Talk:Greater Belfast

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Implausible Figures[edit]

The estimate for 2006 population appears to be incredibly implausible. Effectively, it entails all of NI's population growth occuring in this area, and over 100,000 people migrating from other area of NI (seeing a decline in their populations of 100,000). I've seen a similar problem on my homecity population figures - civic pride seeming to cause a need to overinflate population estimates. I'm getting rid fo the figure for this reason.


I've redone most of this article. Gonna add a few more bits and bobs, but can anyone think of anything that may fit into this article? --Dom0803 15:42, 1 September 2006 (UTC)

Its starting to shape up, but I have a couple of questions:


How accurate are these? I currently live in the BT12 area, but I know that the part I live in specifically is in South Belfast. Yet across the road (up the Falls) there are some streets (and possibly the Falls itself) that are BT12 also. The Falls is obviously part of West Belfast.

Belfast Postal District Boundaries[edit]

It would be a fairly simple matter, to describe the post code areas in more detail. Feel free to make my descriptions more accurate. As you can tell, I lived in South Belfast.

Belfast 1 is the City Centre and the old Docks. If you want more detail, it's bounded in the west by Fisherwick Place/ College Sqaure East/ Millfield, in the east by the Lagan; in the south by East Bridge Street/ Cromac Square/ May Street/ Donegall Square South/ Howard Street; and, in the north, by Donegall Street, Talbot Street, Corporation Street and Prince's DOck Street.

Belfast 2 is the "Linen Quarter", west of Cromac Street, north of Ormeau Avenue, east of Great Victoria Street and south of Howard Street/Donegall Square South/May Street.

Belfast 3 is the Harbour Estate, which is found on both sides of the Lagan. The extent of the estate has changed, over time, as the area around the old docks has been transferred from the Harbour Commissioners to other bodies and, further out, large areas of land have been reclaimed.

Belfast 4 is bounded by the Harbour Estate, to the north; Belfast 5 to the west and south; and the eastern boundary of the Stormont Estate, to the east.

Belfast 5 is bounded by the Lagan to the west; Bridge End/Newtownards Road/Upper Newtownards Road to the north; and the Albertbridge Road/Castlereagh Street/Castlereagh Road to the south and west [although "The Mount" area is also in Belfast 5].

Belfast 6 is bounded to the north by the Albertbridge Road; to the west by the Lagan and then (south of the Ormeau Embankment) by the Ravenhill Road/Ormeau Road; to the east by the Woodstock Link/Woodstock Road/Beersbridge Road and then by the Castlereagh Road/Ballygowan Road; and, to the south, by the Belfast City boundary at Galwally Park, the eastern boundaries of properties in Upper Galwally, a line running across the A55 Outer Ring, where the cemetery at Galwally used to be, the eastern boundaries of properties on the eastern side of Glencregagh Road, the western boundary of the Lisnabreeny Estate and Knockbracken Road.

Belfast 7 is bounded by East Bridge Street/Central Station/ Maysfield Leisure centre/ Cromac Street/Ormeau Avenue/the Dublin Road/the rear of properties on the eastern side of Bradbury Place/University Road/the western and southern boundary of the Botanic Gardens/the King's Bridge and the Lagan to the south of that bridge/the city boundary, south of (and running parallel to) Galwally Avenue/the Ormeau Road/the Ravenhill Road/the Ormeau Embankment (as far as Ravenhill Reach)/ the Lagan (as far as the Albert Bridge and Maysfield Leisure Centre.

Belfast 8 is entirely outside the City Boundary and extends south from Belfast 7 and west from Belfast 6, almost reaching Drumbo, to the south-west, and including Carryduff, to the south. The boundary, between Belfast 8 and Belfast 9 is the Lagan but only between Galwally and Edenderry.

Belfast 9 is bounded, by Shaftesbury Square/ University Road/ the Botanic Gardens/the Lisburn Road at Sandy Row/ the Belfast-Dublin railway line/ the city boundary of 1918 to the south and the Lagan, between the 1918 city boundary and the King's Bridge.

Belfast 10 includes Finaghy and is outside the 1918 boundary of Belfast.

Belfast 11 is west of Belfast 10.

Belfast 12 is bounded by the Belfast-Dublin railway line/the Lisburn Road at Sandy Row/the rear of properties on the western side of Bradbury Place and Shaftesbury Square/the western boundaries of properties on the western side of Great Victoria Street/ Grosvenor Road/Durham Street/Millfield/Divis Street and [help!]

Belfast 13 is the Shankill and Woodvale

Belfast 14 is Cliftonville and Oldpark

Belfast 15 is the Antrim Road (east of) and York Road/the Shore Road

BT16 is in Dundonald and 17 Dunmurry. After that, we're well outside the city.

As far as I remember, the postal districts were based on the old ward boundaries. Belfast 12 is an amended version of the old "St Anne's" Ward of the late Victorian era. Belfast 9 is similar to "Cromac" (with the Cromac enclave, near the city centre removed into Belfast 2). Belfast 14 is almost the same as "Clifton" and 15 as "Duncairn". Belfast 4 is very similar to "Victoria" and 5 to "Pottinger". "Ormeau" was divided into two, to make Belfast 6 and 7, although the western boundary of "Ormeau" was the Cregagh Road. This remained the boundary of the "Belfast South" Westminster constituency, until recently.

As the city grew, the postal areas carried on, out of town, in the same direction, spreading over the boundary. The same had happend with the ward boundaries, so they weren't always completely logical. For much of the Twentirth Century, the city was between 70 and 80% Protestant, so gerrymandering wasn't an issue (unless it was to keep the Northern Ireland Labour Party at bay).

I note the point about Belfast 12. It seems to take in a lot of different neighbourhoods but, one hundred years ago, many of these were still undeveloped and, until the 1960s, Belfast was one city, not the collection of tribal enclaves that it now is. The St Anne's Ward would have been seen, in over-all terms, as mixed, although the Donegall Road (as far as Glenmachan Street) was clearly loyalist and the Lower Falls mainly nationalist. However, there were Prods in that area and along the top part of the Donegall Road. At one time, they would have been about 30% of the population. Much of the Grosvenor Road was a loyalist area. There were also more Catholics living in "Protestant" areas than after 1971. Therefore, the postal district boundaries have to be seen in the context of their time [i.e. the early Twentieth Century].

The construction of the first phase of the Urban Motorway (later downgraded to the "Westlink"), demographic change, the replacement of almost all Victorian and Edwardian terraced housing with 1970s and 1980s cul-de-sacs (at the insistence of the Army/Police, highway engineers and planners) and the formation of virtual ghettoes during the Troubles combined to create a city, which is scarcely recognisable today, certainly outside the central business district. Even there, only a few landmark buildings have been saved.

What is the extant of G.Belfast?[edit]

The article says "includes North Down". I'm not sure that Greater Belfast includes all of North Down, which extends east at least as far as Groomsport, Donaghadee and Millisle. --Mal 00:00, 10 September 2006 (UTC)

Donaghadee and Millisle are in Ards LGD and, therefore, not in the BMA.

Clarification of the Name, Population and Boundaries of "Greater Belfast"[edit]

The correct title is the "Belfast Metropolitan Area", as found in the Area Plan and used by government departments. The term, "Belfast Urban Area", was used for the 2001 Area Plan, which covered the fifteen years, between 1986 and 2001.

The Belfast Metropolitan Area has a geographical spread of approximately 960 sq km and a population of about 700 000 [].

Local government reorganisation took effect on 1 October 1973, with many responsiblities passing from local government [Counties. County Boroughs, Municipal Boroughs, Urban Districts and Rural Districts] to Northern Ireland Government Departments. The Parliament of Northern Ireland had passed a Local Government Act in 1972, shortly before its prorogation by the British Government. The post-1973 Local Government District boundaries were based on those of the pre-1973 Rural Districts but the "new" Local Government Districts incorporated urban areas within them.

The Local Government Districts of Belfast, Newtownabbey, Carrickfergus, Lisburn, Castlereagh and North Down make up the Belfast Metropolitan Area, which is almost exactly the same as the Eastern Division of the Roads Service.

The Planning Service Divisions have different boundaries, the Belfast Division taking in only Belfast, Castlereagh and Newtownabbey Local Government Districts. In Belfast and Lisburn, the local authorities are styled "City Councils" and the other districts in the BMA are "borough councils" but there is no difference in their functions or powers.

Propose merge with Belfast Metropolitan Area[edit]

As far as I can see these are the same thing? Therefore no need for two pages. Can anyone clarify? I think I prefer Greater Belfast (as in Greater London or Greater Manchester).Tsumo@ 12:27, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

If they were the same thing, they wouldn't have 2 different populations. Urban areas and metropolitan areas are not interchangable, in this case we're refering to the urban area (unbroken built-up area) and I have changed the figure so it matches that found on the conurbations in the UK page. Metropolitan areas often include the entire commuter belt and/or every connecting, borough, district or county. For example, only part of North Down is in the Belfast Urban Area (I don't think Bangor is), but the whole of North Down is included in the metropolitan area. Marky-Son 01:30, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

I have to agree with Marky-Son. I have a feeling that "Greater" is a term to describe towns/sprawl that are adjacent to the city with little or no green land inbetween. So in Greater Belfast's case that would be: Newtownabbey, maybe Carrickfergus, Holywood, Dundonald, Lisburn, Carryduff, Dunmurray (if that is even classed as seperate from Belfast). Then the BMA would be all those and Bangor, Newtownards etc... that are quite close to Belfast and whose residents would work/shop/get wasted in Belfast. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:43, 4 November 2007 (UTC)