1983 United Kingdom general election
The 1983 United Kingdom general election was held on Thursday 9 June 1983. It gave the Conservative Party under the leadership of Margaret Thatcher the most decisive election victory since that of the Labour Party in 1945. Thatcher's first four years as Prime Minister had not been an easy time. Unemployment increased during the first three years of her premiership and the economy went through a recession. However, the British victory in the Falklands War led to a recovery of her personal popularity. By the time Thatcher called the election in May 1983, the Conservatives were most people's firm favourites to win the general election; the Labour Party had been led by Michael Foot since the resignation of former Prime Minister James Callaghan in 1980. They had fared well in opinion polls and local elections during this time, but issues developed which would lead directly to their defeat. Labour adopted a platform, considered more left-wing than usual. Several moderate Labour MPs had defected from the party to form the Social Democratic Party.
The opposition vote split evenly between the Alliance and Labour. With its worst electoral performance since 1918, the Labour vote fell by over 3 million votes from 1979 and this accounted for both a national swing of 4% towards the Conservatives and their larger parliamentary majority of 144 seats though the Conservatives' total vote fell by 700,000; this was the last general election where a governing party increased its number of seats until 2015. The Alliance came within 700,000 votes of out-polling Labour. By gaining 25% of the popular vote, the Alliance won the largest such percentage for any third party since the 1923 general election. Despite this, they won only 23 seats, whereas Labour won 209; the Liberals argued that a proportional electoral system would have given them a more representative number of MPs. Changing the electoral system had been a long-running Liberal Party campaign plank and would be adopted by the Liberal Democrats; the election night was broadcast live on the BBC, was presented by David Dimbleby, Sir Robin Day and Peter Snow.
It was broadcast on ITV, presented by Alastair Burnet, Peter Sissons and Martyn Lewis. Three future Leaders of the Labour Party were first elected as Members of Parliament at this election—two of them would hold the office of Prime Minister, whilst Corbyn became Labour leader in 2015. Former Labour Prime Minister Harold Wilson, Shirley Williams, Bill Rodgers, Joan Lestor and Tony Benn left Parliament as a result of this election, although Benn would return in a by-election the following year, Lestor at the following general election. Michael Foot was elected leader of the Labour Party in 1980; the election of Foot signalled that the core of the party was swinging to the left and the move exacerbated divisions within the party. In 1981 a group of senior figures including Roy Jenkins, David Owen, Bill Rodgers and Shirley Williams left Labour to found the Social Democratic Party; the SDP agreed to a pact with the Liberals for the 1983 election and stood as "The Alliance". The campaign displayed the huge divisions between the two major parties.
Thatcher had been unpopular during her first two years in office until the swift and decisive victory in the Falklands War, coupled with an improving economy raised her standings in the polls. The Conservatives' key issues included economic growth and defence. Labour's campaign manifesto involved leaving the European Economic Community, abolishing the House of Lords, abandoning the United Kingdom's nuclear deterrent by cancelling Trident and removing cruise missiles—a programme dubbed by Labour MP Gerald Kaufman "the longest suicide note in history". Pro-Labour political journalist Michael White, writing in The Guardian, commented: "There was something magnificently brave about Michael Foot's campaign but it was like the Battle of the Somme." Following boundary changes in 1983, the BBC and ITN co-produced a calculation of how the 1979 general election would have gone if fought on the new 1983 boundaries. The following table shows the effects of the boundary changes on the House of Commons: Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher visited Buckingham Palace on the afternoon of 9 May and asked the Queen to dissolve Parliament on 13 May, announcing that the election would be held on 9 June.
The key dates were as follows: The election saw a landslide victory for the Conservatives, achieving their best results since 1935. Although there was a slight drop in their share of the vote, they made significant gains at the expense of Labour; the night was a disaster for the Labour Party. The massive increase of support for the Alliance at the expense of Labour meant that, in many seats, the collapse in the Labour vote allowed the Conservatives to gain. Despite winning over 25% of the national vote, the Alliance got fewer than 4% of seats, 186 fewer than Labour; the most significant Labour loss of the night was Tony Benn, defeated in the revived Bristol East seat. SDP President Shirley Williams a prominent leader in the Social Democratic Party, lost her Crosby seat which she had won in a by-election in 1981. Bill Rodgers, another leading figure in the Alliance failed to win his old seat that he held as a Labour MP. In Scotland, both Labour a
Ulster Protestants are an ethnoreligious group in the Irish province of Ulster, where they make up about 43% of the population. Many Ulster Protestants are descendants of settlers who arrived in the early 17th century Ulster Plantation; this was the colonisation of the Gaelic, Catholic province of Ulster by English-speaking Protestants from Great Britain from the Scottish Lowlands and Northern England. Many more Scottish Protestant migrants arrived in Ulster in the late 17th century; those who came from Scotland were Presbyterians, while those from England were Anglicans. There is a small Methodist community and the Methodist Church in Ireland dates John Wesley's first visit to Ulster as 1752. Since sectarian and political divisions between Ulster Protestants and Catholics have played a major role in the history of Ulster, of Ireland as a whole. Ulster Protestants descend from a variety of lineages, including Lowland Scots, English and Huguenots; the Ulster Protestant community emerged during the Plantation of Ulster.
This was the colonisation of Ulster with loyal English-speaking Protestants from Great Britain under the reign of King James. Those involved in planning the plantation saw it as a means of controlling, "civilising" Ulster; the province was wholly Gaelic and rural, had been the region most resistant to English control. The plantation was meant to sever Gaelic Ulster's links with the Gaelic Highlands of Scotland. Most of the land colonised was confiscated from the native Irish. Begun in 1606, the plantation became government-sponsored in 1609, with much land for settlement being allocated to the Livery Companies of the City of London. By 1622 there was a total settler population of about 19,000, by the 1630s somewhere between 50,000 and as many as 80,000. Another influx of an estimated 20,000 Scottish Protestants to the coastal counties of Antrim and Londonderry, was a result of the seven ill years of famines in Scotland in the 1690s; this migration decisively changed the population of Ulster. While Presbyterians of Scottish descent and origin had become the majority of Ulster Protestants by the 1660s, when Protestants still made up only a third of the population, they had become an absolute majority in the province by the 1720s.
Divisions between Ulster's Protestants and Irish Catholics have played a major role in the history of Ulster from the 17th century to the present day. It has led to bouts of violence and political upheaval, notably in the Irish Confederate Wars, the Williamite War, the Armagh disturbances, the Irish revolutionary period, the Troubles. There were tensions between the two main groups of Ulster Protestants; the Penal Laws discriminated against both Catholics and Presbyterians, in an attempt to force them to accept the state religion, the Anglican Church of Ireland. Repression of Presbyterians by Anglicans intensified after the Glorious Revolution after the Test Act of 1703, was one reason for heavy onward emigration to North America by Ulster Presbyterians during the 18th century. Between 1717 and 1775, an estimated 200,000 migrated to; some Presbyterians returned to Scotland during this period, where the Presbyterian Church of Scotland was the state religion. These Penal Laws are what led Ulster Presbyterians to become founders and members of the United Irishmen, a republican movement which launched the Irish Rebellion of 1798.
Repression of Presbyterians ended after the rebellion, with the relaxation of the Penal Laws. The Kingdom of Ireland became part of the United Kingdom in 1801; as Belfast became industrialised in the 19th century, it attracted yet more Protestant immigrants from Scotland. After the partition of Ireland in 1920, the new government of Northern Ireland launched a campaign to entice Protestants from the Irish Free State to relocate to Northern Ireland, with inducements of state jobs and housing, large numbers accepted; the vast majority of Ulster Protestants live in Northern Ireland, part of the United Kingdom. Most tend to support the Union with Great Britain, are referred to as unionists. Unionism is an ideology, divided by some into two camps; the Loyal Orders, which include the Orange Order, Royal Black Institution and Apprentice Boys of Derry, are Protestant fraternal organisations which originated in Ulster and still have most of their membership there. About 3% of Ulster Protestants live in the three counties of Ulster now in the Republic of Ireland, Cavan and Donegal, where they make up around a fifth of the Republic's Protestant population.
Unlike Protestants in the rest of the Republic, some retain a sense of Britishness, a small number have difficulty identifying with the independent Irish state. Most Ulster Protestants speak Ulster English, some on the north-east coast speak with the Ulster Scots dialects. A growing number speak the Irish language, Protestantism in Ireland Amity and enmity: variety in Ulster Protestant culture Ulster Protestants - Blood & Belonging
Drumchapel, known to locals and residents as'The Drum', is part of the city of Glasgow, having been annexed from Dunbartonshire in 1938. It borders Bearsden to the Clydebank to the west; the area is bordered by Yoker in Glasgow. The name derives from the Gaelic meaning'the ridge of the horse'; as part of the overspill policy of Glasgow Corporation, a huge housing estate was built here in the 1950s to house 34,000 people - it is this estate, now most associated with Drumchapel, despite there being an area known as Old Drumchapel made up of affluent villas to the south of modern Drumchapel. The area had well-known social problems, notably anti-social behaviour and degeneration of poorly constructed post-war housing. However, it remains popular with many of its residents and more there has been substantial private investment in the area, leading to the construction of new housing developments in the North West of the district; the area, along with Easterhouse and Greater Pollok are collectively known as'Big Four' post-war social housing schemes.
All are similar in terms of architecture and planning, tend to suffer from a similar range of social problems. The area is served by Drumchapel railway station. Drumchapel was part of the parish of New Kilpatrick, becoming devolved in the late 19th century and a church parish in its own right in 1923; the Old Church was built in 1901 for an increasing local population. The parish boundary was redrawn to create the new parish of St Margarets in Knightswood. Civil administration transferred from New Kilpatrick to Glasgow Corporation in 1938; as part of the overspill policy of Glasgow Corporation, a huge housing estate was built here in the 1950s The housing in the area is now 72% post-war tenement and 6% multi-storey flats, the remainder being other flats and houses. The current population was estimated in 2002 at 15,000, split across 6,000 households; the population of Drumchapel fell by 22% between 1996-2012 to 13,000. The proportion of people in the area from ethnic minority groups increased over the same time to 5%, which remains well below average for Glasgow.
Life expectancy in the area is about five years less than the average for Glasgow. Socio-economically, the area is not affluent. In 2011/12, 48% of children were classed as living in poverty, 57% of the population were NRS social grade D or E. 56% of households were single-parent. 21 % of young people were not in employment or training. Just 22 % of the population own about half the average figure for Glasgow; the major employers for Drumchapel from the 1950s to the 1980s were the Goodyear Tyre & Rubber Co Ltd, Beattie's Biscuit Factory, Singers Sewing Machines - Clydebank, The Reo Stakis Organisation - Hills Hotel and Rigg Public Bar, The Golden Garter Night Club and The Butty Public Bar, The Edrington Group Whisky Bond and the various shipyards on the Clyde. Beattie's Biscuit factory closed in 1978 and the Goodyear and Singers factories both closed in February 1979. Reo Stakis's Hills Hotel and Rigg Public Bar along with The Golden Garter Night Club closed in June 1988; the Butty Public Bar was sold to Scottish & Newcastle Breweries and is still going strong with Billy Bryson the Manager for over 30 years now holding the lease.
The Edrington Group Whisky Bond has grown over the years and is still a major employer in the area while the shipyards have all gone with the exception the now BAE Systems yards at Scotstoun and Govan. Drumchapel is now going through its 2nd regeneration with promises of better schools, better homes and higher employment. Glasgow tower blocks The History of Drumchapel Glasgow West Regeneration Area Housing Regeneration Article Overspill Policy and the Glasgow Slum Clearance Project in the Twentieth Century: From One Nightmare to Another? Article by Lauren Paice, Oxford Brookes University, 2008 Drumchapel The Frustration Game, 1989 documentary on living conditions in the area
Apprentice Boys of Derry
The Apprentice Boys of Derry is a Protestant fraternal society with a worldwide membership of over 10,000, founded in 1814 and based in the city of Derry, Northern Ireland. There are clubs and branches in Ulster and elsewhere in Ireland, England and Toronto, Canada; the society aims to commemorate the 1689 Siege of Derry when Catholic James II of England and Ireland and VII of Scotland laid siege to the walled city, at the time a Protestant stronghold. Apprentice Boys parades once led to virulent opposition from the city's Irish nationalist majority, but a more conciliatory approach has taken place and now the parades are trouble-free; the 2014'Shutting of the Gates' parade was described as "the biggest in years" and was violence-free. The siege of Derry began in December 1688 when 13 apprentice boys shut the gates of the city against a regiment of twelve hundred Jacobite soldiers, commanded by the Roman Catholic, Alexander Macdonnell, Earl of Antrim, withdrawn. Retaliatory action passed to the Duke of Tyrconnel who assembled a large but poorly ordered Jacobite force commanded by Sir Richard Hamilton to march north against the Ulster Protestants.
The deposed King James II, who had travelled from France to Ireland in March, took charge with the aid of two French generals. Arriving at the gates of Derry on 18 April 1689, he was greeted by a cry of "No Surrender!" The siege was lifted on 28 July 1689 when two armed merchant ships, the Mountjoy and the Phoenix, sailed up the River Foyle to breach a timber boom, stretched across the river, blocking supplies to the city. The ships' approach was covered against the Jacobite besiegers by cannon fire from the frigate HMS Dartmouth, under Captain John Leake; the Mountjoy rammed and broke the barricading boom at Culmore fort and the ships moved in, unloading many tons of food to relieve the siege. Three days the besieging forces burned their camps and departed, it was reported that some 4,000 people had died of injury. Many had been forced to eat dogs and rats; the Apprentice Boys hold two main annual celebrations. These are the'closing of the gates' on the first Saturday in December, in memory of the action of the original apprentice boys.
The Relief Parade in Derry is the largest of all the parades in Northern Ireland. In some areas of the city bonfires similar to those held on 11 July are burned. In recent years, it has transformed into the week-long Maiden City Festival in August, is accompanied by a series of diverse cultural events including bluegrass music festivals and Ulster Scots music and tuition, arts exhibitions and events staged by other local minority communities such as the Chinese and Polish communities. During the December celebrations it is traditional to hang an effigy of Robert Lundy. Before the Troubles the effigy was hung from, burnt in front of, the pillar commemorating George Walker; this was on the city's walls overlooking the Irish nationalist Bogside area, was blown up by the Provisional Irish Republican Army in 1973. According to the Parades Commission, the Apprentice Boys held 231 parades in Northern Ireland in 2007. Of these, 116 were Relief of Derry parades, 115 were Closing of the Gates parades; the main December parade in Derry was expected to include 1500 marchers and 28 bands, while the main August parade was estimated at 10,000 marchers and 127 bands.
In 2009/2010 32 marches took place in Scotland. The first celebrations of the relief of Derry took place on Sunday 28 July 1689, when the starving citizens crowded the walls to welcome the relief ships; the first organised celebrations took place on Sunday 8 August 1689 when a thanksgiving service was held in St Columb's Cathedral. Subsequent celebrations have followed that precedent. On 1 August 1714, ex-Governor and siege hero Colonel Mitchelburne hoisted the Crimson Flag on the Cathedral steeple and formed the first club known as the Apprentice Boys; the formal arrangements for the August and December commemorations were organised by the military garrison based in Derry. In the late eighteenth century, Roman Catholic clergy joined in the prayer services offered on the walls of Derry, in the early nineteenth century Catholics joined the celebrations with their Protestant fellow-citizens. However, the British government's Londonderry Riot Inquiry of 1869 found that "the character of the demonstrations has undergone a change, among the Catholic lower classes at least, they are now regarded with the most hostile feelings".
The inquiry recommended. For similar reasons they recommended the banning of Orange Order parades; the Apprentice Boys role in the celebrations became more important in the early nineteenth century which saw the establishment of the Apprentice Boys of Derry Club in 1814 and the No Surrender Club in 1824. New clubs were formed over the following years. In December 1861 the various clubs agreed to associate together under a governing body known as the General Committee; this remains the governing body of the association, each of the eight clubs sending an equal number of representatives, together with delegates of various amalgamated committees around the UK. In 1865, the local Conservative MP, Lord Claud John Hamilton, won control of the Apprentice Boys and rallied the organisation against the campaign to disestablish the Anglican Church of Ireland, much to the dismay of many Presbyterian members; the celebrations continued in the usual form with the firing of the sieg
Fenian was an umbrella term for the Fenian Brotherhood and Irish Republican Brotherhood, fraternal organisations dedicated to the establishment of an independent Irish Republic in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Originating in Irish mythology with the Fianna, the term derives from groups of legendary warrior bands following Fionn mac Cumhail, with their associated mythological tales, known as the Fenian Cycle; the term Fenian today is seen as a derogatory sectarian term in Ireland to refer to Irish nationalists and/or Catholics in Northern Ireland. The term has been used in Scotland as a slur to refer to Scottish Catholics or Scots with Irish ancestry. Fenianism, according to O'Mahony, is symbolised by two principles: firstly, that Ireland has a natural right to independence, secondly, that this right could be won only by an armed revolution; the term Fenianism was sometimes used by the political establishment in the 1860s for any form of mobilisation among the Irish or those who expressed any Irish nationalist sentiments, or questioned the Protestant Ascendancy such as by advocating for the rights of tenant farmers.
In this sense the term was applied inaccurately by the political establishment to the unrelated Tenant Right League, Irish National Land League and Irish Parliamentary Party who did not advocate explicitly for an independent Irish Republic or the use of force. The establishment warned people about this perceived threat to turn what they saw as "decent civilised" society on its head by movements such as trade unionism seeking to change the existing social order in the United Kingdom. James Stephens, one of the "Men of 1848," had established himself in Paris, was in correspondence with John O'Mahony in the United States and other advanced nationalists at home and abroad; this would include the Phoenix National and Literary Society, with Jeremiah O'Donovan among its more prominent members, formed at Skibbereen. Along with Thomas Clarke Luby, John O'Leary and Charles Kickham he founded the Irish Republican Brotherhood on 17 March 1858 in Lombard Street, Dublin; the Fenian Rising in 1867 proved to be a "doomed rebellion," poorly organised and with minimal public support.
Most of the Irish-American officers who landed at Cork, in the expectation of commanding an army against England, were imprisoned. In the aftermath, Fenian assassination circles were active in Cork and in Dublin and were responsible for shooting two officers of the Dublin Metropolitan Police while on duty in October 1867. In 1882, a breakaway IRB faction calling itself the Irish National Invincibles assassinated the British Chief Secretary for Ireland Lord Frederick Cavendish and his Permanent Under-secretary, in an incident known as the Phoenix Park Murders; the Fenian Brotherhood, the Irish Republican Brotherhood's US branch, was founded by John O'Mahony and Michael Doheny, both of whom had been "out" in 1848. In the face of nativist suspicion, it established an independent existence, although it still worked to gain Irish American support for armed rebellion in Ireland. O'Mahony ran operations in the US, sending funds to Stephens and the IRB in Ireland, disagreement over O'Mahony's leadership led to the formation of two Fenian Brotherhoods in 1865.
The US chapter of the movement was sometimes referred to as the IRB. After the failed invasion of Canada, it was replaced by Clan na Gael. In Canada, Fenian is used to designate a group of Irish radicals, a.k.a. the American branch of the Fenian Brotherhood in the 1860s. They made several attempts to invade some parts of the British colonies of New Brunswick and Canada, with the raids continuing after these colonies had been confederated; the ultimate goal of the Fenian raids was to hold Canada hostage and therefore be in a position to blackmail the United Kingdom to give Ireland its independence. Because of the invasion attempts, support and/or collaboration for the Fenians in Canada became rare among the Irish. Francis Bernard McNamee, the man who started the Fenian movement in Montreal, was a case in point. In public, he proclaimed his loyalty to the queen and called for an Irish militia company to defend Canada against the Fenians. In private, he wrote that the real purpose of an Irish militia company would be to assist the Fenian invasion, adding for good measure that if the government denied his request he would raise the cry of anti-Irish Catholic discrimination and bring more of his aggrieved countrymen into the Fenian Brotherhood.
A suspected Fenian, Patrick J. Whelan, was hanged in Ottawa for the assassination of Irish Canadian politician, Thomas D'Arcy McGee in 1868, a member of the Irish Confederation in the 1840s; the danger posed by the Fenian raids was an important element in motivating the British North America colonies to consider a more centralised defence for mutual protection, realised through Canadian Confederation. The Fenians in England and the Empire were a major threat to political stability. In the late 1860s the IRB control centre was in Lancashire. In 1868 the Supreme Council of the IRB, the provisional government of the Irish Republic, was restructured; the four Irish provinces: Connacht, Leinster and Munster had representatives on the council, along with Scotland, the north and south of England and London, had representatives on the Council. Four honorary members were co-opted
Belfast is a city in the United Kingdom, the capital city of Northern Ireland, standing on the banks of the River Lagan on the east coast of Ireland. It is second-largest on the island of Ireland, it had a population of 333,871 as of 2015. By the early 19th century, Belfast became a major port, it played a key role in the Industrial Revolution, becoming the biggest linen-producer in the world, earning it the nickname "Linenopolis". By the time it was granted city status in 1888, it was a major centre of Irish linen production, tobacco-processing and rope-making. Shipbuilding was a key industry. Belfast as of 2019 has a major aerospace and missiles industry. Industrialisation and the inward migration it brought made Belfast Ireland's biggest city and it became the capital of Northern Ireland following the Partition of Ireland in 1922, its status as a global industrial centre ended in the decades after the Second World War of 1939–1945. Belfast suffered in the Troubles: in the 1970s and 1980s it was one of the world's most dangerous cities.
However, a survey conducted by a finance company and published in 2016 rated the city as one of the safest within the United Kingdom. Throughout the 21st century, the city has seen a sustained period of calm, free from the intense political violence of former years, has benefitted from substantial economic and commercial growth. Belfast remains a centre for industry, as well as for the arts, higher education and law, is the economic engine of Northern Ireland. Belfast is still a major port, with commercial and industrial docks, including the Harland and Wolff shipyard, dominating the Belfast Lough shoreline, it is served by two airports: George Best Belfast City Airport and Belfast International Airport 15 miles west of the city. The Globalization and World Cities Research Network listed Belfast as a Gamma global city in 2018; the name Belfast is derived from the Irish Béal Feirsde, spelt Béal Feirste. The word béal means "mouth" or "rivermouth" while feirsde/feirste is the genitive singular of fearsaid and refers to a sandbar or tidal ford across a river's mouth.
The name would thus translate as " mouth of the sandbar" or " mouth of the ford". This sandbar was formed at the confluence of two rivers at what is now Donegall Quay: the Lagan, which flows into Belfast Lough, its tributary the Farset; this area was the hub. The Irish name Béal Feirste is shared by a townland in County Mayo, whose name has been anglicised as Belfarsad. An alternative interpretation of the name is "mouth of of the sandbar", an allusion to the River Farset, which flows into the Lagan where the sandbar was located; this interpretation was favoured by John O'Donovan. It seems clear, that the river itself was named after the tidal crossing. In Ulster-Scots, the name of the city has been variously translated as Bilfawst, Bilfaust or Baelfawst, although "Belfast" is used. Although the county borough of Belfast was created when it was granted city status by Queen Victoria in 1888, the city continues to be viewed as straddling County Antrim and County Down; the site of Belfast has been occupied since the Bronze Age.
The Giant's Ring, a 5,000-year-old henge, is located near the city, the remains of Iron Age hill forts can still be seen in the surrounding hills. Belfast remained a small settlement of little importance during the Middle Ages. John de Courcy built a castle on what is now Castle Street in the city centre in the 12th century, but this was on a lesser scale and not as strategically important as Carrickfergus Castle to the north, built by de Courcy in 1177; the O'Neill clan had a presence in the area. In the 14th century, Cloinne Aodha Buidhe, descendants of Aodh Buidhe O'Neill, built Grey Castle at Castlereagh, now in the east of the city. Conn O'Neill of the Clannaboy O'Neills owned vast lands in the area and was the last inhabitant of Grey Castle, one remaining link being the Conn's Water river flowing through east Belfast. Belfast became a substantial settlement in the 17th century after being established as a town by Sir Arthur Chichester, it was settled by Protestant English and Scottish migrants at the time of the Plantation of Ulster.
In 1791, the Society of United Irishmen was founded in Belfast, after Henry Joy McCracken and other prominent Presbyterians from the city invited Theobald Wolfe Tone and Thomas Russell to a meeting, after having read Tone's "Argument on Behalf of the Catholics of Ireland". Evidence of this period of Belfast's growth can still be seen in the oldest areas of the city, known as the Entries. Belfast blossomed as a commercial and industrial centre in the 18th and 19th centuries and became Ireland's pre-eminent industrial city. Industries thrived, including linen, rope-making, heavy engineering and shipbuilding, at the end of the 19th century, Belfast overtook Dublin as the largest city in Ireland; the Harland and Wolff shipyards became one of the largest shipbuilders in the world, employing up to 35,000 workers. In 1886 the city suffered intense riots over the issue of home rule. In 1920–22, Belfast became the capital of the new entity of Northern Ireland as the island of Ireland was partitioned.
The accompanying conflict cost up to 500 lives in Belfast, the bloodiest sectarian strife in the city until the Troubles of the late 1960s onwards. Belfas
Harland and Wolff
Harland & Wolff Heavy Industries is a heavy industrial company, specialising in ship repair and offshore construction, located in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Harland & Wolff is famous for having built the majority of the ships intended for the White Star Line. Well known ships built by Harland & Wolff include the Olympic-class trio: RMS Titanic, RMS Olympic and RMS Britannic, the Royal Navy's HMS Belfast, Royal Mail Line's Andes, Shaw Savill's Southern Cross, Union-Castle's RMS Pendennis Castle, P&O's Canberra. Harland and Wolff's official history, Shipbuilders to the World, was published in 1986; as of 2011, the expanding offshore wind power industry has been the prime focus, 75% of the company's work is based on offshore renewable energy. Harland & Wolff was formed in 1861 by Hamburg-born Gustav Wilhelm Wolff. In 1858 Harland general manager, bought the small shipyard on Queen's Island from his employer Robert Hickson. After buying Hickson's shipyard, Harland made his assistant Wolff a partner in the company.
Wolff was the nephew of Gustav Schwabe, invested in the Bibby Line, the first three ships that the newly incorporated shipyard built were for that line. Harland made a success of the business through several innovations, notably replacing the wooden upper decks with iron ones which increased the strength of the ships. Walter Henry Wilson became a partner of the company in 1874; when Harland died in 1895, William James Pirrie became the chairman of the company until his death in 1924. Thomas Andrews became the general manager and head of the draughting department in 1907, it was in this period that the company built Olympic and the two other ships in her class Titanic and Britannic between 1909 and 1914, commissioning Sir William Arrol & Co. to construct a massive twin gantry and slipway structure for the project. In 1912, due to increasing political instability in Ireland, the company acquired another shipyard at Govan in Glasgow, Scotland, it bought the former London & Glasgow Engineering & Iron Shipbuilding Co's Middleton and Govan New shipyards in Govan and Mackie & Thomson's Govan Old yard, owned by William Beardmore and Company.
The three neighbouring yards were amalgamated and redeveloped to provide a total of seven building berths, a fitting-out basin and extensive workshops. Harland & Wolff specialised in building tankers and cargo ships at Govan; the nearby shipyard of A. & J. Inglis was purchased by Harland & Wolff in 1919, along with a stake in the company's primary steel supplier, David Colville & Sons. Harland & Wolff established shipyards at Bootle in Liverpool, North Woolwich in London and Southampton. However, these shipyards were all closed from the early 1960s when the company opted to consolidate its operations in Belfast. In the First World War and Wolff built monitors and cruisers, including the 15-inch gun armed "large light cruiser" HMS Glorious. In 1918, the company opened a new shipyard on the eastern side of the Musgrave Channel, named the East Yard; this yard specialised in mass-produced ships of standard design developed in the First World War. During the 1920s, Catholic workers were expelled from working in the shipyard.
The company started an aircraft manufacturing subsidiary with Short Brothers, called Short & Harland Limited in 1936. Its first order was for 189 Handley Page Hereford bombers built under licence from Handley Page for the Royal Air Force. In the Second World War, this factory built Short Stirling bombers as the Hereford was removed from service; the shipyard was busy in the Second World War, building six aircraft carriers, two cruisers and 131 other naval ships. It manufactured tanks and artillery components, it was in this period. However, many of the vessels built in this era were commissioned right at the end of World War II, as Harland and Wolff were focused on ship repair in the first three years of the war; the yard on Queen's Island was bombed by the Luftwaffe in April and May 1941 causing considerable damage to the shipbuilding facilities and destroying the aircraft factory. With the rise of the jet-powered airliner in the late 1950s, the demand for ocean liners declined. This, coupled with competition from Japan, led to difficulties for the British shipbuilding industry.
The last liner that the company launched was MV Arlanza for Royal Mail Line in 1960, whilst the last liner completed was SS Canberra for P&O in 1961. In the 1960s, notable achievements for the yard included the tanker Myrina, the first supertanker built in the UK and the largest vessel launched down a slipway, as it was in the September of 1967. In the same period the yard built the semi-submersible drilling rig Sea Quest which, due to its three-legged design, was launched down three parallel slipways; this was a first and only time this was done. In the mid-1960s, the British government started advancing loans and subsidies to British shipyards to preserve jobs; some of this money was used to finance the modernisation of the yard, allowing it to build the much larger post-war merchant ships including one of 333,000 tonnes. The shipyard had a reputation as a protestant factory, in 1970, during the Troubles, 500 Catholic workers were expelled from their role. Continuing problems led to the company's nationalisation, though not as part of British Shipbuilders, in 1977.
In 1971, the Arrol Gantry complex, within which many ships were built until the early 1960s, was demolished. The nationalised c