Belfast Telegraph

Mandela Hall memories: Fans say farewell with one final gig

There were emotional scenes on Friday night as hundreds of music fans gathered to say a fond farewell to one of Belfast's oldest music venues.

The Mandela Hall hosted its final live concert, with the final Shine dance music event taking place in the venue on Saturday.

The farewell concert was split over two stages, featuring the likes of David C Clements, Ryan Vail and And So I Watch You From Afar.

The basement venue in the Students' Union building at Queen's University is vanishing as part of a major redevelopment.

Over nearly five decades the Mandela, which was known as the McMordie Hall until 1986, has hosted some of the world's top local and international acts.

Down the years stars including U2, The Clash, Ed Sheeran, Radiohead, Snow Patrol, Calvin Harris, Nile Rodgers, Franz Ferdinand and Mumford And Sons have played in the 1,000-capacity venue.

Stars including Undertone Michael Bradley, Annie Mac, And So I Watch You From Afar and Ryan Vail took to social media to say farewell to the popular venue.

Demolition work is scheduled to start next month at the Students' Union, which was the nerve centre for civil rights activists at the university in the late 1960s.

The new purpose-built student centre and students' union is due to open in 2021 to cater for the university's 24,000 student population. In the meantime, the Elmwood Hall will be pressed into service as an alternative students' union and there will be additional facilities for a Speakeasy and club.

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