Titanic buildings in Belfast demolished


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I hear from a friend of mine in Northern Ireland that there has been extensive demolition going on in Queen's Island, Titanic's birthplace. Many buildings seen in photos taken during Titanic's construction that have stood there at least since 1908 have been flattened in the last few weeks. The funnel shop (as seen in famous picture of Olympic's fourth funnel leaving the shop) has been demolished, as has the plater's shop. I am told however, that Thomas Andrew's Office and the main offices as well as the two slipways have survived.

How could we have let this happen? The developers in Belfast have just destroyed a major part of Titanic history!

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http://www.titanic2-cruise.com
 
May 9, 2000
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Sounds ugly. Was it a kinda secret action or were there any reports/discussions somewhere (maybe in Belfast newspapers) before it happened? Was there any need for doing that?

Regards Henning
 
Jul 9, 2000
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Can't say as this is much of a surprise. How long have these buildings been largely neglected and what sort of shape were they in? Probably not all that good, and therein would lie the reason for demolition. Neccessery perhaps, but unfortunate nonetheless.

Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 
Eddie has now added the photos of the destruction he took at the weekend. The buildings had been sitting empty for sometime though they were not in danger of falling down. The demolition is a necessary part of the 'Titanic Quarter' redevelopment of Harland & Wolff's yard.

http://www.gregorye77.freeserve.co.uk/demoliti.htm

One wonders why the old buildings could not have been converted? If it's to be called Titanic Quarter, surely it's a nonsense to destroy buildings that were there at the time of Titanic's construction and replace them with 21st century avant garde architecture?

Money, I suppose.

http://www.gregorye77.freeserve.co.uk/demoliti.htm
 

Mike Herbold

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Dec 13, 1999
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Stuart:
Thanks so much for posting those photos. It's sad in a way, but we must remember that life goes on, that things change and are always changing, including ourselves. It would be nice to make a monument of everything, but it's just not practical at times.

I often visit the sites where passengers lived and worked. One former address is now a coin-operated carwash, another is now a parking lot, and another is a mini-park next to a freeway offramp. I often say to myself, why couldn't they have left it the way it was. And in some cases they do. The former home of Walter Miller Clark in Los Angeles is still in great shape, and still inhabited.

But things get old, and people, too. It would be nice to have more survivors left, but time does march on. I'd love to have the energy and athleticism and looks that I had at the age of 18, but it doesn't work that way.

And the ship that fascinates us all made the bigest change of all, and only lasted a few short days before plunging to the bottom of the Atlantic.

Luckily we have pictures and books to remember her by. Thanks for those final pictures of some of the Harland and Wolff buildings.
 
May 9, 2000
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Hi all

and thanks Stuart for all these pictures and informations. On the one hand it is pretty sad that all these buildings are vanished now. But we should think about the fact why they were not protected as historical buildings. And what would have been to be invested to restore these buildings? What need could they have for H&W? A perpetual museum that could bring thousands of visitors only when another successful film would move masses of people...?

It seems difficult enough to save the last White Star steamer in Paris.

If it is necessary to modernise parts of the wharf to keep many workers (by the way: do they modernise?), it is ok to me. I hope the buildings were photographed and documented before the demolishing act. Hey, they were no buildings of dreams (like a "ship of dreams"). Let us avoid any pathos and just say good bye...

Regards Henning
 

Mike Herbold

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Stuart:
Your compatriot Senan Molony posted an interesting report on Jeff Newman's Titanic Discussion List the other day to the effect that Harland & Wolff could be close to going out of business. They have been on the brink for some time now. They probably should have revitalized the yard years ago.
 
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