THE GASWORKS CROMAC STREET BELFAST – MAY 2015
The Gasworks distinctive funnel and clock tower mark the place where the city’s gas-making industry began production in the 19th century. The area offers a quiet place to escape from the bustle of the nearby city centre and makes an ideal starting point for a pleasant walk or cycle along the River Lagan towards Donegall Quay or upstream towards the Lagan Towpath and Lagan Valley Regional Park.
Gasworks has been the site of Belfast’s gas-making industry since the 19th century. The site, built on ground owned by the Marquis of Donegall, opened in 1822 and supplied gas for street lighting and domestic and industrial use.
Belfast Corporation (now the Belfast City Council) used their profits from the gas industry to pay for the construction of Belfast City Hall, which opened in 1906.
By the end of World War II in 1945, around 120,000 people were using gas from the Gasworks site. However, by the 1960s, demand declined as new technologies began to emerge and production finally stopped altogether in 1985.
The Gasworks site was purchased by the council, together with central government and the Laganside Corporation, in the early 1990s. The land was considered unsuitable for most uses, due to contamination, but a major refurbishment programme, part-funded by the European Union, soon turned the area into a modern business park.