Thursday, 26 January 2012

Trains, Ships and Automobiles

Often when the Easter weekend arrives in Ireland I used to have a short trip to see the opening stage of the Circuit of Ireland. Scrutineering would often happen in Bangor Leisure Centre's car park before the cars would head off around Castle Park to get things started before the cars headed off out into the country for the stages over the next three days. Sometime returning to the Marine Court Hotel for the champagne celebrations.

This year I will not have a walk to see the start, but I don't mind. This year the opening stage is starting within sight of the Titanic Signature Project around what is currently a derelict piece of land on Queen's Island a stones throw from the drafting offices of Harland and Wolff. I'm looking forward to catching the train up, to the great historic heart of ship manufacturing in Belfast, to watch the cars whizz around this tight circuit.

Seeing as this is the centenary of the launching of the Titanic near this location and the first time in over 20 years that the Circuit of Ireland has started from Belfast is a sign of how much things have changed here. Belfast is buzzing and its quarters are alive with various events throughout the year. Next year I wonder if the circuit will start out of the City of Culture?

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