All Aboard! For the Launch of the Children’s Interpretative Centre at the Casino, Malahide

Padraig Conlon 09 May 2023
Pictured are train driver Debbie Webster and Summer O’Flynn. St. Oliver Plunkett’s School Malahide. Picture Jason Clarke

A new Children’s Interpretative Centre which will give visitors a chance to see what it is like to drive a life-sized Iarnród Éireann train engine carriage has been launched today at the Casino Model Railway Museum in Malahide.

Housed in the beautifully restored Casino ‘Cottage Orné’ in the heart of Malahide Village this exciting new project has been delivered thanks to a collaboration between Fingal County Council, Iarnród Éireann and Alstom.

The new visitor attraction maximizes technology, with layered sights and sounds and digital screens on the windows on the carriage to help add to the experience.

All these elements deliver educational and experiential content with energy and momentum.

As each new subject is introduced you dramatically exit dark tunnels of fast-moving dappled light.

To enhance the interactive nature of the experience, tactile and interactive elements have been incorporated allowing guests to engage with the content and experience as the journey unfolds.

The concept is to encourage children’s natural curiosity through interactive elements as their train journey unfolds, enabling them to engage, connect and be taken on an immersive rail journey.

The Museum aims to appeal to a younger audience while still engaging with all demographics.

The start and end point of your rail journey is dictated by you the user, as you board and disembark from the train.

It is a self-guided experience, delivered through a continuous loop, and you can hop on or off at any time.

The exhibit is aimed at children between five and seven years of age and has been designed with the neurodiverse in mind.

Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Howard Mahony said: “The Casino building is such a special heritage landmark in Malahide.

“The introduction of an Interpretative Centre will be a valuable addition to the museum experience, delivering a truly immersive experience that all visitors will enjoy.

“I know this is going to be a positive educational destination moving forward, and judging from the children’s reaction from the local schools here today it is also great fun!”.

Chief Executive of Fingal County Council, AnnMarie Farrelly   commented, “The Casino Cottage is an important part of Fingal’s heritage portfolio, and we are delighted to have worked in close collaboration with Iarnrod Eireann and Alstom, on the development of a new Children’s Interpretative Centre here at the Casino Model Railway Museum.

“This project will further enhance an already excellent tourist offering”.

Speaking at the launch Barry Kenny, Corporate Communications Manager with Iarnród Éireann commented: “Trains are all about adventure and seeing new places.

“We hope that the many children that come to visit this exhibit will experience what it feels like to drive a train and go on an exciting journey.

“Many of them may already travel by train and who knows maybe they will go on to be our future employees”.

Managing Director of Alstom Ireland Piers Wood said: “Alstom is committed to supporting Ireland’s determined journey towards achieving net zero emissions.

“Helping children develop their knowledge of the railway and its benefits to the environment, is an important part of that journey.

“We are pleased to be supporting Fingal County Council and Iarnród Éireann with this impressive educational exhibit.”

The Museum also offers a close-up look at the exquisite craftsmanship of Cyril Fry’s hand-crafted models.

All hand-painted and considered the most elaborate in Ireland.

There is also an interactive display, where you can watch the modern working models and learn about the Irish Railway & Tramway System.

Through touch screens you can get more context on individual trains and Irish Rail history.

The Cyril Fry corner is an award-winning area that is a representation of his workshop and demonstrates his attention to detail.

Now a thriving rail museum receiving visitors from home and abroad, the Casino Model Railway Museum is an integral heritage attraction to the village and the broader region of Fingal, it is located next to Malahide Train Station providing easy access for families to travel there by train.


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