Belfast City Hall was opened in 1906. It was commissioned after Queen Victoria upgraded Belfast’s status from town to city in 1888.
It is a magnificent building with a grand marble staircase with stained glass windows winding up the building with the steps. The principle dome is 173 feet high with a stone lantern at the peak.
The room inside the dome is known as the Whispering Gallery because a whisper on one side of the room will travel across the shape of the dome so it can be heard right over on the other side.
On the first working day of the month, the 51 council members sit in the Council chamber. It is an impressive room with a hand carved oak screen and a number of impressive portraits on the walls.
The Great Hall has seven stained glass windows. The windows feature portraits of King William III, Queen Victoria and Kind Edward VI, all of whom visited Belfast before 1906. The other four depict the coats of Arms of the four Irish provinces, Ulster, Connacht, Leinster and Munster.
Statue of Queen Victoria
The building also contains Banqueting Halls and a Reception Hall. They are also magnificently built with stained glass windows and carved oak wall panelling and the Reception Hall has a display case which holds the 1888 charter from Queen Victoria which declared Belfast a city. It also contains the first Royal Charter to be granted to Belfast, from 1613.
Three are a number of statues and monuments around the City Hall. They include an 11 ft tall statue of Queen Victoria, a Titanic Memorial and a Korean Memorial to the soldiers who lost their lives in the Korean Battle of Chaegunghyon.
Visitors can take a tour of the City Hall. There are exhibitions and a Titanic Memorial Garden.