End of an Era H & W


J

James Maxwell

Guest
It is a grey Belfast morning and as I write a crowd of people will be gathering at Harland and Wolff's shipyard for an act of enormous significance. A ship is being named. She will be called The Anvil Point, and she will be the last. It is certain that no other complete ships will ever again be built here.
The small crowd that will gather will be vastly smaller than that which gathered here many years ago, when as a small boy I stood among them to watch the launching of another ship. She was called Canberra, a liner of graceful curves. She was just one of many famous ships that left here over more than a century of proud craftsmanship and tradition.
And now it is finished. Where once a throng of busy workers numbering over thirty thousand people - hard men from a hard city - laboured with calloused hands to give life to the dreams of other countless thousands, nothing will remain, except an empty and deserted wasteland peopled only by the ghosts of those past years. No doubt trendy shopping malls and exclusive housing developments will spring up here, the ground will be sold off by people who care little for history or the wandering ghosts.
Several thousand miles away on the bed of the deep Atlantic the most famous daughter of this proud shipyard - Titanic- sits in spendid silence and isolation, shattered and broken. Yet it is a supreme irony that this once proud vessel will at the end of the day have outlived the intellects that conceived her and the hands that built her.
At Harlands the crowd will disperse, the huge building dock will sit empty and perhaps some will think of past glories. It is a pity and it just didn't have to be like this.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
This is a day I'm sure we all would have preferred never arrived. I hope at least some consideration will be given to some preservation vis a vis the Titanic Quarter project. It would be tragic to see all that history ground to dust under the wreckers ball.
 

Leona Nolan

Member
Dec 17, 2002
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Thanks for all the links Dave!! Well said James!! Even though it was inevitable I still thought there might have been some hope of keeping H & W open but alas it wasn't meant to be
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