Fortress Spike Island, Cork Harbour, Ireland

Nestled within the sheltered lower reaches of one of the largest natural harbours in the world, Spike Island is a small place with a rich and varied history.  It benefits from a strategic location within a deep water harbour that has allowed it to function, at different times, both as a military fortress and as a prison.  It’s location also posed some unique strategic and interpretative challenges for the interpretative designer.

Fortress Spike Island is a multi-phase project to provide a world class heritage tourism attraction on Spike Island - known as "Ireland's Alcatraz" - a former prison island in Cork Harbour.  This was achieved through a unique and innovative interpretative offer designed to attract a substantial uplift in foreign and local visitors by way of its diversity, quality, accuracy and authenticity.  JANVS | VIDAR was the Lead Interpretative Consultant for the Project and acted as Project Manager for the entire research, design and fit-out works.  The project was the winner of Europe's Leading Tourist Attraction at the World Travel Awards 2017 and the Best World Attraction at the International Travel and Tourism Awards 2019.

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