Construction began in 1898 under the supervision of architect Sir Alfred Brumwell Thomas and was completed in 1906 at a cost of £369,000. Local firms H&J Martin and WH Stephens were among the companies involved in construction.
Featuring towers at each of the four corners, with a lantern-crowned brass dome in the centre, the City Hall dominates the city centre skyline. As with other Victorian buildings in the city centre, the City Hall's copper-coated domes are a distinctive green. The pediment sculpture is by F. W. Pomeroy.
Carrara, Pavonazzo and Brescia marbles are used extensively throughout the building as are stained glass windows featuring among others the Belfast Coat of Arms, portraits of Queen Victoria and King William III and shields of the Provinces of Ireland.
The gardens surrounding the City Hall are a popular with office workers taking their lunch in the summer months, as well as tourists and teenagers gathering in their dozens to enjoy the green.
Various statues stand in the grounds, including one of Queen Victoria by Sir Thomas Brock. There is also a granite column dedicated to the American Expeditionary Force, many of whom were based in Belfast prior to D-Day.
Brock also designed the marble figure of Thane, in memorial to the victims of the sinking of the RMS Titanic. The ship was built in Harland and Wolff's shipyard located in the east of the city. The monument was originally located at the front gate of City Hall, at the junction of Donegall Square North and Donegall Place.
James Magennis VC, the only Northern Irish recipient of the Victoria Cross during World War II, is also commemorated in the grounds. The Leading Seaman won the medal while serving in the Far East in 1945. A six-foot high memorial to Magennis, made from Portland stone and bronze, stands in front of the City Hall. It was erected in 1999.
On January 3 2006 Belfast City Councillors ratified a plan to erect a statue to the late Belfast footballer George Best in the grounds of the City Hall. Following approval from the Best family, the George Best Memorial Trust was created in December 2006. The trust's patron David Healy contributed £1,000 to the estimated total cost of £200,000.
In October 2007 a 60 m Ferris wheel was constructed in the grounds, giving passengers panoramic views above the city. The wheel has 42 air-conditioned capsules, which can hold up to six adults and two children. It is due to remain until November 2008.
NOW YOU SEE IT NOW YOU DON'T; LOYALIST PROTEST STILL RAGING; Flag Flies for 11 Hours at Belfast City Hall.But Not at Stormont
Jan 10, 2013; THE Union flag flew over Belfast City Hall yesterday - but failed to appear at Stormont. It was hoisted over the civic HQ from...