Belfast & Northern Ireland

Commercial Court

  off Donegall St     more than a year ago
This tiny cobbled Cathedral Quarter alleyway is one of the city's most historic entries. As the name suggests, the area was once Belfast's commercial heart, and several bronze panels pay homage to the pottery, whiskey merchants and old iron foundry that once occupied its narrow streets.

Italian Immigrants who ran the cock-fighting pit at the end of the entry would probably have stopped by for a pint in the Duke of York bar, and the local rag and bone man of the 1960s certainly did..... in fact his horse once even tried to get inside the pub having waited outside so long!

Over the years, newspapers have also made their home here and, to this day, the area is regarded as Belfast's Fleet Street. The Belfast Telegraph, Irish News and Sunday World have been or still are, based close by, making the Duke of York a regular watering hole for lawyers, judges, politicians, trade unionists and journalists.

The history of the area is reflected in the artefacts that bedeck the walls of 'The Duke'. Items from the printing industry vie for space with sporting programmes and bar memorabilia in the Public Bar, while the Glory Hole features a mosaic of William Butler Yeats' Poem He Wishes For The Cloths Of Heaven using carved wooden letters originally intended for coffin lids. In summer, the alley's multitude of hanging baskets bloom forth, making this hidden spot one of the prettiest in Belfast. Seek and enjoy.

Amenities

City centre location

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