Progress at five peace wall sites in Northern Ireland

December 29, 2022 12:27 PM GMT | By PAMEDIA
Follow us on Google News:
Image source: ©2022 Kalkine Media®

Significant progress has been made at five peace wall sites in Northern Ireland, the International Fund for Ireland (IFI) said.

The developments in areas of north Belfast, west Belfast and Londonderry are part of long-term and ongoing work in communities by groups across the traditional divide in the region.

More than 100 barriers remain and range from high concrete walls to gates and fences to buildings, and are owned by a number of bodies, from the Department of Justice, the Northern Ireland Housing Executive and private bodies.

They were erected from the 1970s in response to attacks and disorder during the Troubles.

However, work is ongoing to remove some and transform others.

Across 2021 and 2022, International Fund for Ireland (IFI) chairman Paddy Harte described significant progress at five sites.

The IFI funds groups working for progress around the barriers.

In north Belfast, a brick wall topped by meshing at the Duncairn Gardens/Tiger’s Bay interface in north Belfast was replaced with garden walls and decorative fencing.

At nearby Hillman Court/Duncairn Gardens, a peace fence on top of the wall beside the new houses at Hillman Court was removed and replaced with garden walls and fencing.

And at Adam Street/Upper Canning Street, a cage barrier was replaced with an open-mesh fence and the pedestrian gates beside Star Neighbourhood Centre.

Also in north Belfast, the Flax Street Gate has been replaced with an automated pedestrian and traffic gate, enabling access between Ardoyne and Crumlin Road in November for the first time in almost 40 years.

And the height of a tall peace fence in the Lower Oldpark/Cliftonville area was reduced in December.

In west Belfast, work is underway to remove a peace fence at Moyard Parade, and at the former Finlay’s factory site a peace fence was removed in December ahead of a redevelopment of the site.

In Londonderry, fencing on the city’s historic walls close to the Apprentice Boys of Derry building was reduced and replaced with normalised mesh fencing.

Transformation of peace walls is often done in a low-key way to avoid the risk of flaring tension.

Mr Harte said not many were there to witness the removal of the section of wall in Derry, but expressed delighted at the progress between the Bogside and Brandywell communities.

“It is a significant development on the walls. The walls are now basically open, all of it, and it’s a great sign of communities coming together and it’s also a good opportunity for tourism to develop,” he told the PA news agency.

Mr Harte also described the Black Mountain Shared Space (BMSS) programme as significant.

After long negotiations, the BMSS group, in conjunction with Belfast City Council, has negotiated capital funding to build a shared-space community facility with community enterprise units on the site.

It will enable the removal/redesign of several peace fences in the area.

“We’re going to end up with a state of the art community building. It’s a really interesting case study from where it started at the Finlay’s site when no one wanted to talk about it, to the point now where you have a shared space hub being built on them all,” Mr Harte added.

“Our objective all the time is to work with the groups and other funders. If you take down a wall there has to be something that will work for everyone.

“It’s another major success and once it gets underway, you’ll begin to get the domino effect. That’s the vision for the removal of other walls.”


The content, including but not limited to any articles, news, quotes, information, data, text, reports, ratings, opinions, images, photos, graphics, graphs, charts, animations and video (Content) is a service of Kalkine Media Limited, Company No. 12643132 (Kalkine Media, we or us) and is available for personal and non-commercial use only. Kalkine Media is an appointed representative of Kalkine Limited, who is authorized and regulated by the FCA (FRN: 579414). The non-personalised advice given by Kalkine Media through its Content does not in any way endorse or recommend individuals, investment products or services suitable for your personal financial situation. You should discuss your portfolios and the risk tolerance level appropriate for your personal financial situation, with a qualified financial planner and/or adviser. No liability is accepted by Kalkine Media or Kalkine Limited and/or any of its employees/officers, for any investment loss, or any other loss or detriment experienced by you for any investment decision, whether consequent to, or in any way related to this Content, the provision of which is a regulated activity. Kalkine Media does not intend to exclude any liability which is not permitted to be excluded under applicable law or regulation. Some of the Content on this website may be sponsored/non-sponsored, as applicable. However, on the date of publication of any such Content, none of the employees and/or associates of Kalkine Media hold positions in any of the stocks covered by Kalkine Media through its Content. The views expressed in the Content by the guests, if any, are their own and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of Kalkine Media. Some of the images/music/video that may be used in the Content are copyright to their respective owner(s). Kalkine Media does not claim ownership of any of the pictures displayed/music or video used in the Content unless stated otherwise. The images/music/video that may be used in the Content are taken from various sources on the internet, including paid subscriptions or are believed to be in public domain. We have used reasonable efforts to accredit the source wherever it was indicated or was found to be necessary.

Top LSE Listed Companies