Published Thursday, 31 July 2014
Last year, Ards Borough Council said it was considering closing the Portaferry attraction saying costs were too much for them.
A private investor had been found to take on Exploris, however, difficulty over staff pensions prevented the sale from going through.
The news prompted public outcry and a campaign to save the marine centre began.
On Thursday, a statement from SDLP minister Durkan said the Northern Ireland Executive has agreed to provide the funding required to keep Exploris open and update its facilities.
He continued: "It is excellent news for all the supporters of Exploris, both near and far, and particularly for the people of Portaferry.
"They have fought a valiant campaign, highlighting not just the regional importance of Exploris, but have also argued that it is vital to the social and economic wellbeing of the town.
"I have already committed funding from DOE to ensure the local seal sanctuary stays open. That was a key building block for saving Exploris. Now that I have secured Executive funding, I trust that Ards Borough Council will be able to reverse its recent decision to close this wonderful facility."
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