We’re open Monday to Friday from 10am-4:30pm and EVERY Saturday from 12pm-4pm. Free admission, no booking required. Please note: The NIWM will be closed from 12:00pm - 2:30pm on Thursday 13 June 2024 for our AGM.

We are actively collecting stories about Northern Ireland during the Second World War.

We are actively collecting stories about Northern Ireland during the Second World War.


Do you have memories of the Second World War?

If you or someone you know would like to share their memories of Northern Ireland during the Second World War, please contact our Research Officer Michael by telephoning 075 8863 4847 or emailing projects@niwarmemorial.org for more information.

Your memories are incredibly important to us and will be added to our museum collection.

Over one hundred interviews have been recorded so far, and are freely available to researchers, students, and members of the public interested in hearing first-hand accounts of life in Northern Ireland during the Second World War. Listen to some below:


Thomas Jack Murphy
In this clip, Thomas Jack Murphy (b. 1926) discusses how he came to join the Home Guard near Downpatrick, Co. Down as well as his training.
Jean Blair
In this clip, Jean Blair (b. 1920) discusses her wartime work in the NAAFI canteen at Ballykinlar Army Camp, her impressions of the British & American soldiers and a memorable visit from the then Princess Elizabeth.
Fergus McIlroy
In this clip, Fergus McIlroy (b. 1926) discusses his work on the buses from Belfast to Kilkeel, Co. Down and how it was affected by the Second World War.
Elizabeth Jean McIlroy
In this clip, Elizabeth Jean McIlroy (b. 1920) discusses how her dreams of becoming a teacher were stopped by the outbreak of war - leading her to joining the Ministry of Food, issuing ration books to locals in Downpatrick and later managing evacuees of the Belfast Blitz.
Betty Cowan
In this clip, Betty Cowan (b. 1922) an ARP Warden for Drumbo discusses her experience of witnessing the Belfast Blitz. She also talks about the general apathy towards air raid warnings, giving a personal example of when she spent an Air Raid in the Curzon Cinema on the Ormeau Road!
Danny Cunningham
In this clip, Danny Cunningham (b. 1928) discusses learning about the outbreak of war as well as his work in the fishing industry in Greencastle, Co. Down, as well as the prolific wartime smuggling of Irish Whiskey!
Margaret Williamson
In this clip, Margaret Williamson (b.1928) discusses her experiences of the Belfast Blitz and her evacuation to the Slieve Donard Hotel in Newcastle, Co. Down.
Tommy Murray
In this clip, Tommy discusses wartime smuggling and tells a memorable story of his father, who lost a leg during the First World War and was able to use his prosthesis to smuggle butter from 'Down South'.
Tommy Murray (Clip 2)
In this clip, Tommy talks about his walk during the war in Shorts & Harland building planes; mainly Sunderland Flying Boats, one such plane went on to be used in the evacuation of King Haakon of Norway following the German invasion.

Oral History Collection


Our Research Officer can also provide FREE talks based on the museum's growing Oral History collection.

Talks can be tailored to explore different wartime topics, locations, or themes specific to your group or society's area of interest.

Contact us for more information or to book

Find out more

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