The Cultural Afterlife of Ruins is a new online creative writing programme focusing on the afterlife of the ruins that surround us. The programme, led by accomplished author and cartographer Garrett Carr, explores how the remanence of our past contribute to our future. The programme will explore our links to history, our connections to places and examines what this tells us about our society. 

Participants will be invited to take a look at the buildings which no longer serve their original purpose and examine the importance they hold in memory and contemporary society. The programme is under the umbrella of ‘Making the Future’ a major new cultural heritage project from the Nerve Centre, National Museums NI, the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland and the Linen Hall Library and is supported by the European Union’s PEACE IV programme. 

The programme, which is free to all participants will run from the 22nd Feb – 24th March 2021 and features a number of lectures, workshops, and feedback sessions. Garrett Carr, author of The Rule of the Land: Walking Ireland’s Border, will lead a session that will examine the way writers have explored and discussed ruins and relics. Garrett will also be running a workshop that will develop creative writing skills giving the participant the opportunity to create their own piece of non-fiction. There will also be a feedback session on the work created. 

Garrett will be joined by Rebecca Milligan, from Queen’s University’s School of Natural and Built Environment. Rebecca will deliver a lecture inspiring participant to consider their surroundings during the creative writing process. Rebecca holds a BSc. in Archaeology and Paleoecology from Queen’s University Belfast, a MSc. in Forensic Osteology from Bournemouth University and a MSc. (Distinction) in Heritage Science from Queen’s University Belfast. She is currently completing a PhD on “Deep Mapping” at Queen’s University Belfast.

The writing course will be online and delivered through Zoom and Slack with support from the team at Making the Future for those that require it. Although the course is free and open to anyone based in Northern Ireland or border counties, unfortunately you cannot attend the course if you have participated in any other of the ‘Making the Future’ events due to funding stipulations. 

You can register for ‘The Cultural Afterlife of Ruins’ at 

For more details, or to discuss any disability access requirements, please contact Shauna McGowan at