The site now occupied by Belfast City Hall was once the home of the White Linen Hall, an important international Linen Exchange. Plans for the City Hall began in 1888 when Belfast was awarded city status by Queen Victoria. This was in recognition of Belfast's rapid expansion and thriving linen, rope-making, shipbuilding and engineering industries.

Construction began in 1898 under the supervision of architect Sir Alfred Brumwell Thomas and was completed in 1906. Belfast Corporation, now the council, its their profits from the gas industry to pay for the construction of the Belfast City Hall.

The exterior is built mainly from Portland stone and is in the Baroque Revival style. It covers an area of one and a half acres and has an enclosed courtyard. Featuring towers at each of the four corners, with a lantern-crowned 53 m copper dome in the centre, the City Hall dominates the city centre skyline. As with other Victorian buildings in the city centre, the City Hall's copper-coated domes are a distinctive green.

The Titanic Memorial in Belfast is located on the grounds of Belfast City Hall.

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Address

A1, Belfast, United Kingdom
See all sites in Belfast

Details

Founded: 1898
Category: Palaces, manors and town halls in United Kingdom

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Mark Beattie (13 months ago)
If only the walls could speak, the tales they could tell, both for inside and outside. Get some details out of the way, built by 1906 in a baroque style. Intended to be a landmark that would live long in the memory. Outside, stylish but modest in size, whilst internally, a decor of sheer beauty, a flowing staircase with various marble structures, stained glass windows and a coat of arms for Belfast. Even though it suffered many destructive moments, including the Blitz, it still stands proudly, with gardens and seating areas commendably maintained. With a cenotaph obliging both communities, it stands proudly and is a full representation of the modest but stylish attitude of the friendly warm people from Belfast. "Modesty is the gentle art of enhancing your charm by pretending not to be aware of it."..
diane C (13 months ago)
Very impressive with beautiful marbles, structure, picture and painting etc! Must go with their house tour guide. Mr Michael is so knowledgeable and he has bring life to the history! He has make my visit very interesting!
patarida kiatsamuttara (13 months ago)
The exhibition part is amazing!!! Best museum in Belfast. If you don't have much time in Belfast. Just do this one. I visited war museum and Republic Irish museum, they are incomparable. This one is phenomenon. Totally unexpected to be seen in City Hall. Do not miss ot
MeMe B (14 months ago)
Amazing, super helpful, really knowledgeable friendly people... Anything you want to know about Belfast this is the place to go. Such a BEAUTIFUL building set in absolutely stunning garden, full of interesting things. The Hall itself has male and female public restrooms/toilets, and also facilitates for the disabled. Definitely worth a visit if you're in Belfast.
Dan Rogers (16 months ago)
An impressive building, steeped in history. Visitors are free to wander inside and meander through a number of rooms containing various artefacts relating to Belfast's history. A worthwhile use of around an hours time if you needed an overview of the city. Centrally located, near to bars and restaurants, the building is also eye-catching at night when lit up.
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Cochem Castle

The original Cochem Castle, perched prominently on a hill above the Moselle River, served to collect tolls from passing ships. Modern research dates its origins to around 1100. Before its destruction by the French in 1689, the castle had a long and fascinating history. It changed hands numerous times and, like most castles, also changed its form over the centuries.

In 1151 King Konrad III ended a dispute over who should inherit Cochem Castle by laying siege to it and taking possession of it himself. That same year it became an official Imperial Castle (Reichsburg) subject to imperial authority. In 1282 it was Habsburg King Rudolf’s turn, when he conquered the Reichsburg Cochem and took it over. But just 12 years later, in 1294, the newest owner, King Adolf of Nassau pawned the castle, the town of Cochem and the surrounding region in order to finance his coronation. Adolf’s successor, Albrecht I, was unable to redeem the pledge and was forced to grant the castle to the archbishop in nearby Trier and the Electorate of Trier, which then administered the Reichsburg continuously, except for a brief interruption when Trier’s Archbishop Balduin of Luxembourg had to pawn the castle to a countess. But he got it back a year later.

The Electorate of Trier and its nobility became wealthy and powerful in large part due to the income from Cochem Castle and the rights to shipping tolls on the Moselle. Not until 1419 did the castle and its tolls come under the administration of civil bailiffs (Amtsmänner). While under the control of the bishops and electors in Trier from the 14th to the 16th century, the castle was expanded several times.

In 1688 the French invaded the Rhine and Moselle regions of the Palatinate, which included Cochem and its castle. French troops conquered the Reichsburg and then laid waste not only to the castle but also to Cochem and most of the other surrounding towns in a scorched-earth campaign. Between that time and the Congress of Vienna, the Palatinate and Cochem went back and forth between France and Prussia. In 1815 the western Palatinate and Cochem finally became part of Prussia once and for all.

Louis Jacques Ravené (1823-1879) did not live to see the completion of his renovated castle, but it was completed by his son Louis Auguste Ravené (1866-1944). Louis Auguste was only two years old when construction work at the old ruins above Cochem began in 1868, but most of the new castle took shape from 1874 to 1877, based on designs by Berlin architects. After the death of his father in 1879, Louis Auguste supervised the final stages of construction, mostly involving work on the castle’s interior. The castle was finally completed in 1890. Louis Auguste, like his father, a lover of art, filled the castle with an extensive art collection, most of which was lost during the Second World War.

In 1942, during the Nazi years, Ravené was forced to sell the family castle to the Prussian Ministry of Justice, which turned it into a law school run by the Nazi government. Following the end of the war, the castle became the property of the new state of Rheinland-Pfalz (Rhineland-Palatinate). In 1978 the city of Cochem bought the castle for 664,000 marks.