Over 16,000 Industrial heritage features have been identified in Northern Ireland.

This information is contained in the Industrial Heritage Record which can be accessed in the Monuments and Buildings Record.

You can also see the location of these sites in the Historic Environment Map Viewer.

The Record was compiled from a survey of historic maps and most entries have limited information. However many buildings have been recorded as part of the Department’s survey of historic buildings and further information may be available on the Northern Ireland Buildings Database.

Also accessible in the MBR is the extensive McCutcheon Industrial Heritage collection, which is held on loan from the Public Record Office. This collection consists of over 27,000 black and white photographs and a colour slide collection taken by Prof. W. A. McCutcheon during his comprehensive industrial heritage survey of Northern Ireland in the 1960s, as well as his associated notes and papers. This work involved detailed inspections, assessments and documentation of much of the material remains of 18th and 19th century industry and communications existing in the province at that time and culminated in the publication of 'The Industrial Archaeology of Northern Ireland' in 1980.

Protecting our industrial heritage

We protect our industrial heritage through both legislation and policy, with the most appropriate method being identified on an individual site basis. Carrickfergus Gasworks is one of a small number of industrial heritage sites in State Care. A number of structures have been Scheduled for protection under the Historic Monuments and Archaeological Objects (NI) Order 1995, such as Newry Canal, the White Spots lead mines at Conlig, County Down and the 'Samson and Goliath' cranes at Harland and Wolff shipyard. Others have been Listed for protection under the Planning (NI) Act 2011, such as the historic mill complex at Sion Mills and the Gasworks, Ormeau Road, Belfast.

Conserving our industrial heritage

We have been involved in a number of schemes to conserve our industrial heritage sites such as Ballycopeland Windmill, County Down, this is a rare example of a working windmill. We have provided extensive advice to developers, local government, heritage bodies and community groups on the management and conservation of industrial heritage sites and how to incorporate them into modern development schemes. Some of the most exciting projects currently involve the conservation of canal features, such as locks and bridges. Canal towpaths are a much used public recreational facility. 

Structure and contacts

View the Historic Environment Division structure and contacts

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