (Irish) Divisions, and the 36th (Ulster) Division. The Museum is fully registered and accredited and houses an extensive collection of material from the Great War period which is displayed on a rotational basis. The collection includes uniforms, medals, weapons and personal items which tell the stories of those who served, fought and experienced the First World War. Visitors to the Museum have an opportunity to experience the sights and sounds of the First World War as they make their way from the Home Rule Crisis to the Recruiting Office and on to the trenches of the Western Front. Audio visual displays and experienced and knowledgeable guides bring the experience to life.
Reviewed February 20, 2014

The Somme Heritage Centre is situated midway between the homes of 2 of my married daughters so I have passed it many many times and never thought of visiting it--partly I must say because it is not visible from the road and other than a 'brown sign' is not well advertised.----However my young grandson 9 years of age is hearing all about the great war in school and was quizzing me about it---his mum wondered if it would be worth a trip to the museum in Belfast and I said there is one just 5 mins drive away--the Somme Heritage Centre--she hadn't even heard of it !!!---I agreed to take young Charlie--didn't know what to expect---but what a super experience it turned out to be for both of us. I learnt a lot of new things about WW1 and Charlie got up close and personal with a machine gun and tried on army uniform and toted a Lee Enfield 303

The centre is superbly laid out extremely informative / interesting and is innovative in the ways it communicates--it is a very fitting memorial the the brave men of the Somme.

There is a guided tour every hour on the hour. The guide we had --Matthew was great--full of enthusiasm and able to entertain all ages in the group. He led us thro. the streets of Belfast just prior to the war then to a recruiting office--through the trenches past a field hospital and finally to no man's land all very realistic reconstructions with well thought out audio visual presentations.

We thoroughly enjoyed the experience--it was reasonably priced and an added bonus is the restaurant --very clean,light and airy--quite an extensive menu and tasty

This place is well worth a visit. Given our past troubles it shows how men from the North and South of Ireland from Orange and Green fought and died together in terrible conditions.

I think more needs to be done to market the centre. Regardless of age or background, local or tourist there is much of interest for everyone. Even to take a leaf out of the Ulster Folk Museum book--large advertising banners at the roadside would remind/inform the passing public of it's existance

5  Thank douglas56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (146)
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"first world war"
in 11 reviews
"worth a visit"
in 15 reviews
"guided tour"
in 11 reviews
"front line"
in 4 reviews
"sound effects"
in 4 reviews
"brave men"
in 3 reviews
"true stories"
in 2 reviews
"excellent museum"
in 3 reviews
"their lives"
in 2 reviews
"small museum"
in 3 reviews
"knowledgeable guides"
in 3 reviews
"school groups"
in 2 reviews
"visitor experience"
in 2 reviews
"coffee shop"
in 5 reviews
"great for kids"
in 2 reviews
"all ages"
in 4 reviews
"great place to visit"
in 2 reviews

94 - 98 of 146 reviews

Reviewed November 28, 2013 via mobile

The layout fantastic. Guys came off shop floor. Signed up. Said goodbye. Then trained.then front line. Injuries horific.conditions terrible. Display brought war to.life so many lost. Then korean war. Again fighting a brutal enemy. Heroes doesnt describe the men adequitely

5  Thank darrierob
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 23, 2013 via mobile

Can't make up its mind whether it is a memorial to the 16th (Ulster) Division or a commemoration of all Irish divisions, so very unfocused.

1  Thank Alanilford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 22, 2013

There is nothing to dislike about this attraction. It is pure history come alive, and the staff are amazingly knowledgeable about their subject. The walk through the trenches gives a slight taste of what life must have been like for soldiers at the Somme and the guides have a wealth of information at their fingertips. Also do go to the small museum which is packed with really fascinating artefacts ample parking, too, and a nice tea room.

2  Thank Ann C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 26, 2013

I took my dad here for a visit, reasonable entry fee £5.75 adults, children & senior citizens £4.75. We were met by
Mr Gamble, our very pleasant and enthusiastic tour guide. As there were only a small number of us we had the opportunity to ask lots of questions which he readily answered. The tour was very informative and well laid out. It gave a feel of how horrific the trenches were for the young men during the war. There is also a great exhibition at the end of the tour and a cafe which was very clean and tidy with reasonable prices. This centre is well worth a visit if you are interested war history.

4  Thank Joynel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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