The North West Atlantic Region shares a unique asset, our maritime heritage. For hundreds of years our coastlines have been the setting for pivotal wars that changed the shape of Europe and the Wider World.
From the Spanish Armada to the Battle of Trafalgar to the Battle of the Atlantic, the remnants of these world-changing conflicts lie beneath the waves of our shorelines. In particular, the north-west coast of Ireland has some of the most numerous shipwrecks in one area across the world, from U-boats to Ocean Liners to Galleons from the Spanish Armada, the waters offer dangerous but near perfect visual conditions to view these shipwrecks for experienced divers.
In addition, our combined shorelines have witnessed momentous migration events, from the sailing of the Mayflower from Plymouth to the Age of Exploration to the Irish Emigration of the 18th and 19th centuries, millions of people have left for the new world.
The TIDE overall objective is to share these unique heritage assets in order to develop new types of historical maritime tourist packages and cultural attractions for the Atlantic by sharing cultural assets across regions, supported by new technologies and transnational collaboration tools. The cultural assets could be in museums, shipwreck sites, or archives related to battles or migrating passengers and their stories, etc.
The main features of the new attractions are: They present cultural content from other regions, as well as their own; Connect visitor centres to real underwater sites that contain shipwrecks or submarines; Create a richer visitor experience by introducing new technologies such as Virtual Reality; Focus on historical niches that have left a cultural footprint across Atlantic regions, e.g., Napoleonic; Are based in existing cultural attraction building.
The expected impact is to increase the number of visits to supported cultural sites by 500 per annum and result in 30% of Atlantic regions using the project's outputs to improve their policies for exploiting cultural assets for economic development;
It will facilitate local communities cooperate to develop new niche tourism services, create new local jobs, fix and attract people, create synergies between existing tourism providers and improve the economic and social wellbeing of the project regions.
The project tools and pilots developed will be used by other groups of Atlantic regions to amplify and multiply the above impact across the Atlantic Area.