The Appointment of the Master Mason
In 1614, Peter Benson, a tiler and bricklayer from London, was awarded the contract to build the Derry Walls. Peter Benson secured a grant of 1000 acres in Donegal, was mayor of Derry in 1639 and died in 1642.
Derry Walls Day 2014 took place on Saturday 13th September when the public were invited to take part in the Mason’s Treasure Hunt, helping the chief mason recover his missing contract, at the same time as exploring secret spaces and heritage buildings around the City Walls. Characters from Derry’s history were located in Guildhall Square and around the Walls including Peter Benson, the chief mason for the Derry Walls. There was a pop-museum in Guildhall Square to see demonstrations of stone-carving and 17th C weapons. The Playhouse’s History Detective School empowered children (and adults) with special knowledge to get clues for the Mason’s Treasure Hunt.