Belfast Peace Walls

Antonio Olmos photographs the walls built across Northern Ireland’s capital city as a means of defusing sectarian tension. There are 99 of them, dividing nationalist Catholic neighbourhoods from loyalist Protestant ones. Some of the walls date from the early years of the Troubles, but an estimated one-third have gone up since the IRA ceasefire in 1994. Now, ‘peace gates’ are being opened in some walls in an attempt to foster greater links between communities.


The biggest peace wall in Belfast runs along Cupar Way. It divides the east Belfast loyalist area of Shankill Road from the Catholic Springfield/Falls Roads area of west Belfast.


A five-metre high wall and fence runs from the junction of Springfield Road and Springmartin Road to near Upper Ballygomartin Road, west Belfast. It can be seen for miles.


Another view of the Cupar Way wall.


Graffiti on the Cupar Way wall.


The peace wall with a fence above runs the length of Bryson Street from the junction of Lower Newtownards Road to Madrid Street, in east Belfast’s Short Strand.


The small loyalist enclave of Cluan Place sits within the Catholic Short Strand.


A steel fence, with a pedestrian access gate, closes off Navarra Place from Serpentine Road in north Belfast.


Duncairn Gardens in the New Lodge area of north Belfast has been a flashpoint for violence in the past.


Gardens and children’s play spaces beside the wall that runs towards Newtownabbey.


The Whitewell Road contains an interface area between the republican Whitewell and loyalist White City areas. Whitewell also borders on the loyalist Rathcoole estate.The biggest Peace Wall in Belfast is the wall that runs along Cupar Way. It divides the East Belfast Loyalist area of Shankill Road from the Springfield/Fall Roads Catholic Area of West Belfast.


The biggest Peace Wall in Belfast is the wall that runs along Cupar Way. It divides the East Belfast Loyalist area of Shankill Road from the Springfield/Fall Roads Catholic Area of West Belfast.


Steel makes the shape of a crucifix along Cupar Way, where the loyalist Shankill Road area is separated from the nationalist Springfield/Falls Roads.


The peace wall in Alexandra Park, Belfast. It is believed to be the only park in western Europe with a wall running through the middle of it.


The wall across Alexandra Park.


A council employee closes the gate that since September 2011 has allowed residents to cross between the Catholic and Protestant sides of Alexandra Park between 9am and 3pm.

Via http://observer.guardian.co.uk

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