Titanic offices in Belfast are restored in £5m project

By Julian O'Neill
BBC News NI Business Correspondent

image copyrightNMNI/Titanic Foundation
image captionThe offices had been vacant since 1989 but the building is being renovated into a hotel

A £5m renovation project has returned the historic drawing offices at Belfast shipyard to the glory of a century ago.

The two arched rooms were at the heart of the old Harland and Wolff headquarters building.

media captionA £5m renovation project has restored the historic drawing offices

More than 1,000 ships, including Titanic and HMS Belfast, were designed in the rooms, which fell into disrepair when the HQ became vacant in 1989.

They have been restored as part of a project to transform the building into a new hotel.

image copyrightNMNI
image captionAn archive photograph shows the building's presentation room

The rooms will soon open to the public as part of visitor tours, as well as serving as function rooms for the hotel.

Six other "key heritage rooms", including the office of Thomas Andrews, will also be publicly accessible.

The former shipyard managing director died on board Titanic in 1912.

The restoration project has been supported by Heritage Lottery Fund cash.

image copyrightTitanic foundation
image captionOne of the restored rooms is the office of the Titanic's designer Thomas Andrews

Paul Mullan, head of the fund in Northern Ireland, said: "It is wonderful to see the final elements coming together.

"This will be another world-class maritime and industrial heritage attraction for visitors."

The building at Queen's Island will open in September.

image copyrightTitanic foundation
image captionThe renovation project has been supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund

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