Belfast
   HOME

TheInfoList



OR:

Belfast ( , ; from ga, Béal Feirste , meaning 'mouth of the sand-bank ford') is the capital and largest city of
Northern Ireland Northern Ireland ( ga, Tuaisceart Éireann ; sco, label=Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots, Norlin Airlann) is a part of the United Kingdom, situated in the north-east of the island of Ireland, that is #Descriptions, variously described as ...

Northern Ireland
, standing on the banks of the River Lagan on the east coast. It is the 12th-largest city in the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a country in Europe, off the north-western coast of the European mainland, continental mainland. It comprises England, Scotlan ...

United Kingdom
and the second-largest in
Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots: ) is an island in the Atlantic Ocean, North Atlantic Ocean, in Northwestern Europe, north-western Europe. It is separated from Great Britain to its east by the North Channel (Grea ...

Ireland
. It had a population of 345,418 . By the early 19th century, Belfast was a major
port A port is a maritime law, maritime facility comprising one or more Wharf, wharves or loading areas, where ships load and discharge Affreightment, cargo and passengers. Although usually situated on a sea coast or estuary, ports can a ...

port
. It played an important role in the
Industrial Revolution The Industrial Revolution was the transition to new manufacturing processes in Great Britain, continental Europe, and the United States, that occurred during the period from around 1760 to about 1820–1840. This transition included going fr ...
in Ireland, briefly becoming the biggest
linen
linen
-producer in the world, earning it the nickname " Linenopolis". By the time it was granted
city status
city status
in 1888, it was a major centre of Irish linen production,
tobacco
tobacco
-processing and rope-making. Shipbuilding was also a key industry; the Harland and Wolff shipyard, which built the , was the world's largest shipyard.
Industrialisation
Industrialisation
, and the resulting inward migration, made Belfast one of Ireland's biggest cities. Following the partition of Ireland in 1921, Belfast became the seat of government for Northern Ireland. There was major communal violence in the city during partition. Belfast saw further severe violence and numerous bombings during the thirty years of the Troubles, c.1969–1998, and parts of the city remain segregated between Catholics and
Protestants Protestantism is a Christian denomination, branch of Christianity that follows the theological tenets of the Reformation, Protestant Reformation, a movement that began seeking to reform the Catholic Church from within in the 16th century agai ...
. Belfast is still a port with commercial and industrial docks, including the Harland and Wolff shipyard, dominating the Belfast Lough shoreline. It also has a major aerospace industry. It is served by two airports: George Best Belfast City Airport, from the city centre, and Belfast International Airport west of the city. The Globalization and World Cities Research Network (GaWC) listed Belfast as a Gamma + global city in 2020.


Name

The name Belfast derives from the Irish , later spelt (). The word means "mouth" or "river-mouth," while is the genitive singular of and refers to a sandbar or tidal ford across a river's mouth. The name therefore translates literally as "(river) mouth of the sandbar" or "(river) mouth of the ford". The sandbar formed at the confluence (at present-day Donegall Quay) of two rivers: the Lagan, which flows into Belfast Lough, and the Farset, a tributary of the Lagan. "Mouth of the Farset" might be an alternative interpretation. This area became the hub around which the original settlement developed. The compilers of Ulster-Scots use various transcriptions of local pronunciations of "Belfast" (with which they sometimes are also content) including ''Bilfawst'', ''Bilfaust'' or ''Baelfawst.''


History

The county borough of Belfast was created when it was granted city status by
Queen Victoria Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria; 24 May 1819 – 22 January 1901) was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until Death and state funeral of Queen Victoria, her death in 1901. Her reign of 63 years and 21 ...

Queen Victoria
in 1888, and the city continues to straddle County Antrim on the left bank of the Lagan and on the right.


Early settlements

The site of Belfast has been occupied since the
Bronze Age The Bronze Age is a historic period, lasting approximately from 3300 BC to 1200 BC, characterized by the use of bronze Bronze is an alloy consisting primarily of copper, commonly with about 12–12.5% tin and often with the addition of ...
. The Giant's Ring, a 5,000-year-old henge, is located near the city, and the remains of
Iron Age The Iron Age is the final epoch of the three-age division of the prehistory and protohistory of humanity. It was preceded by the Stone Age (Paleolithic, Mesolithic, Neolithic) and the Bronze Age (Chalcolithic). The concept has been mostly appl ...
hill forts can still be seen in the surrounding hills. Belfast remained a small settlement of little importance during the
Middle Ages In the history of Europe, the Middle Ages or medieval period lasted approximately from the late 5th to the late 15th centuries, similar to the Post-classical, post-classical period of World history (field), global history. It began with t ...
. The
Normans The Normans (Norman language, Norman: ''Normaunds''; french: Normands; la, Nortmanni/Normanni) were a population arising in the medieval Duchy of Normandy from the intermingling between Norsemen, Norse Viking settlers and indigenous West Fran ...
may have built a
castle A castle is a type of fortified structure built during the Middle Ages In the history of Europe, the Middle Ages or medieval period lasted approximately from the late 5th to the late 15th centuries, similar to the Post-classical, ...

castle
on a site now bounded by Donegall Place, Castle Place, Cornmarket and Castle Lane in the late twelfth century or early thirteenth century, in what is now Belfast City Centre.Raymond Gillespie and Stephen A. Royle, ''Irish Historic Towns Atlas Number 12: Belfast - Part I, to 1840'', p. 1. ,
Dublin Dublin (; , or ) is the capital and largest city of Republic of Ireland, Ireland. On a bay at the mouth of the River Liffey, it is in the Provinces of Ireland, province of Leinster, bordered on the south by the Dublin Mountains, a part of th ...

Dublin
, 2003.
However, this original '' was much smaller and of far less strategic importance than nearby Carrickfergus Castle, which was constructed at
Carrickfergus Carrickfergus ( , meaning "Fergus Mór mac Eirc, Fergus' rock") is a large town in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It sits on the north shore of Belfast Lough, from Belfast. The town had a population of 27,998 at the United Kingdom Census 2 ...
and was probably built in the late 1170s. As lords of Clandeboye, the
O'Neill dynasty The O'Neill dynasty (irish language, Irish: ''Ó Néill'') are a lineage of Irish people, Irish Gaels, Gaelic origin, that held prominent positions and titles in Ireland and elsewhere. As kings of Cenél nEógain, they were historically the m ...
were the local Irish power. In 1616, after the
Nine Years' War The Nine Years' War (1688–1697), often called the War of the Grand Alliance or the War of the League of Augsburg, was a conflict between Kingdom of France, France and a European coalition which mainly included the Holy Roman Empire (led by t ...
, the last of the local line, Conn O'Neill (remembered in Connswater River), was forced to sell their remaining stronghold, the Grey Castle or Castle Reagh (''An Caisleán Riabhach'' in Irish) in the hills to the east of Belfast, together with surrounding lands, to English and Scottish adventurers.


Plantation town

With the undertaking of
Plantation A plantation is an agricultural estate, generally centered on a plantation house, meant for farming that specializes in cash crops, usually mainly planted with a single crop, with perhaps ancillary areas for vegetables for eating and so on. The ...
, Belfast was established as a town in 1613 by
Sir Arthur Chichester Arthur Chichester, 1st Baron Chichester (May 1563 – 19 February 1625; known between 1596 and 1613 as Sir Arthur Chichester), of Carrickfergus in Ireland, was an English administrator and soldier who served as Lord Deputy of Ireland from 160 ...
. Chichester also had rebuilt at this time. The mainly English and Manx settlers took Anglican communion at Corporation Church on the quay-side end of High Street. But it was with Scottish Presbyterians that the town was to grow as an industrial port. Together with French
Huguenot The Huguenots ( , also , ) were a Religious denomination, religious group of French people, French Protestants who held to the Reformed, or Calvinist, tradition of Protestantism. The term, which may be derived from the name of a Swiss politica ...
refugees, they introduced the production of , an industry that carried Belfast trade to the Americas. Reluctant to let valuable crop go to seed,
flax Flax, also known as common flax or linseed, is a flowering plant, ''Linum usitatissimum'', in the family Linaceae. It is cultivated as a food and fiber crop in regions of the world with temperate climates. Textiles made from flax are known in W ...
growers and linen merchants benefited from a three-way exchange. Fortunes were made carrying rough linen clothing and salted provisions to the slave plantations of the West Indies; sugar and rum to Baltimore and New York; and for the return to Belfast of flaxseed from the colonies where the relative scarcity of labour made unprofitable the processing of the flax into linen fibre. Profits from the trade financed improvements in the town's commercial infrastructure, including the Lagan Canal, new docks and quays, and the construction of the White Linen Hall which together attracted to Belfast the linen trade that had formerly gone through
Dublin Dublin (; , or ) is the capital and largest city of Republic of Ireland, Ireland. On a bay at the mouth of the River Liffey, it is in the Provinces of Ireland, province of Leinster, bordered on the south by the Dublin Mountains, a part of th ...

Dublin
. Public outrage, however, defeated the proposal of the greatest of the merchant houses, Cunningham and Greg, to commission ships for the
Middle Passage The Middle Passage was the stage of the Atlantic slave trade The Atlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, or Euro-American slave trade involved the transportation by slave traders of enslaved African people, mainly to the Americas ...
. As "Dissenters" from the
established Church A state religion (also called religious state or official religion) is a religion or creed officially endorsed by a sovereign state. A state with an official religion (also known as confessional state), while not secular state, secular, is not n ...
, Presbyterians were conscious of sharing, if only in part, the
disabilities Disability is the experience of any condition that makes it more difficult for a person to do certain activities or have equitable access within a given society. Disabilities may be Cognitive disability, cognitive, Developmental disability, dev ...
of Ireland's dispossessed
Roman Catholic Roman or Romans most often refers to: *Rome , established_title = Founded , established_date = 753 BC , founder = King Romulus (Romulus and Remus, legendary) , image_map = Map of comune of Rome (metropolitan c ...
majority; and of being denied representation in the Irish Parliament. Belfast's two MPs remained nominees of the Chichesters ( Marquesses of Donegall). With their American kinsmen, the region's Presbyterians were to share a growing disaffection from
the Crown The Crown is the state (polity), state in all its aspects within the jurisprudence of the Commonwealth realms and their subdivisions (such as the Crown Dependencies, British Overseas Territories, overseas territories, Provinces and territorie ...
. When early in the
American War of Independence The American Revolutionary War (April 19, 1775 – September 3, 1783), also known as the Revolutionary War or American War of Independence, was a major war of the American Revolution. Widely considered as the war that secured the independence of t ...
, Belfast Lough was raided by the
privateer A privateer is a private person or ship that engages in maritime warfare under a commission of war. Since robbery under arms was a common aspect of seaborne trade, until the early 19th century all merchant ships carried arms. A sovereign or deleg ...
John Paul Jones John Paul Jones (born John Paul; July 6, 1747 July 18, 1792) was a Scottish-American naval captain who was the United States' first well-known naval commander in the American Revolutionary War. He made many friends among U.S political elites ( ...
, the townspeople assembled their own Volunteer militia. Formed ostensibly for defence of the Kingdom, the Volunteers were soon pressing their own protest against "taxation without representation". Further emboldened by the
French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) was a period of radical political and societal change in France France (), officially the French Republic ( ), is a country primarily located in Western Europe. It also comprises of Overseas France, ...
, a more radical element in the town, the
United Irishmen The Society of United Irishmen was a sworn association in the Kingdom of Ireland formed in the wake of the French Revolution to secure "an equal representation of all the people" in a national government. Despairing of constitutional reform, ...
, called for
Catholic emancipation Catholic emancipation or Catholic relief was a process in the kingdoms of Kingdom of Great Britain, Great Britain and Kingdom of Ireland, Ireland, and later the combined United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, United Kingdom in the late 18t ...
and an independent representative government for the country. In hopes of French assistance, in 1798 the Society organised a republican insurrection. The rebel tradesmen and tenant farmers were defeated north of the town at the Battle of Antrim and to the south at the Battle of Ballynahinch. Among surviving elements of the early pre-Victorian town are the Belfast Entries, 17th-century alleyways off High Street, including, in Winecellar's Entry, White's Tavern (rebuilt 1790); the First Presbyterian (Non-Subscribing) Church (1781–83) in Rosemary Street (whose members led the abolitionist charge against Greg and Cunningham); St George's Church of Ireland (1816) on the High Street site of the old Corporation Church; and the oldest public building in Belfast, Clifton House (1771–74), the Belfast Charitable Society
poorhouse A poorhouse or workhouse is a government-run (usually by a county or municipality) facility to support and provide housing for the dependent or needy. Workhouses In England, Wales and Ireland (but not in Scotland), ‘workhouse’ has been the ...
on North Queen Street.


Industrial expansion

Rapid industrial growth in the nineteenth century drew in landless Catholics from outlying rural and western districts, most settling to the west of the town. The plentiful supply of cheap labour helped attract English and Scottish capital to Belfast, but it was also a cause of insecurity. Protestant workers who organised to secure their access to jobs and housing gave a new lease of life in the town to the once largely rural
Orange Order The Loyal Orange Institution, commonly known as the Orange Order, is an international Protestant fraternal order based in Northern Ireland and primarily associated with Ulster Protestants, particularly those of Ulster Scots people, Ulster Sco ...
. Sectarian tensions were heightened by movements to repeal the Acts of Union (which followed the 1798 rebellion) and to restore a Parliament in
Dublin Dublin (; , or ) is the capital and largest city of Republic of Ireland, Ireland. On a bay at the mouth of the River Liffey, it is in the Provinces of Ireland, province of Leinster, bordered on the south by the Dublin Mountains, a part of th ...

Dublin
. Given the progressive enlargement of the British electoral franchise, this would have had an overwhelming Catholic majority and, it was widely believed, interests inimical to the Protestant and industrial north. In 1864 and 1886 the issue had helped trigger deadly sectarian riots. Sectarian tension was not in itself unique to Belfast: it was shared with Liverpool and Glasgow, cities that following the Great Famine had also experienced large-scale Irish Catholic immigration. But also common to this "industrial triangle" were traditions of labour militancy. In 1919, workers in all three cities struck for a ten-hour reduction in the working week. In Belfast—notwithstanding the political friction caused by Sinn Féin's electoral triumph in the south—this involved some 60,000 workers, Protestant and Catholic, in a four-week walk-out. In a demonstration of their resolve not to submit to a Dublin parliament, in 1912
Belfast City Hall Belfast City Hall ( ga, Halla na Cathrach Bhéal Feirste; Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster-Scots: ''Bilfawst Citie Haw'') is the civic building of Belfast City Council located in Donegall Square, Belfast, Northern Ireland. It faces North and effect ...
unionists presented the Ulster Covenant, which, with an associated Declaration for women, was to accumulate over 470,000 signatures. This was followed by the drilling and eventual arming of a 100,000-strong
Ulster Volunteer Force The Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) is an Ulster loyalism, Ulster loyalist paramilitary group. Formed in 1965, it first emerged in 1966. Its first leader was Gusty Spence, a former British Army soldier from Northern Ireland. The group undertook T ...
. The crisis was abated by the onset of the
Great War World War I (28 July 1914 11 November 1918), often abbreviated as WWI, was List of wars and anthropogenic disasters by death toll, one of the deadliest global conflicts in history. Belligerents included much of Europe, the Russian Empire, ...
, the sacrifices of the UVF in which continue to be commemorated in the city ( Somme Day) by unionist and loyalist organisations.


Northern capital

In 1921, as the greater part of Ireland seceded as the
Irish Free State The Irish Free State ( ga, Saorstát Éireann, , ; 6 December 192229 December 1937) was a State (polity), state established in December 1922 under the Anglo-Irish Treaty of December 1921. The treaty ended the three-year Irish War of Independ ...
, Belfast became the capital of the six counties remaining as
Northern Ireland Northern Ireland ( ga, Tuaisceart Éireann ; sco, label=Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots, Norlin Airlann) is a part of the United Kingdom, situated in the north-east of the island of Ireland, that is #Descriptions, variously described as ...

Northern Ireland
in the United Kingdom. In 1932, the devolved parliament for the region was housed in new buildings at Stormont on the eastern edge of the city. In 1920–21, as the island of Ireland was partitioned, up to 500 people were killed in disturbances in Belfast, the bloodiest period of strife in the city until the Troubles of the late 1960s onwards. This period of
communal violence Communal violence is a form of violence that is perpetrated across ethnic An ethnic group or an ethnicity is a grouping of people who identity (social science), identify with each other on the basis of shared attributes that distinguish them ...
(1920–22) was commonly referred to as the Belfast Pogrom.


Second World War

Belfast was heavily bombed during
World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a world war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. It involved the World War II by country, vast majority of the world's countries—including all of the great power ...
. Initial raids were a surprise as the city was believed to be outside of the range of German bomber planes. In one raid, in 1941, German bombers killed around one thousand people and left tens of thousands homeless. Apart from London, this was the greatest loss of life in a night raid during the Blitz. In the spring of 1942, the German
Luftwaffe The ''Luftwaffe'' () was the aerial warfare, aerial-warfare branch of the German ''Wehrmacht'' before and during World War II. German Empire, Germany's military air arms during World War I, the ''Luftstreitkräfte'' of the German Army (Ge ...
appeared twice over Belfast. In addition to the shipyards and the Shorts Brothers aircraft factory, the Belfast Blitz severely damaged or destroyed more than half the city's housing stock, devastated the old town centre around High Street, and killed over a thousand people.


Post-war redevelopment

At the end of World War II, the Unionist Government undertook programmes of "
slum clearance Slum clearance, slum eviction or slum removal is an urban renewal strategy used to transform low income settlements with poor reputation into another type of development or housing. This has long been a strategy for redeveloping urban communities; ...
" (the Blitz had exposed the "uninhabitable" condition of much of the city's housing) which involved decanting populations out of mill and factory, and constructing terraced streets into new peripheral housing estates. Road construction schemes, including the terminus of the M1 and the Westlink severed the streets linking north and west Belfast to the city centre, for example the dockland community of Sailortown. The cost was borne by the British Exchequer. In what the Unionist government understood as its reward for wartime service, London had agreed that parity in taxation between Northern Ireland and Great Britain should be matched by parity in the services delivered. In addition to the public construction, this provided for universal health care, comprehensive social security, and "revolutionised access" to secondary and further education. The new
welfare state A welfare state is a form of government in which the state (or a well-established network of social institutions) protects and promotes the economic and social well-being of its citizens, based upon the principles of equal opportunity Equa ...
contributed, in turn, to rising expectations; in the 1960s, a possible factor in new and growing protest over the Unionist government's record on civil and political rights.


The Troubles

Belfast has been the scene of various episodes of sectarian conflict between its Catholic and Protestant populations. These opposing groups in this conflict are now often termed republican and
loyalist Loyalism, in the United Kingdom, its British Overseas Territories, overseas territories and its British Empire, former colonies, refers to the allegiance to the British crown or the United Kingdom. In North America, the most common usage of ...
respectively, although they are also loosely referred to as '
nationalist Nationalism is an idea and movement that holds that the nation should be congruent with the State (polity), state. As a movement, nationalism tends to promote the interests of a particular nation (as in a in-group and out-group, group of peo ...
' and ' unionist'. The most recent example of this conflict was known as the Troubles – a civil conflict that raged from the late 1960s to 1998. Belfast saw some of the worst of the Troubles in Northern Ireland, particularly in the 1970s, with rival paramilitary groups formed on both sides. Bombing, assassination and street violence formed a backdrop to life throughout the Troubles. In December 1971, 15 people, including two children, were killed when the
Ulster Volunteer Force The Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) is an Ulster loyalism, Ulster loyalist paramilitary group. Formed in 1965, it first emerged in 1966. Its first leader was Gusty Spence, a former British Army soldier from Northern Ireland. The group undertook T ...
(UVF) bombed McGurk's Bar, the greatest loss of life in a single incident in Belfast. Loyalist paramilitaries including the UVF and the
Ulster Defence Association The Ulster Defence Association (UDA) is an Ulster loyalism, Ulster loyalist paramilitary group in Northern Ireland. It was formed in September 1971 as an umbrella group for various loyalist groups and Timeline of Ulster Defence Association act ...
(UDA) said that the killings they carried out were in retaliation for the IRA campaign. Most of their victims were Catholics with no links to the
Provisional IRA The Irish Republican Army (IRA; ), also known as the Provisional Irish Republican Army, and informally as the Provos, was an Irish republicanism, Irish republican paramilitary organisation that sought to end British rule in Northern Ireland, fa ...
. A particularly notorious group, based on the
Shankill Road The Shankill Road () is one of the main roads leading through West Belfast, in Northern Ireland. It runs through the working class, working-class, predominantly Ulster loyalism, loyalist, area known as the Shankill. The road stretches westwards fo ...
in the mid-1970s, became known as the
Shankill Butchers The Shankill Butchers were an Ulster loyalist Ulster loyalism is a strand of Unionism in Ireland, Ulster unionism associated with working class Ulster Protestants in Northern Ireland. Like other unionists, loyalists support the continued ex ...
. The Provisional IRA detonated 22 bombs within the confines of Belfast city centre on 21 July 1972, on what is known as Bloody Friday, killing nine people. The British Army, first deployed on the streets in August 1969, was also responsible for civilian deaths. In the deadliest event, known as the Ballymurphy massacre, between 9 and 11 August 1971 members of the Parachute Regiment killed at least nine civilians. A 2021 coroner's report found that all those killed had been innocent and that the killings were "without justification". During the 1970s and 1980s Belfast was one of the world's most dangerous cities. In all, over 1,600 people were killed in political violence in the city between 1969 and 2001. During the Troubles the Europa Hotel suffered 36 bomb attacks becoming known as "the most bombed hotel in the world".


Peace lines

An enduring physical legacy of the conflict are the extensive "
peace lines The peace lines or peace walls are a series of separation barriers in Northern Ireland that separate predominantly Irish republicanism, republican and Irish nationalism, nationalist Irish Catholics, Catholic neighbourhoods from predomina ...
" (or "peace walls") that continue to separate loyalist from republican districts. Ranging in length from a few hundred metres to over 5 kilometres, the security barriers have increased both in number and in height and number since 1998. They divide communities that account for 14 of the 20 most deprived wards in Northern Ireland. In May 2013, the Northern Ireland Executive committed to the removal of all peace lines by mutual consent. As the target date of 2023 approaches, only a small number have been dismantled.


Governance

Belfast was granted borough status by
James VI and I James VI and I (James Charles Stuart; 19 June 1566 – 27 March 1625) was King of Scotland as James VI from 24 July 1567 and King of England and King of Ireland, Ireland as James I from the Union of the Crowns, union of the Scottish and Eng ...
in 1613 and official
city status City status is a symbolic and legal designation given by a national or subnational government. A municipality may receive city status because it already has the qualities of a city, or because it has some special purpose. Historically, city status ...
by
Queen Victoria Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria; 24 May 1819 – 22 January 1901) was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until Death and state funeral of Queen Victoria, her death in 1901. Her reign of 63 years and 21 ...

Queen Victoria
in 1888. Since 1973 it has been a
local government district The districts of England (also known as local authority districts or local government districts to distinguish from unofficial city districts) are a level of Subdivisions of England, subnational division of England used for the purposes of Loc ...
under local administration by
Belfast City Council Belfast City Council ( ga, Comhairle Cathrach Bhéal Feirste) is the Local government in Northern Ireland, local authority with responsibility for part of the city of Belfast, the capital and largest city of Northern Ireland. The Council serves ...
. Belfast is represented in both the
British House of Commons The House of Commons is the lower house of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Like the upper house, the House of Lords, it meets in the Palace of Westminster in London, England. The House of Commons is an elected body consisting of 650 mem ...
and in the
Northern Ireland Assembly sco-ulster, Norlin Airlan Assemblie , legislature = Seventh Assembly , coa_pic = File:NI_Assembly.svg , coa_res = 250px , house_type = Unicameral Unicameralism (from ''uni''- "one" + Latin ''came ...
. For elections to the
European Parliament The European Parliament (EP) is one of the Legislature, legislative bodies of the European Union and one of its seven Institutions of the European Union, institutions. Together with the Council of the European Union (known as the Council and in ...
, Belfast was within the Northern Ireland constituency.


Local government

Belfast City Council is the local council with responsibility for the city. The city's elected officials are the
Lord Mayor of Belfast The Lord Mayor of Belfast is the leader and chairperson of Belfast City Council, elected annually from and by the City's 60 Councillors#UnitedKingdom, councillors. The Lord Mayor also serves as the representative of the city of Belfast, welcomin ...
, Deputy Lord Mayor and High Sheriff who are elected from among 60
councillors A councillor is an elected representative for a local government council in some countries. Canada Due to the control that the provinces have over their municipal governments, terms that councillors serve vary from province to province. Unl ...
. The first Lord Mayor of Belfast was Daniel Dixon, who was elected in 1892. The current Lord Mayor is Tina Black of Sinn Féin, while the Deputy Lord Mayor is Michelle Kelly of the Alliance Party. The Lord Mayor's duties include presiding over meetings of the council, receiving distinguished visitors to the city, representing and promoting the city on the national and international stage. In 1997, unionists lost overall control of Belfast City Council for the first time in its history, with the
Alliance Party of Northern Ireland An alliance is a relationship among people, groups, or states that have joined together for mutual benefit or to achieve some common purpose, whether or not explicit agreement has been worked out among them. Members of an alliance are called ...
gaining the balance of power between
nationalists Nationalism is an idea and movement that holds that the nation should be congruent with the State (polity), state. As a movement, nationalism tends to promote the interests of a particular nation (as in a in-group and out-group, group of peo ...
and unionists. This position was confirmed in five subsequent council elections, with mayors from Sinn Féin and the
Social Democratic and Labour Party The Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) ( ga, Páirtí Sóisialta Daonlathach an Lucht Oibre) is a social-democratic and Irish nationalist political party in Northern Ireland Northern Ireland ( ga, Tuaisceart Éireann ; sco, ...
(SDLP), both of whom are nationalist parties, and the cross-community Alliance Party regularly elected since. The first nationalist Lord Mayor of Belfast was Alban Maginness of the SDLP, in 1997.


Northern Ireland Assembly and Westminster

As Northern Ireland's capital city, Belfast is host to the
Northern Ireland Assembly sco-ulster, Norlin Airlan Assemblie , legislature = Seventh Assembly , coa_pic = File:NI_Assembly.svg , coa_res = 250px , house_type = Unicameral Unicameralism (from ''uni''- "one" + Latin ''came ...
at Stormont, the site of the devolved legislature for Northern Ireland. Belfast is divided into four
Northern Ireland Assembly sco-ulster, Norlin Airlan Assemblie , legislature = Seventh Assembly , coa_pic = File:NI_Assembly.svg , coa_res = 250px , house_type = Unicameral Unicameralism (from ''uni''- "one" + Latin ''came ...
and UK parliamentary constituencies: Belfast North, Belfast West, Belfast South and Belfast East. All four extend beyond the city boundaries to include parts of Castlereagh,
Lisburn Lisburn (; ) is a city in Northern Ireland. It is southwest of Belfast city centre, on the River Lagan, which forms the boundary between County Antrim and County Down. First laid out in the 17th century by English and Welsh settlers, with th ...
and Newtownabbey districts. In the Northern Ireland Assembly Elections in 2022, Belfast elected 20 Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs), 5 from each
constituency An electoral district, also known as an election district, legislative district, voting district, constituency, riding, ward, division, or (election) precinct is a subdivision of a larger state (a country A country is a distinct part o ...
. Belfast elected 7 Sinn Féin, 5 DUP, 5 Alliance Party, 1 SDLP, 1 UUP and 1 PBPA MLAs. In the 2017 UK general election, Belfast elected one
Member of Parliament A member of parliament (MP) is the representative in parliament of the people who live in their electoral district. In many countries with bicameral parliaments, this term refers only to members of the lower house since upper house members o ...
(MP) from each constituency to the
House of Commons The House of Commons is the name for the elected lower house of the bicameral parliaments of the United Kingdom and Canada. In both of these countries, the Commons holds much more legislative power than the nominally upper house of parliament. T ...
at Westminster, London. This comprised 3 DUP and 1 Sinn Féin. In the 2019 UK general election, the DUP lost two of their seats in Belfast; to Sinn Féin in North Belfast and to the SDLP in South Belfast.


Geography

Belfast is at the western end of Belfast Lough and at the mouth of the River Lagan giving it the ideal location for the shipbuilding industry that once made it famous. When the ''
Titanic RMS ''Titanic'' was a British passenger Ocean liner, liner, operated by the White Star Line, which Sinking of the Titanic, sank in the North Atlantic Ocean on 15 April 1912 after striking an iceberg during her maiden voyage from Southampton ...
'' was built in Belfast in 1911–1912, Harland and Wolff had the largest shipyard in the world. Belfast is situated on Northern Ireland's eastern
coast The coast, also known as the coastline or seashore, is defined as the area where land meets the ocean, or as a line that forms the boundary between the land and the coastline. The Earth has around of coastline. Coasts are important zones in n ...
at . A consequence of this northern latitude is that it both endures short winter days and enjoys long summer evenings. During the
winter solstice The winter solstice, also called the hibernal solstice, occurs when either of Earth's geographical pole, poles reaches its maximum axial tilt, tilt away from the Sun. This happens twice yearly, once in each hemisphere (Northern Hemisphere, Nort ...
, the shortest day of the year, local sunset is before 16:00 while sunrise is around 08:45. This is balanced by the
summer solstice The summer solstice, also called the estival solstice or midsummer, occurs when one of Earth's geographical pole, poles has its maximum tilt toward the Sun. It happens twice yearly, once in each Hemispheres of Earth, hemisphere (Northern Hemisphe ...
in June, when the sun sets after 22:00 and rises before 05:00. In 1994, a
weir A weir or low head dam is a barrier across the width of a river that alters the flow characteristics of water and usually results in a change in the height of the river level. Weirs are also used to control the flow of water for outlets of l ...
was built across the river by the
Laganside Corporation The Laganside Corporation was a non-departmental public body formed by the Laganside Development (Northern Ireland) Order 1989 with the goal of regenerating large sections of land in Belfast, Northern Ireland adjacent to the River Lagan. This d ...
to raise the average water level so that it would cover the unseemly mud flats which gave Belfast its name (). The area of Belfast Local Government District is . The River Farset is also named after this
silt Silt is granular material of a size between sand and clay and composed mostly of broken grains of quartz. Silt may occur as a soil (often mixed with sand or clay) or as sediment mixed in suspension (chemistry), suspension with water. Silt usually ...
deposit (from the Irish ''feirste'' meaning "sand spit"). Originally a more significant river than it is today, the Farset formed a dock on High Street until the mid 19th century. Bank Street in the
city centre A city centre is the commercial, cultural and often the historical, political, and geographic heart of a city. The term "city centre" is primarily used in British English, and closely equivalent terms exist in other languages, such as "" in Fren ...
referred to the river bank and Bridge Street was named for the site of an early Farset bridge. Superseded by the River Lagan as the more important river in the city, the Farset now languishes in obscurity, under High Street. There are no less than twelve other minor rivers in and around Belfast, namely the Blackstaff, the Colin, the Connswater, the Cregagh, the Derriaghy, the Forth, the Knock, the Legoniel, the Loop, the Milewater, the Purdysburn and the Ravernet. The city is flanked on the north and northwest by a series of hills, including Divis Mountain, Black Mountain and
Cavehill Cave Hill or Cavehill is a rocky hill overlooking the city of Belfast, Northern Ireland, with a height of . It is marked by basalt cliffs and caves, and its distinguishing feature is 'Napoleon's Nose', a tall cliff which resembles the profile ...
, thought to be the inspiration for
Jonathan Swift Jonathan Swift (30 November 1667 – 19 October 1745) was an Anglo-Irish Satire, satirist, author, essayist, political pamphleteer (first for the Whig (British political party), Whigs, then for the Tories (British political party), Tories), poe ...
's ''
Gulliver's Travels ''Gulliver's Travels'', or ''Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World. In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First a Surgeon, and then a Captain of Several Ships'' is a 1726 in literature, 1726 prose satire by the Anglo-Irish writer and c ...
''. When Swift was living at Lilliput Cottage near the bottom of Belfast's Limestone Road, he imagined that the Cavehill resembled the shape of a sleeping giant safeguarding the city. The shape of the giant's nose, known locally as ''Napoleon's Nose'', is officially called McArt's Fort probably named after Art O'Neill, a 17th-century chieftain who controlled the area at that time. The Castlereagh Hills overlook the city on the southeast.


Climate

As with the vast majority of the rest of Ireland, Belfast has a
temperate In geography, the temperate climates of Earth occur in the middle latitudes (23.5° to 66.5° N/S of Equator), which span between the tropics and the polar regions of Earth. These zones generally have wider temperature ranges throughout t ...
oceanic climate An oceanic climate, also known as a marine climate, is the humid temperate climate sub-type in Köppen climate classification, Köppen classification ''Cfb'', typical of west coasts in higher middle latitudes of continents, generally featuring ...
(''Cfb'' in the
Köppen climate classification The Köppen climate classification is one of the most widely used climate classification systems. It was first published by German-Russian climatologist Wladimir Köppen (1846–1940) in 1884, with several later modifications by Köppen, nota ...
), with a narrow range of temperatures and rainfall throughout the year. The climate of Belfast is significantly milder than most other locations in the world at a similar latitude, due to the warming influence of the
Gulf Stream The Gulf Stream, together with its northern extension the North Atlantic Current, North Atlantic Drift, is a warm and swift Atlantic Ocean, Atlantic ocean current that originates in the Gulf of Mexico and flows through the Straits of Florida a ...
. There are currently five weather observing stations in the Belfast area: Helen's Bay, Stormont, Newforge, Castlereagh, and Ravenhill Road. Slightly further afield is Aldergrove Airport. The highest temperature recorded at any official weather station in the Belfast area was at Shaw's Bridge on 12 July 1983. The city gets significant precipitation (greater than 1 mm) on 157 days in an average year with an average annual rainfall of , less than areas of northern England or most of
Scotland Scotland (, ) is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. Covering the northern third of the island of Great Britain, mainland Scotland has a Anglo-Scottish border, border with England to the southeast ...
, but higher than
Dublin Dublin (; , or ) is the capital and largest city of Republic of Ireland, Ireland. On a bay at the mouth of the River Liffey, it is in the Provinces of Ireland, province of Leinster, bordered on the south by the Dublin Mountains, a part of th ...

Dublin
or the south-east coast of Ireland. As an urban and coastal area, Belfast typically gets snow on fewer than 10 days per year. The absolute maximum temperature at the weather station at Stormont is , set during July 1983. In an average year the warmest day will rise to a temperature of with a day of or above occurring roughly once every two in three years. The absolute minimum temperature at Stormont is , during January 1982, although in an average year the coldest night will fall no lower than with air frost being recorded on just 26 nights. The lowest temperature to occur in recent years was on 22 December 2010. The nearest weather station for which sunshine data and longer term observations are available is Belfast International Airport ( Aldergrove). Temperature extremes here have slightly more variability due to the more inland location. The average warmest day at Aldergrove for example will reach a temperature of , ( higher than Stormont) and 2.1 days should attain a temperature of or above in total. Conversely the coldest night of the year averages (or lower than Stormont) and 39 nights should register an air frost. Some 13 more frosty nights than Stormont. The minimum temperature at Aldergrove was , during December 2010.


Areas and districts

The townlands of Belfast are its oldest surviving land divisions and most pre-date the city. Belfast expanded very rapidly from being a market town to becoming an industrial city during the course of the 19th century. Because of this, it is less an agglomeration of villages and towns which have expanded into each other, than other comparable cities, such as
Manchester Manchester () is a city in Greater Manchester, England. It had a population of 552,000 in 2021. It is bordered by the Cheshire Plain to the south, the Pennines to the north and east, and the neighbouring city of City of Salford, Salford to ...
or
Birmingham Birmingham ( ) is a City status in the United Kingdom, city and metropolitan borough in the metropolitan county of West Midlands (county), West Midlands in England. It is the second-largest city in the United Kingdom with a population of 1. ...
. The city expanded to the natural barrier of the hills that surround it, overwhelming other settlements. Consequently, the arterial roads along which this expansion took place (such as the Falls Road or the Newtownards Road) are more significant in defining the districts of the city than nucleated settlements. Parts of Belfast are segregated by walls, commonly known as "
peace lines The peace lines or peace walls are a series of separation barriers in Northern Ireland that separate predominantly Irish republicanism, republican and Irish nationalism, nationalist Irish Catholics, Catholic neighbourhoods from predomina ...
", erected by the
British Army The British Army is the principal land warfare force of the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a country in Europe, off the north-western ...
after August 1969, and which still divide 14 districts in the inner city. In 2008 a process was proposed for the removal of the 'peace walls'. In June 2007, a £16 million programme was announced which will transform and redevelop streets and public spaces in the city centre. Major arterial roads ( quality bus corridor) into the city include the
Antrim Road The Antrim Road is a major arterial route and area of housing and commerce that runs from inner city north Belfast to Dunadry, passing through Newtownabbey and Templepatrick. It forms part of the A6 road (Northern Ireland), A6 road, a traffic rout ...
, Shore Road, Holywood Road, Newtownards Road, Castlereagh Road, Cregagh Road,
Ormeau Road Ormeau Road is a road in south Belfast, the capital of Northern Ireland. Ormeau Park is adjacent to it. It forms part of the A24 road (Northern Ireland), A24. History The road, as currently laid out, dates from the first decades of the 19th ce ...
, Malone Road,
Lisburn Road Lisburn Road is a main arterial route linking Belfast Belfast ( , ; from ga, Béal Feirste , meaning 'mouth of the sand-bank ford') is the capital and largest city of Northern Ireland, standing on the banks of the River Lagan on the east ...
, Falls Road, Springfield Road,
Shankill Road The Shankill Road () is one of the main roads leading through West Belfast, in Northern Ireland. It runs through the working class, working-class, predominantly Ulster loyalism, loyalist, area known as the Shankill. The road stretches westwards fo ...
, and Crumlin Road, Four Winds. Belfast city centre is divided into two postcode districts, ''BT1'' for the area lying north of the City Hall, and ''BT2'' for the area to its south. The industrial estate and docklands ''BT3''. The rest of the Belfast
post town A post town is a required part of all postal addresses in the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a country in Europe, off the north-western ...
is divided in a broadly
clockwise Two-dimensional rotation can occur in two possible directions. Clockwise motion (abbreviated CW) proceeds in the same direction as a clock's hands: from the top to the right, then down and then to the left, and back up to the top. The opposite s ...
system from ''BT3'' in the north-east round to ''BT15'', with ''BT16'' and ''BT17'' further out to the east and west respectively. Although ''BT'' derives from ''Belfast'', the
BT postcode area The BT postcode area, also known as the Belfast postcode area,Royal Mail, ''Address Management Guide'', (2004) covers all of Northern Ireland Northern Ireland ( ga, Tuaisceart Éireann ; sco, label=Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots, No ...
extends across the whole of Northern Ireland. Since 2001, boosted by increasing numbers of tourists, the city council has developed a number of cultural quarters. The Cathedral Quarter takes its name from St Anne's Cathedral (
Church of Ireland The Church of Ireland ( ga, Eaglais na hÉireann, ; sco, label=Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster-Scots, Kirk o Airlann, ) is a Christian church in Ireland and an autonomous province of the Anglican Communion. It is organised on an all-Ireland bas ...
) and has taken on the mantle of the city's key cultural locality. It hosts a yearly visual and performing arts festival. Custom House Square is one of the city's main outdoor venues for free concerts and street entertainment. The Gaeltacht Quarter is an area around the Falls Road in west Belfast which promotes and encourages the use of the
Irish language Irish (an Caighdeán Oifigiúil, Standard Irish: ), also known as Gaelic, is a Goidelic languages, Goidelic language of the Insular Celtic branch of the Celtic language family, which is a part of the Indo-European languages, Indo-European lang ...
. The Queen's Quarter in south Belfast is named after Queen's University. The area has a large student population and hosts the annual Belfast International Arts Festival each autumn. It is home to
Botanic Gardens A botanical garden or botanic gardenThe terms ''botanic'' and ''botanical'' and ''garden'' or ''gardens'' are used more-or-less interchangeably, although the word ''botanic'' is generally reserved for the earlier, more traditional gardens, an ...
and the
Ulster Museum The Ulster Museum, located in the Belfast Botanic Gardens, Botanic Gardens in Belfast, has around 8,000 square metres (90,000 sq. ft.) of public display space, featuring material from the collections of fine art and applied art, archaeolog ...
, which was reopened in 2009 after major redevelopment. The Golden Mile is the name given to the mile between Belfast City Hall and Queen's University. Taking in Dublin Road, Great Victoria Street, Shaftesbury Square and Bradbury Place, it contains some of the best bars and restaurants in the city. Since the
Good Friday Agreement The Good Friday Agreement (GFA), or Belfast Agreement ( ga, Comhaontú Aoine an Chéasta or ; Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster-Scots: or ), is a pair of agreements signed on 10 April 1998 that ended most of the violence of The Troubles, a po ...
in 1998, the nearby Lisburn Road has developed into the city's most exclusive shopping strip. Finally, the
Titanic Quarter Titanic Quarter in Belfast, Northern Ireland, is a large-scale waterfront regeneration, comprising historic maritime landmarks, film studios, education facilities, apartments, a riverside entertainment district, and the world's largest Titanic ...
covers of reclaimed land adjacent to Belfast Harbour, formerly known as ''Queen's Island''. Named after ''
RMS Titanic RMS ''Titanic'' was a British passenger Ocean liner, liner, operated by the White Star Line, which Sinking of the Titanic, sank in the North Atlantic Ocean on 15 April 1912 after striking an iceberg during her maiden voyage from Southampton ...
'', which was built here in 1912, work has begun which promises to transform some former shipyard land into "one of the largest waterfront developments in Europe". Plans include apartments, a riverside entertainment district, and a major Titanic-themed museum. In its 2018 report on Best Places to Live in Britain, ''The Sunday Times'' named Ballyhackamore, "the brunch capital of Belfast", as the best place in Northern Ireland. The district of Ballyhackamore has even acquired the name "Ballysnackamore" due to the preponderance of dining establishments in the area.


Cityscape


Architecture

The architectural style of Belfast's public buildings range from a small set of Georgian buildings, many examples of Victorian, including the main ''Lanyon Building'' at
Queen's University Belfast Queen's University Belfast, officially The Queen's University of Belfast (commonly referred to as Queen's and QUB), is a Public university, public research university in Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom. The university received its charter ...
and the Linenhall Library, (both designed by Sir Charles Lanyon). There are also many examples of
Edwardian The Edwardian era or Edwardian period of British history spanned the reign of King Edward VII, 1901 to 1910 and is sometimes extended to the start of the First World War. The death of Queen Victoria in January 1901 marked the end of the Victori ...
, such as the City Hall, to modern, such as the
Waterfront Hall Belfast Waterfront is a multi-purpose conference and entertainment centre, in Belfast Belfast ( , ; from ga, Béal Feirste , meaning 'mouth of the sand-bank ford') is the capital and largest city of Northern Ireland, standing on the ba ...
. The City Hall was finished in 1906 and was built to reflect Belfast's city status, granted by
Queen Victoria Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria; 24 May 1819 – 22 January 1901) was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until Death and state funeral of Queen Victoria, her death in 1901. Her reign of 63 years and 21 ...

Queen Victoria
in 1888. The
Edwardian The Edwardian era or Edwardian period of British history spanned the reign of King Edward VII, 1901 to 1910 and is sometimes extended to the start of the First World War. The death of Queen Victoria in January 1901 marked the end of the Victori ...
architectural style of Belfast City Hall influenced the Victoria Memorial in
Calcutta Kolkata (, or , ; also known as Calcutta , the official name until 2001) is the capital of the India India, officially the Republic of India (Hindi: ), is a country in South Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by ar ...
, India, and
Durban Durban ( ) ( zu, eThekwini, from meaning 'the port' also called zu, eZibubulungwini for the mountain range that terminates in the area), nicknamed ''Durbs'',Ishani ChettyCity nicknames in SA and across the worldArticle on ''news24.com'' from ...
City Hall in South Africa. The dome is high and figures above the door state "
Hibernia ''Hibernia'' () is the Classical Latin Classical Latin is the form of Literary Latin recognized as a literary standard by writers of the late Roman Republic and early Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Romanum ; grc ...
encouraging and promoting the Commerce and Arts of the City". Among the city's grandest buildings are two former banks:
Ulster Bank Ulster Bank ( ga, Banc Uladh) is a large retail bank, and one of the traditional Big Four Irish clearing banks. The Ulster Bank Group is subdivided into two separate legal entities: National Westminster Bank National Westminster Bank, co ...
in Waring Street (built in 1860) and Northern Bank, in nearby Donegall Street (built in 1769). The
Royal Courts of Justice The Royal Courts of Justice, commonly called the Law Courts, is a court building in Westminster which houses the High Court of Justice of England and Wales, High Court and Court of Appeal of England and Wales. The High Court also sits on circui ...
in Chichester Street are home to Northern Ireland's
Supreme Court A supreme court is the highest court A court is any person or institution, often as a government institution, with the authority to Adjudication, adjudicate legal disputes between Party (law), parties and carry out the administration of ju ...
. Many of Belfast's oldest buildings are found in the Cathedral Quarter area, which is currently undergoing redevelopment as the city's main cultural and tourist area. Windsor House, high, has 23 floors and is the second tallest building (as distinct from structure) in Ireland. Work has started on the taller Obel Tower, which already surpasses the height of Windsor House in its unfinished state. The ornately decorated Crown Liquor Saloon, designed by Joseph Anderson in 1876, in Great Victoria Street is one of only two pubs in the UK that are owned by the
National Trust The National Trust, formally the National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty, is a charity and membership organisation for heritage conservation in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. In Scotland, there is a separate and ...
(the other is
the George Inn, Southwark The George Inn, or The George, is a public house established in the medieval period on Borough High Street in Southwark, London, owned and leased by the National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty, National Trust. It is loc ...
in London). It was made internationally famous as the setting for the classic film, '' Odd Man Out'', starring
James Mason James Neville Mason (; 15 May 190927 July 1984) was an English actor. He achieved considerable success in British cinema before becoming a star in Hollywood. He was the top box-office attraction in the UK in 1944 and 1945; his British films inc ...
. The restaurant panels in the Crown Bar were originally made for ''Britannic'', the sister ship of the ''Titanic'', built in Belfast. The Harland and Wolff shipyard has two of the largest
dry dock A dry dock (sometimes drydock or dry-dock) is a narrow basin or vessel that can be flooded to allow a load to be floated in, then drained to allow that load to come to rest on a dry platform. Dry docks are used for the construction, maintenance, ...
s in Europe, where the giant cranes, Samson and Goliath stand out against Belfast's skyline. Including the Waterfront Hall and the Odyssey Arena, Belfast has several other venues for performing arts. The architecture of the Grand Opera House has an oriental theme and was completed in 1895. It was bombed several times during the Troubles but has now been restored to its former glory. The Lyric Theatre, which re-opened on 1 May 2011 after undergoing a rebuilding programme and is the only full-time producing theatre in Northern Ireland, is where film star
Liam Neeson William John Neeson (born 7 June 1952) is an actor from Northern Ireland Northern Ireland ( ga, Tuaisceart Éireann ; sco, label=Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots, Norlin Airlann) is a part of the United Kingdom, situated in the nor ...
began his career. The Ulster Hall (1859–1862) was originally designed for grand dances but is now used primarily as a concert and sporting venue.
Lloyd George David Lloyd George, 1st Earl Lloyd-George of Dwyfor, (17 January 1863 – 26 March 1945) was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1916 to 1922. He was a Liberal Party (United Kingdom), Liberal Party politician from Wales, known for lea ...
, Parnell and
Patrick Pearse Patrick Henry Pearse (also known as Pádraig or Pádraic Pearse; ga, Pádraig Anraí Mac Piarais; 10 November 1879 – 3 May 1916) was an Irish teacher, barrister, Irish poetry, poet, writer, Irish nationalism, nationalist, Irish republicanism, ...
all attended political rallies there. A legacy of the Troubles are the many '
peace lines The peace lines or peace walls are a series of separation barriers in Northern Ireland that separate predominantly Irish republicanism, republican and Irish nationalism, nationalist Irish Catholics, Catholic neighbourhoods from predomina ...
' or ' peace walls' that still act as barriers to reinforce ethno-sectarian residential segregation in the city. In 2017, the Belfast Interface Project published a study entitled "Interface Barriers, Peacelines & Defensive Architecture" that identified 97 separate walls, barriers and interfaces in Belfast. A history of the development of these structures can be found at the Peacewall Archive.


Parks and gardens

Sitting at the mouth of the River Lagan where it becomes a deep and sheltered lough, Belfast is surrounded by mountains that create a micro-climate conducive to horticulture. From the Victorian Botanic Gardens in the heart of the city to the heights of Cave Hill Country Park, the great expanse of
Lagan Valley The Lagan Valley (, Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster Scots: ''Glen Lagan'') is an area of Northern Ireland between Belfast and Lisburn. The River Lagan rises on Slieve Croob in County Down and flows generally northward discharging into Belfast Lough. ...
Regional Park to Colin Glen, Belfast contains an abundance of parkland and forest parks. Parks and gardens are an integral part of Belfast's heritage, and home to an abundance of local wildlife and popular places for a picnic, a stroll or a jog. Numerous events take place throughout including festivals such as Rose Week and special activities such as bird watching evenings and great beast hunts. Belfast has over forty public parks. The Forest of Belfast is a partnership between government and local groups, set up in 1992 to manage and conserve the city's parks and open spaces. They have commissioned more than 30 public sculptures since 1993. In 2006, the
City Council A municipal council is the legislative body of a municipality A municipality is usually a single administrative division Administrative division, administrative unit,Article 3(1). country subdivision, administrative region, subnational ...
set aside £8 million to continue this work. The Belfast Naturalists' Field Club was founded in 1863 and is administered by National Museums and Galleries of Northern Ireland. With an average of 670,000 visitors per year between 2007 and 2011, one of the most popular parks is
Botanic Gardens A botanical garden or botanic gardenThe terms ''botanic'' and ''botanical'' and ''garden'' or ''gardens'' are used more-or-less interchangeably, although the word ''botanic'' is generally reserved for the earlier, more traditional gardens, an ...
in the Queen's Quarter. Built in the 1830s and designed by Sir Charles Lanyon, Botanic Gardens Palm House is one of the earliest examples of a curvilinear and cast iron glasshouse. Other attractions in the park include the Tropical Ravine, a humid jungle glen built in 1889, rose gardens and public events ranging from live opera broadcasts to pop concerts. U2 played here in 1997. Sir Thomas and Lady Dixon Park, to the south of the city centre, attracts thousands of visitors each year to its International Rose Garden. Rose Week in July each year features over 20,000 blooms. It has an area of of meadows, woodland and gardens and features a
Diana, Princess of Wales Diana, Princess of Wales (born Diana Frances Spencer; 1 July 1961 – 31 August 1997) was a member of the British royal family. She was the first wife of King Charles III (then Prince of Wales) and mother of Princes William, Prince of Wales, ...
Memorial Garden, a
Japanese garden are traditional gardens whose designs are accompanied by Japanese aesthetics and philosophical ideas, avoid artificial ornamentation, and highlight the natural landscape. Plants and worn, aged materials are generally used by Japanese garden desig ...
, a
walled garden A walled garden is a garden enclosed by high walls, especially when this is done for horticultural rather than security purposes, although originally all gardens may have been enclosed for protection from animal or human intruders. In temperate c ...
, and the Golden Crown Fountain commissioned in 2002 as part of the Queen's Golden Jubilee celebrations. In 2008, Belfast was named a finalist in the Large City (200,001 and over) category of the RHS
Britain in Bloom Britain most often refers to: * The United Kingdom, a sovereign state in Europe comprising the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland and many smaller islands * Great Britain, the largest island in the United King ...
competition along with
London Borough of Croydon The London Borough of Croydon () is a London boroughs, London borough in south London, part of Outer London. It covers an area of . It is the southernmost borough of London. At its centre is the historic town of Croydon from which the borough ...
and
Sheffield Sheffield is a city status in the United Kingdom, city in South Yorkshire, England, whose name derives from the River Sheaf which runs through it. The city serves as the administrative centre of the City of Sheffield. It is Historic counties o ...
.
Belfast Zoo Belfast Zoological Gardens (also known as ''Bellevue Zoo'') is a zoo in Belfast, Northern Ireland. It is in a relatively secluded location on the northeastern slope of Cavehill, overlooking Belfast's Antrim Road. Belfast Zoo is one of the top ...
is owned by Belfast City Council. The council spends £1.5 million every year on running and promoting the zoo, which is one of the few local government-funded zoos in the UK and Ireland. The zoo is one of the top visitor attractions in Northern Ireland, receiving more than 295,000 visitors a year. The majority of the animals are in danger in their natural habitat. The zoo houses more than 1,200 animals of 140 species including
Asian elephant The Asian elephant (''Elephas maximus''), also known as the Asiatic elephant, is the only living species of the genus ''Elephas'' and is distributed throughout the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia, from India in the west, Nepal in the no ...
s,
Barbary lion The Barbary lion, also called the North African lion, Berber lion, Atlas lion, and Egyptian lion, is an extinct population Population typically refers to the number of people in a single area, whether it be a city A city is a human set ...
s, Malayan sun bears (one of the few in the United Kingdom), two species of penguin, a family of
western lowland gorilla The western lowland gorilla (''Gorilla gorilla gorilla'') is one of two Critically Endangered subspecies of the western gorilla (''Gorilla gorilla'') that lives in Montane ecosystems#Montane forests, montane, Old-growth forest, primary and sec ...
s, a troop of
common chimpanzee The chimpanzee (''Pan troglodytes''), also known as simply the chimp, is a species of Hominidae, great ape native to the forest and savannah of tropical Africa. It has four confirmed subspecies and a fifth proposed subspecies. When its close r ...
s, a pair of
red panda The red panda (''Ailurus fulgens''), also known as the lesser panda, is a small mammal native to the eastern Himalayas and southwestern China. It has dense reddish-brown fur with a black belly and legs, white-lined ears, a mostly white muzzle ...
s, a pair of Goodfellow's tree-kangaroos and Francois' langurs. The zoo also carries out important conservation work and takes part in European and international breeding programmes which help to ensure the survival of many species under threat.


Demography

At the 2001 census, the population was 276,459, while 579,554 people lived in the wider Belfast Metropolitan Area. This made it the fifteenth-largest city in the United Kingdom, but the eleventh-largest conurbation. Belfast experienced a huge growth in population in the first half of the 20th century. This rise slowed and peaked around the start of the Troubles with the 1971 census showing almost 600,000 people in the Belfast Urban Area. Since then, the inner city numbers have dropped dramatically as people have moved to swell the Greater Belfast suburb population. The 2001 census population in the same Urban Area had fallen to 277,391 people, with 579,554 people living in the wider Belfast Metropolitan Area. The 2001 census recorded 81,650 people from Catholic backgrounds and 79,650 people from Protestant backgrounds of working age living in Belfast. The population density in 2011 was 24.88 people/hectare (compared to 1.34 for the rest of Northern Ireland). As with many cities, Belfast's inner city is currently characterised by the elderly, students and single young people, while families tend to live on the periphery. Socio-economic areas radiate out from the
Central Business District A central business district (CBD) is the commercial and business centre of a city. It contains commercial space and offices, and in larger cities will often be described as a financial district. Geographically, it often coincides with the "city ...
, with a pronounced wedge of affluence extending out the Malone Road and Upper Malone Road to the south. An area of deprivation is found in the inner parts of the north and west of the city. The areas around the Falls Road,
Ardoyne Ardoyne () is a working class and mainly Roman Catholic Church, Catholic and Irish republicanism, Irish republican district in north Belfast, Northern Ireland. It gained notoriety due to the large number of incidents during The Troubles. Found ...
and New Lodge (Catholic nationalist) and the
Shankill Road The Shankill Road () is one of the main roads leading through West Belfast, in Northern Ireland. It runs through the working class, working-class, predominantly Ulster loyalism, loyalist, area known as the Shankill. The road stretches westwards fo ...
(Protestant loyalist) are among the ten most deprived wards in Northern Ireland. Despite a period of relative peace, most areas and districts of Belfast still reflect the divided nature of Northern Ireland as a whole. Many areas are still highly segregated along ethnic, political and religious lines, especially in working-class neighbourhoods. These zones –
Catholic The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with 1.3 billion baptized Catholics worldwide . It is among the world's oldest and largest international institutions, and has played a ...
/ republican on one side and
Protestant Protestantism is a branch of Christianity Christianity is an Abrahamic religions, Abrahamic Monotheism, monotheistic religion based on the Life of Jesus in the New Testament, life and Teachings of Jesus, teachings of Jesus, Jesus of Na ...
/
loyalist Loyalism, in the United Kingdom, its British Overseas Territories, overseas territories and its British Empire, former colonies, refers to the allegiance to the British crown or the United Kingdom. In North America, the most common usage of ...
on the other – are invariably marked by
flags A flag is a piece of fabric Textile is an Hyponymy and hypernymy, umbrella term that includes various Fiber, fiber-based materials, including fibers, yarns, Staple (textiles)#Filament fiber, filaments, Thread (yarn), threads, differ ...
,
graffiti Graffiti (plural; singular ''graffiti'' or ''graffito'', the latter rarely used except in archeology) is art that is written, painted or drawn on a wall or other surface, usually without permission and within public view. Graffiti ranges from s ...
and
murals A mural is any piece of graphic artwork that is painted or applied directly to a wall, ceiling or other permanent substrate. Mural techniques include fresco Fresco (plural ''frescos'' or ''frescoes'') is a technique of Mural, mural pain ...
. Segregation has been present throughout the history of Belfast but has been maintained and increased by each outbreak of violence in the city. This escalation in segregation, described as a "ratchet effect", has shown little sign of decreasing. The highest levels of segregation in the city are in west Belfast with many areas greater than 90% Catholic. Opposite but comparatively high levels are seen in the predominantly Protestant east Belfast. Areas where segregated working-class areas meet are known as interface areas and sometimes marked by
peace lines The peace lines or peace walls are a series of separation barriers in Northern Ireland that separate predominantly Irish republicanism, republican and Irish nationalism, nationalist Irish Catholics, Catholic neighbourhoods from predomina ...
.
Ethnic minority The term 'minority group' has different usages depending on the context. According to its common usage, a minority group can simply be understood in terms of demographic sizes within a population: i.e. a group in society with the least number o ...
communities have been in Belfast since the 1930s. The largest groups are Poles, Chinese and Indians. Since the expansion of the European Union, numbers have been boosted by an influx of Eastern European
immigrants Immigration is the international movement of people to a destination country of which they are not natives or where they do not possess citizenship in order to settle as Permanent residency, permanent residents or Naturalization, naturalize ...
. Census figures (2011) showed that Belfast has a total non-white population of 10,219 or 3.3%, while 18,420 or 6.6% of the population were born outside the UK and Ireland. Almost half of those born outside the UK and Ireland live in south Belfast, where they comprise 9.5% of the population. The majority of the estimated 5,000 Muslims and 200
Hindu Hindus (; ) are people who religiously adhere to Hinduism.Jeffery D. Long (2007), A Vision for Hinduism, IB Tauris, , pages 35–37 Historically, the term has also been used as a geographical, cultural, and later religious identifier for ...
families living in Northern Ireland live in the Greater Belfast area.


2011 Census

On Census Day (27 March 2011) the usually resident population of Belfast Local Government District was 333,871 accounting for 18.44% of the NI total. This represents a 1.60% increase since the 2001 Census. On Census Day 27 March 2011, in Belfast Local Government District (2014), considering the resident population: * 96.77% were white (including Irish Traveller) while 3.23% were from an ethnic minority population; * 48.82% belong to or were brought up in the Catholic faith and 42.47% belong to or were brought up in a 'Protestant and Other Christian (including Christian related)' denomination; and * 43.32% indicated that they had a British national identity, 35.10% had an Irish national identity and 26.92% had a Northern Irish national identity. Respondents could indicate more than one national identity On Census Day 27 March 2011, in Belfast Local Government District (2014), considering the population aged 3 years old and over: * 13.45% had some knowledge of Irish; * 5.23% had some knowledge of Ulster-Scots; and * 4.34% did not have English as their first language. On Census Day 27 March 2011, considering the population aged 16 years old and over: * 25.56% had a degree or higher qualification; while * 41.21% had no or low (Level 1*) qualifications. Level 1 is 1–4 O Levels/CSE/GCSE (any grades) or equivalent On Census Day 27 March 2011, considering the population aged 16 to 74 years old: * 63.84% were economically active, 36.16% were economically inactive; * 52.90% were in paid employment; and * 5.59% were unemployed, of these 43.56% were long-term unemployed. Long-term unemployed are those who stated that they have not worked since 2009 or earlier File:Population Density Belfast City Council 2011 Census.png, Population density File:Religion Belfast City Council 2011 Census.png, Percentage Catholic or brought up Catholic File:National Identity Belfast City Council 2011 Census.png, Most commonly stated national identity File:Born Outside UK And Ireland Belfast City Council 2011 Census.png, Percentage born outside the UK and Ireland


Economy

When the population of Belfast town began to grow in the 17th century, its economy was built on commerce. It provided a market for the surrounding countryside and the natural inlet of Belfast Lough gave the city its own port. The port supplied an avenue for trade with Great Britain and later Europe and North America. In the mid-17th century, Belfast exported beef, butter, hides, tallow and corn and it imported coal, cloth, wine, brandy, paper, timber and tobacco. Around this time, the linen trade in Northern Ireland blossomed and by the middle of the 18th century, one fifth of all the linen exported from Ireland was shipped from Belfast. The present city however is a product of the
Industrial Revolution The Industrial Revolution was the transition to new manufacturing processes in Great Britain, continental Europe, and the United States, that occurred during the period from around 1760 to about 1820–1840. This transition included going fr ...
. It was not until industry transformed the linen and shipbuilding trades that the economy and the population boomed. By the turn of the 19th century, Belfast had transformed into the largest linen producing centre in the world, earning the city and its hinterlands the nickname " Linenopolis" during the Victorian Era and into the early part of the 20th century. Belfast harbour was dredged in 1845 to provide deeper berths for larger ships. Donegall Quay was built out into the river as the harbour was developed further and trade flourished. The Harland and Wolff shipbuilding firm was created in 1861, and by the time the ''
Titanic RMS ''Titanic'' was a British passenger Ocean liner, liner, operated by the White Star Line, which Sinking of the Titanic, sank in the North Atlantic Ocean on 15 April 1912 after striking an iceberg during her maiden voyage from Southampton ...
'' was built, in 1912, it had become the largest shipyard in the world.
Short Brothers Short Brothers plc, usually referred to as Shorts or Short, is an aerospace company based in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Shorts was founded in 1908 in London, and was the first company in the world to make production aeroplanes. It was particu ...
plc is a British aerospace company based in Belfast. It was the first aircraft manufacturing company in the world. The company began its association with Belfast in 1936, with Short & Harland Ltd, a venture jointly owned by Shorts and Harland and Wolff. Now known as Shorts Bombardier it works as an international aircraft manufacturer located near the Port of Belfast. The rise of mass-produced and cotton clothing following
World War I World War I (28 July 1914 11 November 1918), often abbreviated as WWI, was List of wars and anthropogenic disasters by death toll, one of the deadliest global conflicts in history. Belligerents included much of Europe, the Russian Empire, ...
were some of the factors which led to the decline of Belfast's international linen trade. Like many British cities dependent on traditional heavy industry, Belfast suffered serious decline since the 1960s, exacerbated greatly in the 1970s and 1980s by the Troubles. More than 100,000 manufacturing jobs have been lost since the 1970s. For several decades, Northern Ireland's fragile economy required significant public support from the British exchequer of up to £4 billion per year.


After the Troubles

The IRA ceasefire in 1994 and the signing of the Good Friday Agreement in 1998 have given investors increased confidence to invest in Belfast. This has led to a period of sustained economic growth and large-scale redevelopment of the city centre. Developments include Victoria Square, the Cathedral Quarter, and the
Laganside The Laganside Corporation was a non-departmental public body In the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a country in Europe, off the north-we ...
with the
Odyssey The ''Odyssey'' (; grc, Ὀδύσσεια, Odýsseia, ) is one of two major Ancient Greek literature, ancient Greek Epic poetry, epic poems attributed to Homer. It is one of the oldest extant works of literature still widely read by moder ...
complex and the landmark
Waterfront Hall Belfast Waterfront is a multi-purpose conference and entertainment centre, in Belfast Belfast ( , ; from ga, Béal Feirste , meaning 'mouth of the sand-bank ford') is the capital and largest city of Northern Ireland, standing on the ba ...
. Other major developments include the regeneration of the
Titanic Quarter Titanic Quarter in Belfast, Northern Ireland, is a large-scale waterfront regeneration, comprising historic maritime landmarks, film studios, education facilities, apartments, a riverside entertainment district, and the world's largest Titanic ...
, and the erection of the Obel Tower, a skyscraper set to be the tallest tower on the island. Today, Belfast is Northern Ireland's educational and commercial hub. In February 2006, Belfast's unemployment rate stood at 4.2%, lower than both the Northern Ireland and the UK average of 5.5%. Over the past 10 years employment has grown by 16.4%, compared with 9.2% for the UK as a whole. Northern Ireland's peace dividend has led to soaring property prices in the city. In 2007, Belfast saw house prices grow by 50%, the fastest rate of growth in the UK. In March 2007, the average house in Belfast cost £91,819, with the average in south Belfast being £141,000. In 2004, Belfast had the lowest owner occupation rate in Northern Ireland at 54%. Peace has boosted the numbers of tourists coming to Belfast. There were 6.4 million visitors in 2005, which was a growth of 8.5% from 2004. The visitors spent £285.2 million, supporting more than 15,600 jobs. Visitor numbers rose by 6% to reach 6.8 million in 2006, with tourists spending £324 million, an increase of 15% on 2005. The city's two airports have helped make the city one of the most visited weekend destinations in Europe. Belfast has been the fastest-growing economy of the thirty largest cities in the UK over the past decade, a new economy report by Howard Spencer has found. ''"That's because fthe fundamentals of the UK economy and ecausepeople actually want to invest in the UK,"'' he commented on that report.
BBC #REDIRECT BBC
Here i going to introduce about the best teacher of my life b BALAJI sir. He is the precious gift that I got befor 2yrs . How has helped and thought all the concept and made my success in the 10th board exam. ...
Radio 4's World reported furthermore that despite higher levels of corporation tax in the UK than in the Republic. There are "huge amounts" of foreign investment coming into the country. ''
The Times ''The Times'' is a British Newspaper#Daily, daily Newspaper#National, national newspaper based in London. It began in 1785 under the title ''The Daily Universal Register'', adopting its current name on 1 January 1788. ''The Times'' and its s ...
'' wrote about Belfast's growing economy: "According to the region's development agency, throughout the 1990s Northern Ireland had the fastest-growing regional economy in the UK, with GDP increasing 1 per cent per annum faster than the rest of the country. As with any modern economy, the service sector is vital to Northern Ireland's development and is enjoying excellent growth. In particular, the region has a booming tourist industry with record levels of visitors and tourist revenues and has established itself as a significant location for call centres." Since the ending of the region's conflict tourism has boomed in Northern Ireland, greatly aided by low cost. ''
Der Spiegel ''Der Spiegel'' (, lit. ''"The Mirror"'') is a German weekly news magazine published in Hamburg. With a weekly circulation of 695,100 copies, it was the largest such publication in Europe in 2011. It was founded in 1947 by John Seymour Chaloner, ...
'', a German weekly magazine for politics and economy, titled Belfast as ''The New Celtic Tiger'' which is "open for business".


Infrastructure

Belfast saw the worst of the Troubles in Northern Ireland, with nearly half of the total deaths in the conflict occurring in the city. However, since the
Good Friday Agreement The Good Friday Agreement (GFA), or Belfast Agreement ( ga, Comhaontú Aoine an Chéasta or ; Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster-Scots: or ), is a pair of agreements signed on 10 April 1998 that ended most of the violence of The Troubles, a po ...
in 1998, there has been significant
urban regeneration Urban renewal (also called urban regeneration in the United Kingdom and urban redevelopment in the United States) is a program of land redevelopment often used to address urban decay in cities. Urban renewal involves the clearing out of blighte ...
in the city centre including Victoria Square, Queen's Island and
Laganside The Laganside Corporation was a non-departmental public body In the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a country in Europe, off the north-we ...
as well as the Odyssey complex and the landmark
Waterfront Hall Belfast Waterfront is a multi-purpose conference and entertainment centre, in Belfast Belfast ( , ; from ga, Béal Feirste , meaning 'mouth of the sand-bank ford') is the capital and largest city of Northern Ireland, standing on the ba ...
. The city is served by two airports: The George Best Belfast City Airport adjacent to Belfast Lough and Belfast International Airport which is near
Lough Neagh Lough Neagh ( ) is a freshwater lake in Northern Ireland and is the largest lake in the island of Ireland, the United Kingdom and the British Isles. It has a surface area of and supplies 40% of Northern Ireland's water. Its main inflows come ...
.
Queen's University of Belfast Queen's University Belfast, officially The Queen's University of Belfast (commonly referred to as Queen's and QUB), is a Public university, public research university in Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom. The university received its charter ...
is the main university in the city. The
Ulster University sco, Ulstèr Universitie , image = Ulster University coat of arms.png , caption = , motto_lang = , mottoeng = , latin_name = Universitas Ulidiae , established = 1865 – Magee College 1953 - Magee Un ...
also maintains a campus in the city, which concentrates on fine art, design and architecture. Belfast is one of the constituent cities that makes up the Dublin-Belfast corridor region, which has a population of just under 3 million.


Utilities

Most of Belfast's water is supplied via the Aquarius pipeline from the Silent Valley Reservoir in
County Down
County Down
, created to collect water from the
Mourne Mountains The Mourne Mountains ( ; ga, Beanna Boirche), also called the Mournes or Mountains of Mourne, are a granite mountain range in County Down in the south-east of Northern Ireland. They include the highest mountains in Northern Ireland, the high ...
. The rest of the city's water is sourced from
Lough Neagh Lough Neagh ( ) is a freshwater lake in Northern Ireland and is the largest lake in the island of Ireland, the United Kingdom and the British Isles. It has a surface area of and supplies 40% of Northern Ireland's water. Its main inflows come ...
, via ''Dunore Water Treatment Works'' in County Antrim. The citizens of Belfast pay for their water in their rates bill. Plans to bring in additional water tariffs have been deferred by
devolution Devolution is the statutory delegation of powers from the central government of a sovereign state A sovereign state or sovereign country, is a polity, political entity represented by one central government that has supreme legitimat ...
in May 2007. Belfast has approximately of sewers, which are currently being replaced in a project costing over £100 million and due for completion in 2009. Power is provided from a number of
power stations A power station, also referred to as a power plant and sometimes generating station or generating plant, is an industrial facility for the electricity generation, generation of electric power. Power stations are generally connected to an el ...
via NIE Networks Limited transmission lines. Phoenix Natural Gas Ltd. started supplying customers in Larne and Greater Belfast with natural gas in 1996 via the newly constructed Scotland-Northern Ireland pipeline. Rates in Belfast (and the rest of Northern Ireland) were reformed in April 2007. The discrete
capital Capital may refer to: Common uses * Capital city, a municipality of primary status ** List of national capitals, List of national capital cities * Capital letter, an upper-case letter Economics and social sciences * Capital (economics), the dura ...
value system means rates bills are determined by the capital value of each domestic property as assessed by the ''Valuation and Lands Agency''. The recent dramatic rise in house prices has made these reforms unpopular.


Health care

The Belfast Health & Social Care Trust is one of five trusts that were created on 1 April 2007 by the
Department of Health A health department or health ministry is a part of government which focuses on issues related to the general health of the citizenry. Subnational entity, Subnational entities, such as State (administrative division), states, county, counties an ...
. Belfast contains most of Northern Ireland's regional specialist centres. The Royal Victoria Hospital is an internationally renowned centre of excellence in trauma care and provides specialist trauma care for all of Northern Ireland. It also provides the city's specialist neurosurgical,
ophthalmology Ophthalmology ( ) is a surgery, surgical subspecialty within medicine that deals with the diagnosis and treatment of eye disorders. An ophthalmologist is a physician who undergoes subspecialty training in medical and surgical eye care. Followin ...
, ENT, and
dentistry Dentistry, also known as dental medicine and oral medicine, is the branch of medicine focused on the Human tooth, teeth, gums, and Human mouth, mouth. It consists of the study, diagnosis, prevention, management, and treatment of diseases, dis ...
services. The Belfast City Hospital is the regional specialist centre for haematology and is home to a cancer centre that rivals the best in the world. The Mary G McGeown Regional Nephrology Unit at the City Hospital is the kidney transplant centre and provides regional renal services for Northern Ireland. Musgrave Park Hospital in south Belfast specialises in
orthopaedics Orthopedic surgery or orthopedics ( alternatively spelt orthopaedics), is the branch of surgery Surgery ''cheirourgikē'' (composed of χείρ, "hand", and ἔργον, "work"), via la, chirurgiae, meaning "hand work". is a medical specia ...
,
rheumatology Rheumatology (Greek ''ῥεῦμα'', ''rheûma'', flowing current) is a branch of medicine devoted to the diagnosis and management of disorders whose common feature is inflammation in the bones, muscles, joints, and internal organs. Rheumatolog ...
,
sports medicine Sports medicine is a branch of medicine that deals with physical fitness and the treatment and prevention of injuries related to sports and exercise. Although most sports teams have employed team physicians for many years, it is only since the ...
and rehabilitation. It is home to Northern Ireland's first Acquired Brain Injury Unit, costing £9 million and opened by
Charles, Prince of Wales Charles III (Charles Philip Arthur George; born 14 November 1948) is King of the United Kingdom and the 14 other Commonwealth realms. He was the longest-serving heir apparent and Prince of Wales and, at age 73, became the oldest person to a ...
and
Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall Camilla (born Camilla Rosemary Shand, later Parker Bowles, 17 July 1947) is List of British royal consorts, Queen Consort of the United Kingdom and the 14 other Commonwealth realms as the wife of King Charles III. She became queen consort on ...
in May 2006. Other hospitals in Belfast include the Mater Hospital in north Belfast and the
Children's Hospital A children's hospital is a hospital that offers its services exclusively to infants, children, adolescents, and Youth, young adults. In certain special cases, they may also treat adults. The number of children's hospitals proliferated in the 2 ...
.


Transport

Belfast is a relatively car-dependent city by European standards, with an extensive road network including the M2 and M22 motorway route. A 2005 survey of how people travel in Northern Ireland showed that people in Belfast made 77% of all journeys by car, 11% by public transport and 6% on foot. It showed that Belfast has 0.70 cars per household compared to figures of 1.18 in the East and 1.14 in the West of Northern Ireland. A road improvement-scheme in Belfast began early in 2006, with the upgrading of two junctions along the Westlink dual-carriageway to
grade-separated In civil engineering (more specifically highway engineering), grade separation is a method of aligning a junction (traffic), junction of two or more surface transport axes at different heights (grades) so that they will not disrupt the traffi ...
standard. The improvement scheme was completed five months ahead of schedule in February 2009, with the official opening taking place on 4 March 2009. On 25 October 2012 the stage 2 report for the York Street intersection was approved and in December 2012 the planned upgrade moved into stage 3 of the development process. If successfully completing the necessary statutory procedures, work on a grade separated junction to connect the Westlink to the M2/M3 motorways is scheduled to take place between 2014 and 2018, creating a continuous link between the M1 and M2, the two main motorways in Northern Ireland. Black taxis are common in the city, operating on a share basis in some areas. These are outnumbered by private hire taxis. Bus and rail public transport in Northern Ireland is operated by subsidiaries of Translink. Bus services in the city proper and the nearer suburbs are operated by Translink Metro, with services focusing on linking residential districts with the city centre on 12 quality bus corridors running along main radial roads, More distant suburbs are served by
Ulsterbus Ulsterbus is a public transport operator in Northern Ireland and operates bus services outside Belfast. It is part of Translink (Northern Ireland), Translink, the brand name for the subsidiary operating companies of the Northern Ireland Transpor ...
. Northern Ireland Railways provides suburban services along three lines running through Belfast's northern suburbs to
Carrickfergus Carrickfergus ( , meaning "Fergus Mór mac Eirc, Fergus' rock") is a large town in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It sits on the north shore of Belfast Lough, from Belfast. The town had a population of 27,998 at the United Kingdom Census 2 ...
,
Larne Larne (, , the name of a Gaelic Ireland, Gaelic territory) is a town on the east coast of County Antrim, Northern Ireland, with a population of 18,755 at the United Kingdom census, 2011, 2011 Census. It is a major passenger and freight Roll-on/ro ...
and Larne Harbour, eastwards towards Bangor and south-westwards towards
Lisburn Lisburn (; ) is a city in Northern Ireland. It is southwest of Belfast city centre, on the River Lagan, which forms the boundary between County Antrim and County Down. First laid out in the 17th century by English and Welsh settlers, with th ...
and
Portadown Portadown () is a town in County Armagh, Northern Ireland. The town sits on the River Bann in the north of the county, about southwest of Belfast. It is in the Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council area and had a population of a ...
. This service is known as the Belfast Suburban Rail system. Belfast is linked directly to
Coleraine Coleraine ( ; from ga, Cúil Rathain , 'nook of the fern A fern (Polypodiopsida or Polypodiophyta ) is a member of a group of vascular plants (plants with xylem and phloem) that reproduce via spores and have neither seeds nor flowers ...
,
Portrush Portrush () is a small seaside resort town on the north coast of County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It neighbours the resort of Portstewart. The main part of the old town, including the Portrush railway station, railway station as well as most hote ...
and
Derry Derry, officially Londonderry (), is the second-largest City status in the United Kingdom, city in Northern Ireland and the fifth-largest city on the island of Ireland. The name ''Derry'' is an anglicisation of the Old Irish name (modern ...
. Belfast has a direct rail connection with
Dublin Dublin (; , or ) is the capital and largest city of Republic of Ireland, Ireland. On a bay at the mouth of the River Liffey, it is in the Provinces of Ireland, province of Leinster, bordered on the south by the Dublin Mountains, a part of th ...

Dublin
called '' Enterprise'' which is operated jointly by NIR and Iarnród Éireann, the state railway company of the
Republic of Ireland Ireland ( ga, Éire ), also known as the Republic of Ireland (), is a country in north-western Europe consisting of 26 of the 32 Counties of Ireland, counties of the island of Ireland. The capital and largest city is Dublin, on the eastern ...
. There are no rail services to cities in other countries of the United Kingdom, due to the lack of a bridge or tunnel connecting
Great Britain Great Britain is an island in the North Atlantic Ocean off the northwest coast of continental Europe. With an area of , it is the largest of the British Isles, the List of European islands by area, largest European island and the List of is ...
to the island of
Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots: ) is an island in the Atlantic Ocean, North Atlantic Ocean, in Northwestern Europe, north-western Europe. It is separated from Great Britain to its east by the North Channel (Grea ...

Ireland
. There is, however, a combined ferry and rail ticket between Belfast and cities in Great Britain, which is referred to as SailRail. In April 2008, the Department for Regional Development reported on a plan for a light-rail system, similar to that in Dublin. The consultants said Belfast does not have the population to support a light rail system, suggesting that investment in bus-based rapid transit would be preferable. The study found that bus-based rapid transit produces positive economic results, but light rail does not. The report by Atkins & KPMG, however, said there would be the option of migrating to light rail in the future should the demand increase. The city has two airports: Belfast International Airport offering, domestic, European and international flights such as Orlando operated seasonally by
Virgin Atlantic Virgin Atlantic, a trade name, trading name of Virgin Atlantic Airways Limited and Virgin Atlantic International Limited, is a British airline with its head office in Crawley, England. The airline was established in 1984 as British Atlantic Ai ...
. The airport is located northwest of the city, near Lough Neagh, while the George Best Belfast City Airport, which is closer to the city centre by train from Sydenham on the Bangor Line, adjacent to Belfast Lough, offers UK domestic flights and a few European flights. In 2005, Belfast International Airport was the 11th busiest commercial airport in the UK, accounting for just over 2% of all UK terminal passengers while the George Best Belfast City Airport was the 16th busiest and had 1% of UK terminal passengers. The Belfast – Liverpool route is the busiest domestic flight route in the UK excluding London with 555,224 passengers in 2009. Over 2.2 million passengers flew between Belfast and London in 2009. Belfast has a large
port A port is a maritime law, maritime facility comprising one or more Wharf, wharves or loading areas, where ships load and discharge Affreightment, cargo and passengers. Although usually situated on a sea coast or estuary, ports can a ...
used for exporting and importing goods, and for passenger ferry services.
Stena Line Stena Line is a Sweden, Swedish Shipping line, shipping line company and one of the largest ferry operators in the world. It services Denmark, Germany, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Latvia, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland and Sweden. Stena Line ...
runs regular routes to
Cairnryan Cairnryan ( sco, The Cairn;
gd, Machair an Sgithich) is a vi ...
in Scotland using its conventional vessels—with a crossing time of around 2 hours 15 minutes. Until 2011 the route went to
Stranraer Stranraer ( , in Scotland also ; gd, An t-Sròn Reamhar ), also known as The Toon, is a town in Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland. It is located in the historical parish of Inch, Dumfries and Galloway, Inch in the historic county of Wigtownshir ...
and used inter alia a HSS (High Speed Service) vessel—with a crossing time of around 90 minutes. Stena Line also operates a route to
Liverpool Liverpool is a City status in the United Kingdom, city and metropolitan borough in Merseyside, England. With a population of in 2019, it is the List of English districts by population, 10th largest English district by population and its E ...
. A seasonal sailing to
Douglas, Isle of Man Douglas ( gv, Doolish, ) is the Capital (political), capital and largest town of the Isle of Man, with a population of 26,677 (2021). It is located at the mouth of the River Douglas, Isle of Man, River Douglas, and on a sweeping bay of . The ...
is operated by the
Isle of Man Steam Packet Company An isle is an island, land surrounded by water. The term is very common in British English. However, there is no clear agreement on what makes an island an isle or its difference, so they are considered synonyms. Isle may refer to: Geography * Is ...
. The
Glider Glider may refer to: Aircraft and transport Aircraft * Glider (aircraft), heavier-than-air aircraft primarily intended for unpowered flight ** Glider (sailplane), a rigid-winged glider aircraft with an undercarriage, used in the sport of gliding ...
bus service is a new form of transport in Belfast. Introduced in 2018, it is a
bus rapid transit Bus rapid transit (BRT), also called a busway or transitway, is a Public transport bus service, bus-based public transport system designed to have much more Route capacity, capacity, On-time performance, reliability and other quality features t ...
system linking East Belfast, West Belfast and the Titanic Quarter from the City Centre. Using
articulated buses An articulated bus, also referred to as a banana bus, bendy bus, tandem bus, vestibule bus, wiggle wagon, stretch bus, or an accordion bus, (either a motor bus or trolleybus) is an articulated vehicle used in public transportation. It is usua ...
, the £90 million service saw a 17% increase in its first month in Belfast, with 30,000 more people using the Gliders every week. The service is being recognised as helping to modernise the city's public transport. National Cycle Route 9 to
Newry Newry (; ) is a City status in Ireland, city in Northern Ireland, divided by the Newry River, Clanrye river in counties County Armagh, Armagh and County Down, Down, from Belfast and from Dublin. It had a population of 26,967 in 2011. Newry ...
, which will eventually connect with Dublin, starts in Belfast.


Culture

Belfast's population is evenly split between its Protestant and Catholic residents. These two distinct cultural communities have both contributed significantly to the city's culture. Throughout the Troubles, Belfast artists continued to express themselves through poetry, art and music. In the period since the
Good Friday Agreement The Good Friday Agreement (GFA), or Belfast Agreement ( ga, Comhaontú Aoine an Chéasta or ; Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster-Scots: or ), is a pair of agreements signed on 10 April 1998 that ended most of the violence of The Troubles, a po ...
in 1998, Belfast has begun a social, economic and cultural transformation giving it a growing international cultural reputation. In 2003, Belfast had an unsuccessful bid for the 2008 European Capital of Culture. The bid was run by an independent company, ''Imagine Belfast'', who boasted that it would "make Belfast the meeting place of Europe's legends, where the meaning of history and belief find a home and a sanctuary from caricature, parody and oblivion." According to ''
The Guardian ''The Guardian'' is a British daily newspaper. It was founded in 1821 as ''The Manchester Guardian'', and changed its name in 1959. Along with its sister papers ''The Observer'' and ''The Guardian Weekly'', ''The Guardian'' is part of the Gu ...
'' the bid may have been undermined by the city's history and volatile politics. In 2004–05, art and cultural events in Belfast were attended by 1.8 million people (400,000 more than the previous year). The same year, 80,000 people participated in culture and other arts activities, twice as many as in 2003–04. A combination of relative peace, international investment and an active promotion of arts and culture is attracting more tourists to Belfast than ever before. In 2004–05, 5.9 million people visited Belfast, a 10% increase from the previous year, and spent £262.5 million. The Ulster Orchestra, based in Belfast, is Northern Ireland's only full-time
symphony orchestra An orchestra (; ) is a large Musical ensemble, instrumental ensemble typical of classical music, which combines instruments from different families. There are typically four main sections of instruments: * bowed string instruments, such as the ...
and is well renowned in the United Kingdom. Founded in 1966, it has existed in its present form since 1981, when the
BBC Northern Ireland BBC Northern Ireland ( ga, BBC Thuaisceart Éireann; Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster-Scots: ''BBC Norlin Airlan'') is a division of the BBC and the main public broadcasting, public broadcaster in Northern Ireland. It is widely available across bo ...
Orchestra was disbanded. The music school of Queen's University is responsible for arranging a notable series of lunchtime and evening concerts, often given by renowned musicians which are usually given in The Harty Room at the university (University Square). Musicians and bands who have written songs about or dedicated to Belfast include U2,
Van Morrison Sir George Ivan Morrison (born 31 August 1945), known professionally as Van Morrison, is a Northern Irish singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist whose recording career spans seven decades. He has won two Grammy Awards. As a teenager in t ...
,
Snow Patrol Snow Patrol are a Northern Irish–Scottish Rock music, rock band formed in 1994 in Dundee, Scotland. They consist of Gary Lightbody (vocals, guitar), Nathan Connolly (guitar, backing vocals), Paul Wilson (musician), Paul Wilson (bass guitar, ...
,
Simple Minds Simple Minds are a Scottish rock band formed in Glasgow Glasgow ( ; sco, Glesca or ; gd, Glaschu ) is the most populous city A city is a human settlement of notable size.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geog ...
,
Elton John Sir Elton Hercules John (born Reginald Kenneth Dwight; 25 March 1947) is a British singer, pianist and composer. Commonly nicknamed the "Rocket Man" after Rocket Man (song), his 1972 hit single of the same name, John has led a commercially s ...
, Rogue Male, Katie Melua, Boney M, Paul Muldoon,
Stiff Little Fingers Stiff Little Fingers are a punk rock band from Belfast, Northern Ireland. They formed in 1977 at the height of the Troubles, which informed much of their songwriting. They started out as a schoolboy band called Highway Star (named after the Dee ...
,
Nanci Griffith Nanci Caroline Griffith (July 6, 1953 – August 13, 2021) was an American singer, guitarist, and songwriter. She appeared many times on the PBS music program ''Austin City Limits'' starting in 1985 (season 10). In 1994 she won a Grammy Award fo ...
, Glenn Patterson, Orbital,
James Taylor James Vernon Taylor (born March 12, 1948) is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist. A six-time Grammy Award winner, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2000. He is one of the List of best-selling music artists, best-sell ...
, Fun Boy Three,
Spandau Ballet Spandau Ballet () were an English New wave music, new wave band formed in Islington, London, in 1979. Inspired by the capital's post-punk underground dance scene, they emerged at the start of the 1980s as the house band for the Blitz Kids, playi ...
,
The Police The Police were an English rock music, rock band formed in London in 1977. For most of their history the line-up consisted of primary songwriter Sting (musician), Sting (lead vocals, bass guitar), Andy Summers (guitar) and Stewart Copeland (dr ...
, Barnbrack, Gary Moore, Neon Neon, Toxic Waste, Energy Orchard, and
Billy Bragg Stephen William Bragg (born 20 December 1957) is an English singer-songwriter and left-wing politics, left-wing activist. His music blends elements of folk music, punk rock and protest songs, with lyrics that mostly span political or romantic t ...
. Belfast has a longstanding underground club scene which was established in the early 1980s. Belfast has a high concentration of Irish-speakers. Like all areas of the island of Ireland outside of the
Gaeltacht ( , , ) are the districts of Ireland, individually or collectively, where the Irish government recognises that the Irish language is the predominant vernacular, or language of the home. The ''Gaeltacht'' districts were first officially recog ...
, the Irish language in Belfast is not that of an unbroken intergenerational transmission. However, the establishment of the Shaw's Road Gaeltacht community has inspired use of the language across Northern Ireland. The language is heavily promoted in the city and is particularly visible in the Falls Road area, where the signs on both the iconic black taxis and on the public buses are bilingual. Projects to promote the language in the city are funded by various sources, notably
Foras na Gaeilge (, "Irish language, Irish Institute"; ) is a public body responsible for the promotion of the Irish language throughout the island of Ireland, including both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. It was set up on 2 December 1999, as ...
, an all-Ireland body funded by both the Irish and British governments. There are a number of Irish language Primary schools and one secondary school in Belfast. The provision of certain resources for these schools (for example, such as the provision of textbooks) is supported by the charitable organisation TACA. In late August 2018, at least three groups were vying for the right to purchase the 5,500
RMS Titanic RMS ''Titanic'' was a British passenger Ocean liner, liner, operated by the White Star Line, which Sinking of the Titanic, sank in the North Atlantic Ocean on 15 April 1912 after striking an iceberg during her maiden voyage from Southampton ...
relics that were an asset of the bankrupt
Premier Exhibitions Premier Exhibitions Inc is an Atlanta, Georgia Atlanta ( ) is the capital city, capital and List of municipalities in Georgia (U.S. state), most populous city of the U.S. state of Georgia (U.S. state), Georgia. It is the county seat, sea ...
. One of the offers was by a group including the
National Maritime Museum The National Maritime Museum (NMM) is a maritime museum in Greenwich, London. It is part of Royal Museums Greenwich, a network of museums in the Maritime Greenwich World Heritage Site. Like other publicly funded national museums in the United ...
and National Museums Northern Ireland, with assistance by
James Cameron James Francis Cameron (born August 16, 1954) is a Canadian filmmaker. A major figure in the post-New Hollywood era, he is considered one of the industry's most innovative filmmakers, regularly pushing the boundaries of cinematic capability w ...
. Oceanographer
Robert Ballard Robert Duane Ballard (born June 30, 1942) is an American retired Navy officer and a professor of oceanography at the University of Rhode Island who is most noted for his work in underwater archaeology: maritime archaeology and archaeology of ...
said he favored this bid since it would ensure that the memorabilia would be permanently displayed in Belfast (where the Titanic was built) and in
Greenwich Greenwich ( , ,) is a town in south-east London, England, within the Ceremonial counties of England, ceremonial county of Greater London. It is situated east-southeast of Charing Cross. Greenwich is notable for its maritime history and for ...
. A decision as to the outcome was to be made by a
United States district court The United States district courts are the trial courts of the United States federal judiciary, U.S. federal judiciary. There is one district court for each United States federal judicial district, federal judicial district, which each cover o ...
judge.


Media

Belfast is the home of the ''
Belfast Telegraph The ''Belfast Telegraph'' is a daily newspaper published in Belfast, Northern Ireland, by Independent News & Media. Its editor is Eoin Brannigan. Reflecting its Unionism in Ireland, unionist tradition, the paper has historically been "favoured b ...
'', ''
Irish News Irish may refer to: Common meanings * Someone or something of, from, or related to: ** Ireland, an island situated off the north-western coast of continental Europe ***Éire, Irish language name for the isle ** Northern Ireland, a constituent unit ...
'', and ''
The News Letter The ''News Letter'' is one of Northern Ireland's main daily newspapers, published from Monday to Saturday. It is the world's oldest English-language general daily newspaper still in publication, having first been printed in 1737. The newspape ...
'', the oldest
English-language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language of the Indo-European language family, with its earliest forms spoken by the inhabitants of early medieval England. It is named after the Angles, one of the ancient Germanic people ...
daily newspaper in the world still in publication. The Belfast Telegraph was bought by the Dublin-based
Independent News & Media Mediahuis Ireland (formally Independent News and Media (INM) )) is a media organisation that is based in Dublin and publishes national daily newspapers, Sunday newspapers, regional newspapers and operates multiple websites including Independent. ...
group in March 2000. The city is the headquarters of
BBC Northern Ireland BBC Northern Ireland ( ga, BBC Thuaisceart Éireann; Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster-Scots: ''BBC Norlin Airlan'') is a division of the BBC and the main public broadcasting, public broadcaster in Northern Ireland. It is widely available across bo ...
,
ITV ITV or iTV may refer to: ITV *Independent Television (ITV), a British television network, consisting of: **ITV (TV network) ITV is a British free-to-air public service broadcasting in the United Kingdom, public broadcast television network. ...
station UTV and commercial radio stations Q Radio and U105. Two community radio stations, Blast 106 and Irish-language station Raidió Fáilte, broadcast to the city from west Belfast, as does Queen's Radio, a student-run radio station which broadcasts from Queen's University Students' Union. One of Northern Ireland's two community TV stations, NvTv, is based in the Cathedral Quarter of the city. There are two independent cinemas in Belfast: the
Queen's Film Theatre The Queen's Film Theatre or QFT is an independent cinema at Queen's University Belfast Queen's University Belfast, officially The Queen's University of Belfast (commonly referred to as Queen's and QUB), is a Public university, public research un ...
and the Strand Cinema, which host screenings during the Belfast Film Festival and the
Belfast Festival at Queen's Belfast International Arts Festival, formerly known as Belfast Festival at Queen’s, claims to be the city’s longest running international arts event. Originally established in 1962, it was hosted by Queen’s University until 2015, after whi ...
. Broadcasting only over the Internet is Homely Planet, the Cultural Radio Station for Northern Ireland, supporting community relations. The city has become a popular film location; The Paint Hall at Harland and Wolff has become one of the
UK Film Council The UK Film Council (UKFC) was a non-departmental public body set up in 2000 to develop and promote the film industry in the UK. It was constituted as a private company limited by guarantee, owned by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and ...
's main studios. The facility comprises four stages of . Shows filmed at The Paint Hall include the film '' City of Ember'' (2008) and
HBO Home Box Office (HBO) is an American premium television network, which is the flagship property of namesake parent subsidiary Home Box Office, Inc., itself a unit owned by Warner Bros. Discovery. The overall Home Box Office business unit is b ...
's ''
Game of Thrones ''Game of Thrones'' is an American Fantasy television, fantasy Drama (film and television), drama television series created by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss for HBO. It is an adaptation of ''A Song of Ice and Fire'', a series of fantasy ...
'' series (beginning in late 2009). In November 2011, Belfast became the smallest city to host the
MTV Europe Music Awards The MTV Europe Music Awards (originally named MTV European Music Awards, commonly abbreviated as MTV EMA) are awards presented by Paramount International Networks to honour artists and music in pop culture. It was originally conceived as an al ...
. The event was hosted by
Selena Gomez Selena Marie Gomez ( ; born July 22, 1992) is an American singer, actress and producer. Gomez began her acting career on the children's television series ''Barney & Friends'' (2002–2004). As a teenager, she rose to prominence for starring a ...
and celebrities such as
Justin Bieber Justin Drew Bieber ( ; born March 1, 1994) is a Canadian singer. Bieber is recognized for his genre-melding musicianship and has played an influential role in modern-day popular music. He was discovered by American record executive Scooter B ...
,
Jessie J Jessica Ellen Cornish (born 27 March 1988), known professionally as Jessie J, is an English singer. Born and raised in London, she began her career on stage, aged 11, with a role in the West End theatre, West End musical ''Whistle Down the Win ...
,
Hayden Panettiere Hayden Lesley Panettiere (; born August 21, 1989) is an American actress, model, and singer. She is best known for her lead roles as Claire Bennet on the NBC superhero A superhero or superheroine is a stock character that typically posse ...
, and
Lady Gaga Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta ( ; born March 28, 1986), known professionally as Lady Gaga, is an American singer, songwriter, and actress. She is known for her image reinventions and musical versatility. Gaga began performing as a teenag ...
travelled to Northern Ireland to attend the event, held in the Odyssey Arena.


Sports

Belfast has several notable sports teams playing a diverse variety of sports such as
football Football is a family of team sports that involve, to varying degrees, Kick (football), kicking a Football (ball), ball to score a Goal (sport), goal. Unqualified, Football (word), the word ''football'' normally means the form of football tha ...
,
Gaelic games Gaelic games ( ga, Cluichí Gaelacha) are a set of sports played worldwide, though they are particularly popular in Ireland Ireland ( ; ga, Éire ; Ulster Scots dialect, Ulster-Scots: ) is an island in the Atlantic Ocean, North Atla ...
, rugby,
cricket Cricket is a Bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two teams of eleven players on a cricket field, field at the centre of which is a cricket pitch, pitch with a wicket at each end, each comprising two Bail (cricket), bails b ...
, and
ice hockey Ice hockey (or simply hockey) is a team sport played on ice skates, usually on an Ice rink, ice skating rink with Ice hockey rink, lines and markings specific to the sport. It belongs to a family of sports called hockey. In ice hockey, two o ...
. The Belfast Marathon is run annually on May Day, and attracted 20,000 participants in 2011. The
Northern Ireland national football team The Northern Ireland national football team represents Northern Ireland in international association football. From 1882 to 1920, all of Ireland was represented by a single side, the Ireland national football team (1882–1950), Ireland natio ...
, ranked 59th as of October 2022 in the
FIFA World Rankings The FIFA Men's World Ranking is a ranking system for men's national teams in association football, led by Brazil national football team, Brazil . The teams of the List of men's national football teams, men's member nations of FIFA, football's w ...
, plays its home matches at
Windsor Park Windsor Park is a association football, football stadium in Belfast, Northern Ireland. It is the home ground of Linfield F.C. who own the land the stadium is built on, while the Irish Football Association own and operate the stadium and pay Li ...
. Football clubs active in Belfast include: Linfield, Glentoran,
Crusaders The Crusades were a series of religious wars initiated, supported, and sometimes directed by the Latin Church in the medieval period. The best known of these Crusades are those to the Holy Land in the period between 1095 and 1291 that were in ...
,
Cliftonville Cliftonville is a coastal area of the town of Margate, situated to the east of the main town, in the Thanet District, Thanet district of Kent, South East England, United Kingdom. It also contains the area known as Palm Bay, UK, Palm Bay. The ...
, Donegal Celtic, Harland & Wolff Welders, Dundela, Knockbreda, PSNI, Queen's University, Newington, Sport & Leisure and
Brantwood Brantwood is a historic house museum in Cumbria Cumbria ( ) is a ceremonial counties of England, ceremonial and non-metropolitan county in North West England, bordering Scotland. The county and Cumbria County Council, its local governmen ...
. Belfast was the home town of former
Manchester United Manchester () is a city in Greater Manchester, England. It had a population of 552,000 in 2021. It is bordered by the Cheshire Plain to the south, the Pennines to the north and east, and the neighbouring city of City of Salford, Salford to ...
player
George Best George Best (22 May 1946 – 25 November 2005) was a Northern Irish professional footballer who played as a winger, spending most of his club career at Manchester United Manchester () is a city in Greater Manchester, England. It had ...
, the 1968
European Footballer of the Year The Ballon d'Or (; ) is an annual association football, football award presented by French news magazine ''France Football'' since 1956. Between 2010 and 2015, in an agreement with FIFA, the award was temporarily merged with the FIFA World Pl ...
, who died in November 2005. On the day he was buried in the city, 100,000 people lined the route from his home on the Cregagh Road to Roselawn cemetery. Since his death the City Airport was named after him and a trust has been set up to fund a memorial to him in the city centre. Belfast is home to over twenty
Gaelic football Gaelic football ( ga, Peil Ghaelach; short name '), commonly known as simply Gaelic, GAA or Football is an Irish team sport. It is played between two teams of 15 players on a rectangular grass pitch. The objective of the sport is to score by kic ...
and
hurling Hurling ( ga, iománaíocht, ') is an outdoor Team sport, team game of ancient Gaelic culture, Gaelic Irish origin, played by men. One of Ireland's native Gaelic games, it shares a number of features with Gaelic football, such as the field ...
clubs. Casement Park in west Belfast, home to the Antrim county teams, has a capacity of 32,000 which makes it the second largest
Gaelic Athletic Association The Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA; ga, Cumann Lúthchleas Gael ; CLG) is an Irish international amateur sporting and cultural organisation, focused primarily on promoting indigenous Gaelic games and pastimes, which include the traditional ...
ground in
Ulster Ulster (; ga, Ulaidh or ''Cúige Uladh'' ; sco, label=Ulster Scots dialects, Ulster Scots, Ulstèr or ''Ulster'') is one of the four traditional provinces of Ireland, Irish provinces. It is made up of nine Counties of Ireland, counties: si ...
. In May 2020, the foundation of East Belfast GAA returned Gaelic Games to unionist East Belfast after decades of its absence in the area. The current club president is Irish-language enthusiast Linda Ervine who comes from a unionist background in the area. The team currently plays in the Down Senior County League. The 1999
Heineken Cup The European Rugby Champions Cup (known as the Heineken Champions Cup for sponsorship reasons) is an annual rugby union tournament organised by European Professional Club Rugby (EPCR). It is the top-tier competition for clubs who compete in a pre ...
champions
Ulster Rugby Ulster Rugby is one of the four professional provincial rugby union, rugby teams from the island of Ireland. They compete in the United Rugby Championship and the European Rugby Champions Cup. The team represents the Irish Rugby Football Unio ...
play at
Ravenhill Stadium Ravenhill Stadium (known as the Kingspan Stadium for sponsorship reasons) is a rugby stadium A stadium (plural, : stadiums or stadia) is a place or venue for (mostly) outdoor sports, concerts, or other events and consists of a field or ...
in the south of the city. Belfast has four teams in rugby's All-Ireland League:
Belfast Harlequins Belfast Harlequins is a multi-sports club located off the Malone Road in south Belfast Belfast ( , ; from ga, Béal Feirste , meaning 'mouth of the sand-bank ford') is the capital and largest city of Northern Ireland, standing on the b ...
in Division 1B; and Instonians, Queen's University and Malone in Division 2A. Belfast is home to the Stormont cricket ground since 1949 and was the venue for the Irish cricket team's first ever
One Day International A One Day International (ODI) is a form of limited overs cricket, played between two teams with international status, in which each team faces a fixed number of over (cricket), overs, currently 50, with the game lasting up to 9 hours. The Cr ...
against
England England is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to its west and Scotland to its north. The Irish Sea lies northwest and the Celtic Sea to the southwest. It is separa ...
in 2006. Belfast is home to one of the biggest
ice hockey Ice hockey (or simply hockey) is a team sport played on ice skates, usually on an Ice rink, ice skating rink with Ice hockey rink, lines and markings specific to the sport. It belongs to a family of sports called hockey. In ice hockey, two o ...
clubs in the United Kingdom, the
Belfast Giants The Belfast Giants (known officially as the Stena Line Belfast Giants due to sponsorship) are a professional ice hockey team based in Belfast, Northern Ireland. They compete in the UK's Elite Ice Hockey League, Elite Ice Hockey League (EIHL) a ...
. The Giants were founded in 2000 and play their games at the 9,500 capacity SSE Arena, where crowds normally range from 4,000 to 7,000. Many ex-NHL players have featured on the Giants roster, none more famous than world superstar Theo Fleury. The Giants play in the 10-team professional
Elite Ice Hockey League The Elite Ice Hockey League (EIHL), sometimes referred to as the British Elite League or, for sponsorship reasons, the Viaplay Elite League, is an ice hockey Ice hockey (or simply hockey) is a team sport played on ice skates, usually ...
which is the top league in the United Kingdom. The Giants have been league champions 6 times, most recently in the 2021–22 season. The
Belfast Giants The Belfast Giants (known officially as the Stena Line Belfast Giants due to sponsorship) are a professional ice hockey team based in Belfast, Northern Ireland. They compete in the UK's Elite Ice Hockey League, Elite Ice Hockey League (EIHL) a ...
are a huge brand in Northern Ireland and their increasing stature in the game led to the
Belfast Giants The Belfast Giants (known officially as the Stena Line Belfast Giants due to sponsorship) are a professional ice hockey team based in Belfast, Northern Ireland. They compete in the UK's Elite Ice Hockey League, Elite Ice Hockey League (EIHL) a ...
playing the
Boston Bruins The Boston Bruins are a professional ice hockey team based in Boston. The Bruins compete in the National Hockey League (NHL) as a member of the Atlantic Division (NHL), Atlantic Division in the Eastern Conference (NHL), Eastern Conference. The ...
of the
NHL The National Hockey League (NHL; french: Ligue nationale de hockey—LNH, ) is a professional ice hockey sports league, league in North America comprising 32 teams—25 in the United States and 7 in Canada. It is considered to be the top ranke ...
on 2 October 2010 at the SSE Arena in Belfast, losing the game 5–1. Other significant sportspeople from Belfast include double world snooker champion Alex "Hurricane" Higgins and world champion boxers Wayne McCullough, Rinty Monaghan and Carl Frampton. Leander ASC is a well known swimming club in Belfast. Belfast produced the Formula One racing stars John Watson who raced for five different teams during his career in the 1970s and 1980s and Ferrari driver
Eddie Irvine Edmund Irvine Jr. (; born 10 November 1965) is a former racing driver from Northern Ireland. He competed in Formula One between 1993 Formula One season, 1993 and 2002 Formula One season, 2002, and finished runner-up in the 1999 Formula One sea ...
.


Notable people

Academia and science *
John Stewart Bell John Stewart Bell Fellow of the Royal Society, FRS (28 July 1928 – 1 October 1990) was a physicist from Northern Ireland and the originator of Bell's theorem, an important theorem in quantum mechanics, quantum physics regarding hidden-variab ...
, physicist * Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell, astrophysicist *
John Boyd Dunlop John Boyd Dunlop (5 February 1840 – 23 October 1921) was a Scottish-born inventor and veterinary surgeon who spent most of his career in Ireland. Familiar with making Natural rubber, rubber devices, he invented the first practical Tire, pneu ...
, inventor *
Lord Kelvin William Thomson, 1st Baron Kelvin, (26 June 182417 December 1907) was a British mathematician, Mathematical physics, mathematical physicist and engineer born in Belfast. Professor of Natural Philosophy (Glasgow), Professor of Natural Philoso ...
, physicist and engineer Arts and media * Anthony Boyle, actor * Sir Kenneth Branagh, actor * Gordon Burns, journalist, gameshow host, best known for The Krypton Factor * Ciaran Carson, writer * Frank Carson, comedian * Jamie Dornan, actor * Barry Douglas, musician * Candida Doyle, musician *
James Galway Sir James Galway (born 8 December 1939) is an Irish virtuoso flute player from Belfast, nicknamed "The Man with the Golden Flute". He established an international career as a solo flutist, flute player. In 2005, he received the Brit Award for ...
, musician * Ciarán Hinds, actor *
Eamonn Holmes Eamonn Holmes (; born 3 December 1959)Holmes receives honorary degree
BBC ...
, broadcaster *
Brian Desmond Hurst Brian Desmond Hurst (12 February 1895 – 26 September 1986) was a Belfast-born film director. With over thirty films in his filmography, Hurst has been hailed as Northern Ireland's best film director.Screening will honour 'NI's best film ...
, film director *
Oliver Jeffers Oliver Brendan Jeffers (born 1977) is a Northern Irish people, Northern Irish artist, illustrator and writer who now lives and works in Brooklyn. He went to the integrated secondary school Hazelwood College, then graduated from the Universit ...
, artist * C. S. Lewis, author * Paula Malcomson, actress * Gerry McAvoy, musician and long time bass guitarist with Rory Gallagher * Brian Moore, acclaimed novelist * Gary Moore, guitarist *
Van Morrison Sir George Ivan Morrison (born 31 August 1945), known professionally as Van Morrison, is a Northern Irish singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist whose recording career spans seven decades. He has won two Grammy Awards. As a teenager in t ...
, singer-songwriter * Doc Neeson, singer-songwriter * Patricia Quinn, actress * Roy Walker (comedian), gameshow host, best known for
Catchphrase A catchphrase (alternatively spelled catch phrase) is a phrase or expression recognized by its repeated utterance. Such phrases often originate in popular culture Popular culture (also called mass culture or pop culture) is generally recogni ...
Politics *
Gerry Adams Gerard Adams ( ga, Gearóid Mac Ádhaimh; born 6 October 1948) is an Irish republican politician who was the president of Sinn Féin between 13 November 1983 and 10 February 2018, and served as a Teachta Dála (TD) for Louth (Dáil constituency ...
. politician * Lord Craigavon, former Prime Minister of Northern Ireland *
Abba Eban Abba Solomon Meir Eban (; he, אבא אבן ; born Aubrey Solomon Meir Eban; 2 February 1915 – 17 November 2002) was an Israeli diplomat and politician, and a scholar of the Arabic and Hebrew languages. During his career, he served as For ...
(1915–2002), Israeli diplomat and politician, and President of the
Weizmann Institute of Science The Weizmann Institute of Science ( he, מכון ויצמן למדע ''Machon Vaitzman LeMada'') is a Public university, public research university in Rehovot, Israel, established in 1934, 14 years before the State of Israel. It differs from o ...
*
Chaim Herzog Major-General Chaim Herzog ( he, חיים הרצוג; 17 September 1918 – 17 April 1997) was an Irish-born Israeli politician, general, lawyer and author who served as the sixth President of Israel between 1983 and 1993. Born in Belfast ...
, former
President of Israel The president of the State of Israel ( he, נְשִׂיא מְדִינַת יִשְׂרָאֵל, Nesi Medinat Yisra'el, or he, נְשִׂיא הַמְדִינָה, Nesi HaMedina, President of the State) is the head of state of Israel ...
*
Mary McAleese Mary Patricia McAleese ( ; ga, Máire Pádraigín Mhic Ghiolla Íosa; ; born 27 June 1951) is an Irish activist lawyer and former politician who served as the eighth president of Ireland from November 1997 to November 2011. She is an academic ...
, former
President of Ireland The president of Ireland ( ga, Uachtarán na hÉireann) is the head of state of Republic of Ireland, Ireland and the supreme commander of the Defence Forces (Ireland), Irish Defence Forces. The president holds office for seven years, and can ...
* Peter Robinson, former
First Minister of Northern Ireland The First Minister and deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland are the joint head of government, heads of government of the Northern Ireland Executive and have overall responsibility for the running of the Executive Office (Northern Ireland), Ex ...
* Lord Trimble, former First Minister of Northern Ireland,
Nobel Peace Prize The Nobel Peace Prize is one of the five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Swedish industrialist, inventor and armaments (military weapons and equipment) manufacturer Alfred Nobel, along with the prizes in Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Chemi ...
winner Sports * Paddy Barnes, boxer,
Olympic Games The modern Olympic Games or Olympics (french: link=no, Jeux olympiques) are the leading international sporting events featuring summer and winter sports competitions in which thousands of athletes from around the world participate in a var ...
Bronze Medalist *
George Best George Best (22 May 1946 – 25 November 2005) was a Northern Irish professional footballer who played as a winger, spending most of his club career at Manchester United Manchester () is a city in Greater Manchester, England. It had ...
, football player,
Ballon D'or The Ballon d'Or (; ) is an annual football Football is a family of team sports that involve, to varying degrees, Kick (football), kicking a Football (ball), ball to score a Goal (sport), goal. Unqualified, Football (word), the word '' ...
winner * Danny Blanchflower, football player and manager * Jackie Blanchflower, football player * Chris Brunt, football player * Ryan Burnett, boxer *
Anthony Cacace Anthony Cacace (born 2 February 1989) is an Irish professional boxer. He has held the British Boxing Board of Control, British super-featherweight title since 2019 and the List of IBO world champions#Super featherweight, IBO super-featherweight ...
, boxer * Craig Cathcart, football player * Michael Conlan, boxer * P. J. Conlon, baseball player * Killian Dain, professional wrestler * Mal Donaghy, football player * Corry Evans, football player *
Jonny Evans Jonathan Grant Evans (born 3 January 1988) is a Northern Irish professional Association football, footballer who plays as a Defender (association football), defender for club Leicester City F.C., Leicester City and the Northern Ireland natio ...
, football player * Dave Finlay, professional wrestler * Carl Frampton, boxer * Craig Gilroy, rugby union player * Alex Higgins, snooker player * Paddy Jackson, rugby union player * Wayne McCullough, WBC World Champion Boxer,
Olympic Games The modern Olympic Games or Olympics (french: link=no, Jeux olympiques) are the leading international sporting events featuring summer and winter sports competitions in which thousands of athletes from around the world participate in a var ...
Silver Medalist * Alan McDonald (association football), Alan McDonald, football player * Rory McIlroy, golfer * Sammy McIlroy, football player and manager * Eamon Magee, boxer * Brian Magee, boxer * Jim Magilton, football player and manager * Rinty Monaghan, World Flyweight boxing champion * Steve Morrow, football player and manager * Owen Nolan, hockey player, Olympic gold medalist * Mary Peters (athlete), Lady Mary Peters, Olympic gold medalist athlete * Tommy Robb (motorcyclist), Tommy Robb, Grand Prix motorcycle racing, Grand Prix motorcycle road racer * Anton Rogan, Football player * Pat Rice, football player and coach * Joe Swail, snooker player * Gary Wilson (cricketer), Gary Wilson, cricketer Other * Patrick Carlin, Victoria Cross recipient * Shaw Clifton, former General of The Salvation Army * Rotha Johnston, Dame Rotha Johnston, entrepreneur * James Joseph Magennis, Victoria Cross recipient * Jonathan Simms, victim of variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (vCJD), noted for unprecedented survival rate of a decade with the disease * Rosemary Church, newsanchor


Education

Belfast has two universities.
Queen's University Belfast Queen's University Belfast, officially The Queen's University of Belfast (commonly referred to as Queen's and QUB), is a Public university, public research university in Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom. The university received its charter ...
was founded in 1845 and is a member of the Russell Group, an association of 24 leading research-intensive universities in the UK. It is one of the largest universities in the UK with 25,231 undergraduate and postgraduate students spread over 250 buildings, 120 of which are listed as being of architectural merit.
Ulster University sco, Ulstèr Universitie , image = Ulster University coat of arms.png , caption = , motto_lang = , mottoeng = , latin_name = Universitas Ulidiae , established = 1865 – Magee College 1953 - Magee Un ...
, created in its current form in 1984, is a multi-centre university with a campus in the Cathedral Quarter of Belfast. The Belfast campus has a specific focus on Art and Design and Architecture, and is currently undergoing major redevelopment. The Jordanstown campus, just from Belfast city centre concentrates on engineering, health and social science. The Coleraine campus, about from Belfast city centre concentrates on a broad range of subjects. Course provision is broad – biomedical sciences, environmental science and geography, psychology, business, the humanities and languages, film and journalism, travel and tourism, teacher training and computing are among the campus strengths. The Magee College, Magee campus, about from Belfast city centre has many teaching strengths; including business, computing, creative technologies, nursing, Irish language and literature, social sciences, law, psychology, peace and conflict studies and the performing arts. The Conflict Archive on the Internet (CAIN) Web Service receives funding from both universities and is a rich source of information and source material on the Troubles as well as society and politics in Northern Ireland. Belfast Metropolitan College is a large further education college with three main campuses around the city, including several smaller buildings. Formerly known as Belfast Institute of Further and Higher Education, it specialises in vocational education. The college has over 53,000 students enrolled on full-time and part-time courses, making it one of the largest further education colleges in the UK and the largest in the island of Ireland. The Belfast Education and Library Board was established in 1973 as the local council responsible for education, youth and library services within the city. In 2006, this board became part of the Education Authority for Northern Ireland. There are 184 primary, secondary and Grammar school, grammar schools in the city.


Tourism

Belfast is one of the most visited cities in the UK, and the second most visited on the island of Ireland. In 2008, 7.1 million tourists visited the city. Numerous tour bus companies and boat tours run there throughout the year, including tours based on the series
Game of Thrones ''Game of Thrones'' is an American Fantasy television, fantasy Drama (film and television), drama television series created by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss for HBO. It is an adaptation of ''A Song of Ice and Fire'', a series of fantasy ...
, which has had various filming locations around Northern Ireland. Frommer's, the American travel guidebook series, listed Belfast as the only United Kingdom destination in its ''Top 12 Destinations to Visit'' in 2009. The other listed destinations were Berlin, Germany, Berlin (Germany), Cambodia, Cape Town (South Africa), Cartagena, Colombia, Cartagena (Colombia), Istanbul (Turkey), the Lassen Volcanic National Park (US), Saqqara (Egypt), the Selma To Montgomery National Historic Trail (US), Waiheke Island (New Zealand), Washington, D.C. (US), and Waterton Lakes National Park (Canada). Belfast City Council is currently investing into the complete redevelopment of the Titanic Quarter, which is planned to consist of apartments, hotels, and a riverside entertainment district. A major visitor attraction, Titanic Belfast is a monument to Belfast's maritime heritage on the site of the former Harland & Wolff shipyard, opened on 31 March 2012. It features a criss-cross of escalators and suspended walkways and nine high-tech galleries. They also hope to invest in a new modern transport system (including high-speed rail and others) for Belfast, with a cost of £250 million. In 2018, six hotels were opened, with the biggest in Northern Ireland, the £53 million Grand Central Hotel Belfast officially open to the public. The other hotels included AC Marriot, Hampton By Hilton, EasyHotel, Maldron Belfast City Centre and Flint. The new hotels have helped to increase a further 1,000 bedrooms in the city. Belfast was successful in attracting many conferencing events, both national and international, to the city in 2018. Over 60 conferences took place that year with 30,000 people helping contribute to a record 45 million pounds for the local economy. There is a tourist information centre located at Donegall Square, Donegall Square North.


Twin towns – sister cities

Belfast City Council takes part in the Twin towns and sister cities, twinning scheme, and is twinned with the following sister cities: * Nashville, Tennessee, United States (since 1994) * Hefei, Anhui, Anhui Province, China (since 2005) * Boston, Massachusetts, United States (since 2014) * Shenyang, Liaoning, Liaoning Province, China (since 2016)


Freedom of the City

The following people and military units have received the Freedom of the City of Belfast.


Individuals

* Kenneth Branagh, Sir Kenneth Branagh: 30 January 2018. *Andrew Carnegie: 28 September 1910. *Winston Churchill, Rt Hon Sir Winston Churchill : 16 December 1955. *Bill Clinton, 9 April 2018 * John Jordan (diplomat), Rt Hon Sir John Jordan : 28 September 1910. * George J. Mitchell, 9 April 2018 * Mary Peters (athlete), Lady Mary Peters : 2 November 2012. *William Pirrie, 1st Viscount Pirrie: 1898, the first person to be awarded Freedom Of The City of Belfast.


Military units

* The Royal Ulster Rifles: 6 February 1954. * The Royal Sussex Regiment: 1961.


Notes


References


Further reading

* Beesley, S. and Wilde, J. 1997. ''Urban Flora of Belfast''. Institute of Irish Studies & The Queen's University of Belfast. * Deane, C. Douglas. 1983. ''The Ulster Countryside.'' Century Books. * Gillespie, R. 2007. ''Early Belfast.'' Belfast Natural History & Philosophical Society in Association with Ulster Historical Foundation. . * Nesbitt, Noel. 1982. ''The Changing Face of Belfast.'' Ulster Museum, Belfast. Publication no. 183. * Pollock, V. and Parkhill, T. 1997. ''Belfast''. National Museums of Northern Ireland. * Scott, Robert. 2004. ''Wild Belfast: On Safari in the City.'' Blackstaff Press. . * Walker, B.M. and Dixon, H. 1984. ''Early Photographs from the Lawrence Collection in Belfast Town 1864–1880.'' The Friar's Bush Press, * Walker, B.M. and Dixon, H. 1983. ''No Mean City: Belfast 1880–1914.'' . * Connolly, S.J. Ed. 2012. Belfast 400 People Places and History. Liverpool University Press. * McCracken, E. 1971. ''The Palm House and Botanic Garden, Belfast''. Ulster Architectural Heritage Society. * McMahon, Sean. 2011. ''A Brief History of Belfast.'' The Brehon Press. Belfast. * Fulton, C. 2011. ''Coalbricks and Prefabs, Glimpses of Belfast in the 1950s.'' Thedoc Press. * O'Reilly, D. 2010. " Rivers of Belfast". Colourpoint Books. * Weatherall, Norman (text) and Evans, David (paintings) 2002 ''South Belfast Terrace and Villa.'' Cottage Publications


External links


Belfast City Council
{{Authority control Belfast, Capital cities in the United Kingdom Cities in Northern Ireland Districts of Northern Ireland, 1972–2015 Districts of Northern Ireland, 2015-present Populated coastal places in the United Kingdom Port cities and towns in Northern Ireland Port cities and towns of the Irish Sea