Irish pop star Niall Horan of One Direction has enjoyed a meteoric rise to fame since appearing on the X-Factor in 2010.
In just three years, the band have become one of the hottest properties in music, having sold more than19 million singles and 10 million albums worldwide.
Now Horan’s achievements are to be recognised in his home town of Mullingar. Local councillors want to open a museum chronicling his career. They believe a museum about Horan and other local celebrities would help attract tourists.
Mullingar councillor Aidan Davitt said that Horan and his family supported the idea of a museum.
“Niall would be the star of the show as our most famous son. We would love to get some of his items to display there for fans, as well as interactive footage of his performances around the town.”
Officials say they got the idea after seeing how many young fans have been visiting Mullingar as a kind of pilgrimage to see where Horan lived and grew up.
Councillor Davitt , commenting in the Sun newspaper, said he was pleased and impressed that Horan often takes the opportunity to promote his home town around the world
“Fans come here every day looking for Niall’s house – they also go to Tesco looking for his dad Bobby – so it would be great to have somewhere for them to go.”
Horan’s brother Greg told the Irish Mirror: “It would be fantastic if they do actually set up the Niall Horan museum. It would be great for the town. Niall has always been a big Mullingar man. He’s never forgotten where he comes from – so he will definitely support it. It really would be good.”
Local officials have already identified a suitable building and if all goes to plan, the museum could open next summer.
Horan’s rapid rise to stardom and recognition is in stark contrast to the level of civic attention paid to some other Irish singers. Van Morrison had to wait until he was 68 before he was given the freedom on his native Belfast earlier this year.
There is no civic monument to the late Luke Kelly in Dublin. The council there considered erecting a statue but the project never got off the ground due to lack of funds.