BELFAST – DAY 3.

Sunday, June 23.

Left Bess at the park and ride and caught the glider bus into the city. Off to look through the Crumlin Road Gaol, before heading to Dublin.

The main block of the prison in which all the offices were on the bottom floor and the chapel on the top floor.

A and B wings.

C and D wings.

Following are who and the conditions and time in which the gaol operated.

The Wardens office.

Always reading.

The first governor, a Mr Forbes, who served for 27 years..

The reception area where all prisoners were divested of all their worldly goods into a sack which had their prison number on it. They would be from then on only referred to by that number. The bag would hold there close until they were released, if they were lucky.

A lucky one, allowed to leave at the end of the day.

During the time of the troubles, you could be interred for no reason and for an indeterminate time. At the wardens discretion. Check our the original floor.

Tunnel connections to the court house on the other side of Crumlin Road. This enabled prisoners to be moved without exposure to the public.

This way please, mind your head.

But it wasn’t me!

The section under the road was strengthened with reinforced concrete to protect it from car bombs during the troubled times.

The courthouse across the road which has fallen into disrepair, but is soon to be restored and turned into a hotel.

The semi circle where all the wings meet.

Looking down C wing.

Cells through the ages.

This would have been sheer agony.

This cell you would not want to be in, the death cell. Prisoners would be held in here until the execution takes place and would only have 12 hours notice before they were executed.

The gallows were through a sliding wardrobe in the cells bathroom. So once the prisoner entered the cell they did not leave.

As is the custom world wide, executed prisoners are buried in the prison grounds in unmarked graves, although one was mysteriously marked by someone. If you look carefully you can see the initials M P 1924. Michael Pratley was executed on 8th May 1924.

List of who were executed at Crumlin Road Gaol.

Artefacts from the gaols history.

Including this book by Dr. Ian Paisley.

Notice that the wall has been added to. One of the prisoners escaped and the Warden ordered the wall to be raised.

Fifty years later, in 2012, after he became a successful businessman and was pardoned by the state, he came back in a tour group with his grandchildren to show them how he was responsible for changing the architecture of the prison.

This sign was outside the restaurant in the prison. Someone has a sense of humour.

Back into town, grabbed a bite and then out to Bess for two hour drive to Dublin.

The largest Celtic Cross in Europe.

For all you Game of Thrones fans. This is one of six glass panels around the city.

The front of city hall.

Dublin, here we come.

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