Author Topic: Belfast Lighting  (Read 316 times)


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Belfast Lighting
« on: August 03, 2008, 10:26:19 PM »
From The Story of Belfast by Mary Lowry (circa 1913)

Belfast Lighting

After a lapse of many years, when the White Linen Hall was used as a kind of People's Park, and Donegall Place was known as the "Flags," and was the fashionable promenade for the town, the military band performed for two hours in the central vacant place at the entrance gates. Sunday evening was the favourite time. It is natural to suppose that such a gay scene required more extensive illuminations than "Lanthorns " provided, so oil lamps were placed in the iron standards of the railings which enclosed the Linen Hall. An oil lamp burning every twenty yards all round the building made it a pleasant place, and shed a dim religious light over the crowds.
When gas lamps were substituted for the oil, it was considered a great step forward, and so it was, for the gas burned steadily except on the rare occasions of a street riot, when unruly boys thought it was a great joke to smash the lamps and leave the mob in total darkness.
Gas had one great advantage over the oil, for it burned as long as it was required, whereas the oil was an uncertain quantity, and lamps had a bad habit of going out and leaving a smoky wick to perfume the atmosphere with a very doubtful fragrance. It was an exciting evening when the streets were lighted with gas for the first time. The Town Council turned out to see the effect, and the members walked arm in arm along the streets admiring the illuminations and very proud indeed of such a brilliant town.
Now even gas is hiding its diminished radiance in presence of electric light. So we progress step by step, and who can foretell what the generations to come may use to light Belfast in the future? From the open river and the wooden pipes to our magnificent water supply of the present time, and from the small candle stuck in the window-pane to the great globes of light as bright as noon-day, is a wonderful change, and we pause to ask, what will come next?

Anybody any Idea What Comes Next ? ::)  Town Council Members walking arm in arm ( No Way ) ;)


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