Northern Ireland

Timeline: Maze prison site development

Aerial view of former Maze prison site
Image caption The Maze prison held some of NI's most notorious killers from 1971 to 200

A bitter political row over a planned peace centre at the former site of the Maze prison has led to the withdrawal of £18m in EU funding for the controversial project. BBC News looks back at the tangled tale of the Maze.

1971 - The government begins to house paramilitary prisoners at HMP Maze, a purpose-built jail constructed on the disused Long Kesh RAF base, south-west of Belfast. Over the next 29 years, it held some of the most notorious paramilitary killers in Northern Ireland.

1981 - Ten republican inmates, including Bobby Sands, die during an IRA hunger strike over a dispute about political prisoner status.

1983 - Thirty-eight republican prisoners break out of the Maze in the biggest prison escape in British history. Several prison officers are stabbed and one later dies from a heart attack.

1997 - Loyalist Volunteer Force (LVF) leader Billy Wright is shot dead inside the Maze by republican prisoners

1998 - The phased early release of paramilitary prisoners begins at the Maze on 11 September, under the terms of the Good Friday Agreement.

2000 - More than 1,000 prisoner officers leave their jobs in preparation for the closure of the Maze as a working jail on 30 September. The last four inmates are transferred to another jail.

2005 - Direct rule minister Ian Pearson approves a plan to build a new £55m sports stadium on the 360-acre former prison site, saying it is the only viable location for the project.

2006 - Demolition work begins to transform 360-acre former jail site into a proposed 42,000 seat multi-sports arena and "centre for conflict transformation". It is envisaged that soccer, rugby and Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) sports will be played at the new development.

2009 - Sports Minister Gregory Campbell rules out the plan for a multi-sports stadium which had divided political and sporting opinion, opting instead to explore alternatives with the soccer, rugby and GAA authorities.

2010 - NI first and deputy first ministers, Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness, announce an agreement has been reached on building a peace and conflict resolution facility at the Maze site. It will also host the Royal Ulster Agricultural Society's annual show

2012 - (2 February) European funding of £18m is approved for building the contentious conflict resolution centre, as part of a £300m redevelopment of the former prison estate.

2012 - (24 August) - It is revealed that Daniel Libeskind, one of the world's leading architects, is to join the design team for the planned peace centre.

2013 (18 April) - Planning permission for the peace centre on the site of the former prison is granted.

2013 - (13 June) - The Orange Order calls on unionist politicians to halt the peace centre plan, objecting to its location on the former prison site.

2013 - (15 August) Peter Robinson calls a halt to the peace centre plan. In a letter to DUP members, he said it would be wrong to proceed without a consensus about how it will operate.

2013 - (4 October) A European Union funding programme withdraws its offer of £18m in financial support for the Maze peace centre, after talks with the Office of the First and Deputy First Minister.

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