Author Topic: Belfast pubs  (Read 2349 times)

AnnSharonClare

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Belfast pubs
« on: November 27, 2016, 11:08:51 PM »
My great grandparents I understand ran a number of pubs in the north one being the Brittania in Belfast . He was called Robert Stronge a very big man by all accounts. I would be very interested to know about this pub, whether it still stands and what it was like.

Bigali

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2016, 12:06:52 AM »
My great grandparents I understand ran a number of pubs in the north one being the Brittania in Belfast . He was called Robert Stronge a very big man by all accounts. I would be very interested to know about this pub, whether it still stands and what it was like.

North of where ? Where was this Brittannia and where were the other pubs in Belfast ?
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CMcG

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2016, 08:54:28 AM »
The following newspaper notice from August 1931 confirms the address of 'The Britannia Bar' as 61 Newtownards Road:



You can see it listed in the 1924 Belfast street directory on the Lennon Wylie website, on the Newtownards Road as '61 Stronge, R., publican' at the link below (note that an R. Stronge was also occupying no. 59):

http://www.lennonwylie.co.uk/images/1924BSD/1924strs%200247.jpg

R. Stronge was also shown at that address in the 1918 street directory, but not the 1910 directory.  Turning to the 1911 census, the only man with that name in the area was this one, a tobacconist and newsagent:

http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1911/Down/Victoria__part_of_/Newtownards_Road/226186/

As it happens, this looks like the right man, for when an engineer called  Robert George Strong (note the son of that name in the census return who was a mechanic) got married to an Agnes Hamilton in Townsend Street Presbyterian Church in 1918, he cited his father as Robert Stronge, a publican, as can be seen in the marriage certificate below:

https://civilrecords.irishgenealogy.ie/churchrecords/images/marriage_returns/marriages_1918/09708/5521881.pdf

And in 1901, the same Robert Stronge was a barman:

http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1901/Down/Pottinger/Montrose_Street/1261280/

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CMcG

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2016, 09:16:37 AM »
And just to confirm that the couple in the 1901 and 1911 census returns were Robert Stronge and Annie Hall who got married in St. Thomas' Church of Ireland Belfast in 1893, details including their fathers are in the marriage certificate below, their subsequent childrens' births can also be found on the same website:

https://civilrecords.irishgenealogy.ie/churchrecords/images/marriage_returns/marriages_1893/10603/5863024.pdf

There is a couple buried in Dundonald Cemetery with the right names and in the ballpark age-wise, just a possibility to note until they can be ruled in or out:

https://ssl.belfastcity.gov.uk/burialsearch/BurialSearch.aspx?GraveSection=C4&GraveNumber=752&CemeteryName=Dundonald%20Cemetery

And if them, then this in the PRONI Will Calendars:

Stronge Annie Jane of 44 Seacliffe Road Bangor county Down widow died 4 October 1939 Probate Belfast 24 May to Annie Douglas married woman. Effects 496 8s. 4d.

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McNamee

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2016, 09:47:40 AM »
My God I am impressed CMcG.....Brilliant

CMcG

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2016, 10:26:10 AM »

My God I am impressed CMcG.....Brilliant


The fiver's in the post.  ;)
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CMcG

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2016, 10:30:56 AM »
Regarding 'The Britannia' at 61 Newtownards Road, the area around it has been redeveloped.  If you look at the old street directories, you can see that no. 61 was at the bottom (Belfast) end of the Newtownards Road.  Robert Stronge occupied 2 properties beside each other (59 and 61) which were beside Young's Row. According to the street directories, a bit further on up the Newtownards Road on the same side  (heading out of Belfast) were Seaforde Street, Bryson Street and Susan Street.

In the following map extract from 1931, the Newtownards Road is running left-right along the top, in addition to the streets I mentioned above, you can see the Short Strand on the left, Mountpottinger Road rising up at a slant from the bottom and Vulcan Street above centre. As it isn't explicitly named, I've highlighted Young's Row with a red line (I found Young's Row on another map, it was connected to Vulcan Street by Saul Street).  Nos. 59 and 61 Newtownards Road would have been to the right of the red line. Although the area is heavily redeveloped, the street names and alignments that survive today should be sufficient for you to find the location by playing around with google maps and google streetview.

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CMcG

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #7 on: November 28, 2016, 11:05:32 AM »
Looks like Robert tried to sell the business in 1924 (local newspaper notice in August of that year):



This indicates that nos. 59 and 61 were separate pubs, albeit beside each other.  What I do know is that 'The Britannia' continued to have that name long, long after Robert Stronge owned it, so I imagine there may be folk on this forum who might remember it or 'The Arch'.

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CMcG

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #8 on: November 28, 2016, 11:30:59 AM »

... There is a couple buried in Dundonald Cemetery with the right names and in the ballpark age-wise, just a possibility to note until they can be ruled in or out:

https://ssl.belfastcity.gov.uk/burialsearch/BurialSearch.aspx?GraveSection=C4&GraveNumber=752&CemeteryName=Dundonald%20Cemetery


I think the folk in the above Dundonald Cemetery grave may well be them, since the grave record shows Robert Stronge buried on 2 March 1934 and the following newspaper article on 3 March 1934 says that, although living in Merville, Whitehouse (North Belfast) prior to death, he 'had been a prominent figure in East Belfast':



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CMcG

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #9 on: November 28, 2016, 11:52:38 AM »

... What I do know is that 'The Britannia' continued to have that name long, long after Robert Stronge owned it, so I imagine there may be folk on this forum who might remember it or 'The Arch' ...


Looks like 'The Britannia' was badly damaged by a bomb in 1972:

http://twicsy.com/i/Z6AjLj

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CMcG

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #10 on: November 28, 2016, 12:15:29 PM »
Parts of Belfast in the early 1920s were rough, given the prevailing political situation.  Robert Stronge's bars were no exception, as these two snippets from that era show:



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fred g

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #11 on: November 28, 2016, 02:01:49 PM »
in its later days it was owned by rwo Bros Dan and Joe Ward who later moved to donaghadee. I can remember my grandfather when he was alive talking about it as he drank there in the 20's up to about 1970

AnnSharonClare

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2017, 12:11:30 AM »
Thank you so much for all your help with this information it's been really useful for me and my cousins who are researching our family. We are coming very soon to Belfast for the first time from England and Canada !

CMcG

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #13 on: July 17, 2017, 07:30:09 AM »
You're welcome, I'm afraid that the links to the images I previously posted here no longer work, since recently and suddenly the 'Photobucket' website, where I uploaded the images, changed its Terms of Use to start charging $400 per year to allow such links to forums like this to continue working.

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AnnSharonClare

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Re: Belfast pubs
« Reply #14 on: July 17, 2017, 07:37:24 AM »
Wow 400 a year! That's ridiculous ☹️ I wondered why the links weren't working when I clicked on them! Thank you McG.
We did wonder about your name as a branch of the family is McGee ... is this purely coincidence ?