Northern Ireland news

Council to mark Amelia Earhart trans-Atlantic flight anniversary

Amelia Earhart spent time talking to local people and signing autographs after landing her plane at Gallagher's Field on the northern outskirts of Derry in May 1932

DERRY and Strabane council has announced plans to mark next year's 90th anniversary of Amelia Earhart's first trans-Atlantic solo flight with a series of exhibitions, lectures and other events.

Earhart made history when she became the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic, landing at 'Gallagher's Field' in Derry's Ballyarnett area on May 21 1932.

After breaking many world records as an aviator, Earhart went missing with her navigator, Fred Noonan, while attempting to circumnavigate the world in 1937.

Two years later, they were officially declared dead.

While the story of her flight is already a feature of the Tower Museum in Derry, the council is also putting the final touches to a programme of events to mark next year's anniversary.

Aeidin McCarter, head of culture with the council, said the programme would include a temporary exhibition of objects and archives as well as lectures linked to women in aviation.

A series of online and on-site educational workshops for schools and families will also be organised.

"In 2021, a bespoke Amelia Earhart signature tourism story was set up in the new Visit Derry Tourist Office at Waterloo Place," she said.

"This positioning firmly puts the story of Amelia Earhart and her connections to the city right at the heart of our tourism and heritage offer."

She added that officials were working with a number of groups to co-ordinate a programme of activities under a single marketing plan.

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