Michael Blakstad’s Children In Crossfire is a justly famous documentary portraying the lives of children in Creggan (Derry) and various areas of Belfast, such as Ballymurphy & Springmartin, Divis, and the area around Gawn St in east Belfast. The documentary is on youtube and an image from it (c. 28m 13s) is depicted in this mural (Connswater Chronicle) at the foot of the Dee Street overpass into what is now the “Titanic Quarter”.
The panel to the right shows the original Armitage Street; the area has been redeveloped and the street was built over with a cluster of houses named Armitage Close.
By Dee Craig with support from the Housing Executive, City Council, and Connswater Homes.
Southcity Resource & Development Centre (Fb) provides (among many other services) a ‘homework club’ on Tuesday afternoons. They have put up the times tables in four locations around the Village that will encourage kids walking to and from school to practice their maths. The set shown here is in Roden Street; the others are in Lemberg Street, Nubia Street, and Tavanagh Street – below this UVF hooded gunman.
The Bogside Inn and bogside shops have been razed and “exciting plans” made for a new development (Derry Journal). All that remains at present is the electrical station near Durrow Park, and all that remains of the murals along Meenan Square is the final panel shown above: “All children have rights and these rights must be protected.”
This is the Keyworkers mural in front of the Shaftesbury recreation centre (web), created in August 2020 (Fb), in the first few months of the Coronavirus pandemic. A child wearing a mask is watering the rainbow of drivers, NHS, nurses, doctors, social care, community workers, volunteers, and shop workers that arches over the shops and buildings on the Ormeau Road along the Lagan and in front of the City hospital and City Hall.
This mural of characters from Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland – including the Mad Hatter, shown above – was painted back in August (or late July) with about twenty feet of purple-painted wall to the right but there has been no advance made on it since then. Also included are the White Rabbit (or possibly the March Hare), the Cheshire Cat – speaker of our title quote – and Alice herself.
Plans for the Highfield estate were drawn up and approved in 1945, converting a green-field site in the foothills of Black Mountain between the Ballygomartin, West Circular and Springfield roads. The first houses were completed in 1948 (Belfast Forum.) The community hall sits at the centre of the estate. UDA bomb-maker Michael Wright died there in a premature explosion in 1980 (Sutton) and there used to be a UFF mural on the side. This was replaced in 2000 (C01505) and again in 2006(?) (M04512) with the current mural (entitled “Whiterock Festival” after the cross-community event sponsored by the City Council’s ‘Good Relations’ fund (one | two) showing Highfield kids having fun with music provided by a DJ, band, and the Whiterock Flute Band (Fb) drum.
This mural of a skateboarder emerging from a girl’s reading replaced a Red Hand Commando mural (see D01242) at the Brooklands Road entrance to the estate in the mid 2000s. The lettering from the former mural is beginning to bleed through – above the window can be seen “Ballybeen [C Company]” and below it, “Ulster’s Elite”.
Stories from mythical Ireland including the Children Of Lír, Oisín & Niamh, and the Salmon Of Knowledge are depicted in a 2006 mural painted by Mo Chara with the children of the Whiterock Children’s Centre. Whiterock Road, Belfast.
The new mural at Mountainhill Youth Club follows the same format as its predecessor, with the left side being social messages directed at kids and the right being “the village [i.e. Ligoniel] in older times”.