Without People You’re Nothing

“People can change anything they want to and that means everything in the world … Without people you’re nothing.” Joe Strummer was guitarist and vocalist for The Clash. The band was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in January 2003, a month after Strummer’s death from a heart attack (WP). The quotes in the mural are taken from a 2002 MTv News interview that was used in the 2007 documentary about Strummer, The Future Is Unrwitten (youtube)

Replaces the Maya Angelou mural.

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A Citizens’ Assembly

The Citizens’ Assembly is a group of 99 randomly-chosen Irish citizens, plus a chair, that considers large-scale issues over the course of months. It began in 2016 by taking up the Eighth Amendment on abortion, the “pensions timebomb” fixed-term parliaments, voter turnout and referendums, and climate change – it is not restricted, like its predecessor the Constitutional Convention, to constitutional issues (WP). The 2020-2021 Assembly considered gender equality and biodiversity loss. Sinn Féin called for an Assembly on Irish unity at its November (2022) Ard Fheis (Irish Examiner | Derry Journal | youtube panel) and Belfast City Council passed an SDLP motion to recommend that the Taoiseach form an Assembly (News Letter); in December, the Dublin City Council approved a measure calling for an Assembly to consider the topic (SF).

“The Irish government should establish a citizens’ assembly on Irish unity/tionól na saoránach ar aontú na hÉireann.” Sinn Féin’s preferred outcome of such a process is given at the bottom of the board: “#Time4Unity/Am d’Aontacht”. The images show the board in north Belfast (Limestone Road) and south Belfast (Cromac Street).

The “Bill Of Shame” (on the left of the wide image) is the legislation to forbid prosecutions for legacy killings.

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Operation Banner

On February 21st, 1988, 23 year-old Aidan McAnespie was shot in the back by 18 year-old Grenadier Guardsman David Holden at a British Army checkpoint in Aughnacloy, Co. Tyrone as he (McAnespie) walked to the nearby GAA club. In November (2022), Holden was convicted of manslaughter by gross negligence (BBC | Belfast Live) and he was sentenced yesterday to three years, suspended for three years, thus avoiding jail unless he is sentenced for some additional crime (BBC | BelTel | UTv | Irish Times). He is the first British soldier convicted since the Agreement of a Northern Ireland killing; he might be the only one, as legislation is pending in Westminster that would end prosecutions (RTÉ video | Sky New video). The legacy legislation was discussed previously in Was This Lawful? | Soldier A-Z | Come For One, Come For All | Paras Fight Back | Stop The Witch Hunt.

The banner shown above was hanging on the railings at Laganside Courts, Oxford Street: “Operation Banner supporters group, Belafst and Scottish branch. Our veterans are heroes, not criminals. Leave our Operation Banner veterans alone and stop appeasing Sinn Fein/IRA terrorists.” “Operation Banner” is the name given by British forces to their operations in Northern Ireland from 1969 to 2007; since then, the depoloyment of British forces in Northern Ireland has been known as “Operation Helvetic” (Irish News).

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Cool

The Royal Victoria Hospital was the first public building in the world to have air conditioning, developed by Sirocco Works. Fans drew in outside air and passed it over mats of wetted coir (Cooling Post | images at HEVAC-Heritage). The qualifier “public” is necessary perhaps because Carrier invented the general process for a printing factory in New York (ASME) in 1902 and the New York Stock Exchange installed a system in 1902 (6sqft)

The image above is only one of many panels in College Street Mews by Ed Hicks (ig) on the general theme of Belfast and its industry.

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Spared To Testify To Their Glorious Deeds

A history of the 36th (Ulster) Division in three panels along Knockwood Crescent in east Belfast:

1914 – Sons Of Ulster Answering The Call – 1915: “Ulster Division – a great military parade will take place at Belfast on Saturday, May 8, 1915. The troops of the Ulster Division numbering 17,000 men will be on parade. Cavalry, infantry, pioneers, engineers, signallers, cyclists corps, Army service corps and Army medical corps. Men and women of Ulster come and see the greatest military display every helf in Ulster, and do honur to your own Division. God save the King.” The original poster can be seen at Wartime Memories. “‘Quit yourselves like men and comply with your country’s demands.’ – Sir Edward Carson.” With a picture of “the inspection of the 36th (Ulster) Division by King George [V] 30th September 1915.

1916 – For God, For King & For Country – 1917: “The Battle of Albert (1st – 13th July) 1916. The leading battalions of the 46th (Ulster) Division) had been ordered out from Thiepval Wood just before 7.30am and laid down near the German trenches … At zero hour the British barrage lifted. Bugles blew the “Advance”. Up sprang the Ulstermen and without forming up in the waves adopted by other divisions, they rushed the German front line …… By a combination of sensible tactics and Ulster dash, the prize that eluded so many, the capture of a long section of the German front line, had been accomplished. During the Battle of the Somme the (Ulster) Division was the only division of X Corps (British Army) to have achieved its objectives on the opening day of the battle. This came at a heavy price, with the division suffering in two days of fighting 5,500 officers and enlisted men killed, wounded or missing. Of nine Victoria Crosses given to British forces in the battle, 4 were awarded to 36th (Ulster) Division soldiers.” With quotes from Wilfrid Spender (see I Would Rather Be An Ulsterman), and the poem We Shall Keep The Faith by Moina Michael. Please get in touch if you can identify the photo of soldiers going off to war at the top.

1918 – Their Name Liverth For Evermore – 1919: “Whether town dweller or country lad, volunteer or regular, officer or other rank, Catholic or Protestant, the sons of Ulster knew a comradeship and a trust in adversity that should be a lesson to us all.” “36th (Ulster) Division 32,186 killed, wounded, missing. The [Ulster] tower is dedicated to the glory of God in grateful memory of the officers, non commussioned officers and men of the 36th (Ulster) Division, and the sons of Ulster in other forces who laid down their lives in the Great War, and of all their comrades in arms who, by divine grace, were spared to testify to their glorious deeds.”

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All Kings Die, Some Live Forever

The Malojian (Fb) mural (shown below) on the Oh Yeah Centre was the idea of Lyndon Stephens, founder of Quiet Arch records, and when he died in January 2020 after a long illness (Hotpress), Stevie Scullion returned the favour by organising the painting of a mural by Jonny McKerr (JMK) & Dermot McConaghy (DMC) the following November (Dig With It).

Gordon Street, Belfast

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Wolf At The Door

The statues in CS Lewis Square are by sculptor Maurice Harron (who also did the Hands Across The Divide statue in London-/Derry). The seven statues are of Aslan the lion, Mr. Tumnus, Jadis the White Witch, Mr. and Mrs. Beaver, the stone table (in granite), Robin Red Breast, and, Maugrim, the talking wolf who is head of the Witch’s secret police. Most of the figures are in bronze but Maugrim – shown above – is made of about 5,500 pieces of stainless steel welded to a steel frame (Loop).

For images of the murals (by Friz – web | tw) in better condition, see Winter’s End; for the chain and ropes metal-work, see Of The River.

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Fáilte Go ACT

The Irish “Fáilte” is included among the many languages at the entrance to the ACT (Action For Community Transformation) visitor centre on the Shankill. See previously the signage at Boyd’s in the lower Shankill (which does not have a “Fáilte”) and the Coiste claim that All Flags Are Welcome (which does not have a Union Flag).

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Our British Identity

Various changes and additions have been made to the Ulster Volunteers/UVF mural in London Road, east Belfast, compared to the version that replaced a religious mural (Jesus Strong Man) in 2017. The ‘hooded gunman’ board seen in the image above previously replaced a Union Flag in London Road (see East Belfast Ulster Volunteers) but has now been moved to the main Our Lady’s Road: “Our British identity cannot & will not be sacrificed to appease the Irish Republic – East Belfast Battalion [UVF]”.

The side-wall has been modified, to include a UVF emblem and larger lettering for “East Belfast Ulster Volunteer Force”.

For close-ups of the WWI portion, painted by Mark Ervine, see Between The Crosses; for a close-up of the four portraits of volunteers Seymour, Long, Cordner, and Bennett, see Ulster’s Brave.

Images courtesy of Paddy Duffy.

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Old Carrick Hill

In addition to fifteen printed boards, the collection of images of “Carrick Hill in the old days” now includes a mural, of two women talking in the street. The board in the second image shows Pepper Hill Steps before the turn of the twentieth century. The steps used to lead from Mustard Street (which was what Library Street used to be) towards Upper Library Street (now Carrick Hill, the street). Other boards (not shown) show street games, street parties, and Alton United football club, a team founded in 1921 that played in the Falls League and won the 1923 Free State Cup Final (Bohs Sporting Life).

At the corner of Stanhope Street and Regent Street in Carrick Hill.

Images courtesy of Paddy Duffy.

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