AN exhibition of over 600 photographs charting the history of Lenadoon will open to the public at the Glen Community Complex on Suffolk Road from Tuesday 21 to Wednesday 22 September.
The exhibition was compiled by members of the Glen Community Complex Local Seniors Tuesday Club and the Lenadoon Cultural Group, thanks to funding from the National Lottery Community Fund.
It features the work of local photographers such as Michael Valente and former Oliver Plunkett school teacher Kevin Smith.
The project was managed by Belfast Exposed co-founder and documentary photographer Sean McKernan who has almost 40 years of experience in developing local community photography projects and whose work has been exhibited internationally.
The project invited local residents, community groups, special interest projects and local businesses to contribute to the exhibition. Following the exhibition the group aims to collate and preserve this unique body of work to further showcase the social, cultural and political history of Lenadoon.
The exhibition reflects events such as The Battle of Lenadoon in July 1972 and the ending of the IRA ceasefire and how the demographics of the community changed following the start of the Troubles in 1969 which evolved into the current population of approximately 15,000.
The exhibition also charts the development of Colin Glen Forest Park, buildings such as the old Suffolk House, the Pig Factory and the old Daily Mirror Building as well as past festivals, cultural events and most importantly the personal photographic history and stories captured by the local community.
Project manager, Sean McKernan said: "We are confident the exhibition will demonstrate significant local support and act as a cohesive and inclusive project.
"It will provide a platform for the wider community to not only celebrate the diverse history of Lenadoon but also provide the opportunity to reflect on past challenges and celebrations and highlight current social issues which will contribute to a fresh debate on how to shape future local needs.
"The group now intends to explore how best to continue the project with a view to further developing the exhibition and examine the possibility of a publication. With this in mind we still invite members of the local community to bring any old photographs of Lenadoon to the exhibition were staff will copy and return original images.
"In addition given the current Covid-19 crisis we are confident the project will play a pivotal role in assisting the community to recover, rebuilt and harness social solidarity.
"This crisis has accelerated a movement of community power that has already taken shape, largely unseen and unreported and we are confident that this project will help the Lenadoon community to rebuild, recover and reconnect" he added.