Richmond Barracks

Historian-in-Residence for Children

In September 2020, Dervilia Roche was announced as Dublin’s first Historian-in-Residence for Children, a role that involves bringing history and Dublin to life with children, planting the seeds for a lifelong connection to history.

Initially a one-year residency, it was extended to September 2022. Based in Richmond Barracks, Inchicore, is part of the Dublin City Council Culture Company Creative Residencies programme and is in partnership with Dublin City Libraries.

Working with children aged 9 – 12, the project seeks to provide space, opportunity and resources to help them uncover the stories of our city and its people, bringing the past to life by finding new and creative ways to engage and connect through history.

The residency aims to empower children in their own personal journey of discovery through stories and history by:

What has Dervilia been working on?

Since her appointment as Historian-in-Residence for Children, Dervilia has engaged over 1600 children through workshops and activities. To date, she has delivered over 50 interactive sessions to school groups across Dublin city.
She has participated in the Dublin Festival of History and the Children’s Book Festival, and hosted a number of history-themed summer camps for children.
Dervilia runs regular in-person and online public workshops, collaborating with writers, illustrators, artists, and other historians.

She hosts regular workshops for families, covering topics ranging from the history of castles in Dublin to the 1916 Easter Rising. Details of upcoming workshops can be found in the Events section of this website.

Dervilia has teamed up with illustrator John Farrelly of Deadly Irish History to create the ‘Hidden Histories Hunt’, a self-guided 3km treasure hunt for children in Dublin City, teaching them about the city's buildings, bridges, history and little-known facts. The treasure hunt is widely available in libraries across Dublin, or you can download it here:

Dervilia also facilitates a monthly children’s history book club and recently led a video project inviting children to explore their local history.

Get Involved

If you know any budding young historians or would simply like to know more about experimenting, learning and sharing through history with the Historian-in-Residence for Children, you can get in touch with Dervilia at

You can see a list of upcoming events at Richmond Barracks here and make sure to sign up to the Richmond Barracks newsletter to stay up to date with news about the residency.

About Creative Residencies

Creative Residencies is a Dublin City Council Culture Company programme which creates partnerships to try out ideas, test new approaches and add to the city’s cultural vibrancy. We encourage creative and cultural experts in partnership with organisations, to think bigger and expand horizons, informed by the city’s people and places.

The inaugural Creative Residency in partnership with The Honorable Society of King’s Inns commenced on 1 September 2019 with visual artist Jesse Jones supported to develop work exploring the theme of art and law, and the creation of a new artwork for King’s Inns.

About Dervilia Roche

Dervilia Roche has been working in heritage and public history for over fourteen years. After obtaining a BA in History of Art and Architecture and Music from Trinity College Dublin, she then received an MSc in Tourism Management from Dublin Institute of Technology, during which she undertook, and later published, research on how children engage with heritage sites.

She has worked at Dublin Castle, the National Museum of Ireland, and the Battle of the Boyne Visitor Centre, in various visitor engagement roles, including tour guiding and developing education programmes. She has particularly focused on creating tours, workshops and resources for children. She has also worked on the creation of educational content for history and geography classroom resources, and in various heritage services in the UK.

She is passionate about the history and heritage of Dublin, and an avid believer that local history should be accessible and engaging to all ages. She is particularly interested in place-based learning, using buildings and landscapes to tell the stories of the past.