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Belfast City Hall in darkness to mark 80th anniversary of Blitz

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Belfast City Hall goes dark to mark 80th anniversary of the Blitz on April 15, 2021 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

Belfast City Hall goes dark to mark 80th anniversary of the Blitz on April 15, 2021 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

Kevin Scott / Belfast Telegraph

Belfast City Hall goes dark to mark 80th anniversary of the Blitz on April 15, 2021 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

Belfast City Hall goes dark to mark 80th anniversary of the Blitz on April 15, 2021 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

Kevin Scott / Belfast Telegraph

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Belfast City Hall goes dark to mark 80th anniversary of the Blitz on April 15, 2021 (Photo by Kevin Scott for Belfast Telegraph)

Belfast City Hall was plunged into darkness on Thursday evening to mark the 80th anniversary of the blitz in the city.

Two searchlights lit up the sky around the Belfast landmark from 9pm, with the striking beams visible in the night sky from right across the city.

In total, around 1,000 people lost their lives when German bombers shelled the city over a number of nights in April and May 1941. The devastation was so great that it also left 100,000 people homeless.

The city’s shipyards that were contributing to Britain’s war efforts made it a legitimate target for the Luftwaffe. The Belfast Blitz was the worst wartime raid outside of London in the UK.

Belfast was one of 16 cities across the UK to suffer as a result of the Blitz during World War Two.

Earlier on Thursday, the Lord Mayor of Belfast Alderman Frank McCoubrey placed wreaths on two mass graves in Belfast’s City Cemetery and Milltown Cemetery to remember those who lost their lives in the Blitz.

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Speaking at the commemoration, Lord Mayor Alderman Frank McCoubrey reflected on the lives lost, and the lives forever changed by the devastating raids.

He said: “Today we remember almost 1,000 people, mainly civilians, who lost their lives in the Belfast Blitz.

“There were four devastating Luftwaffe raids on Belfast in April and May 1941. The major raids, now known as the Easter Tuesday and fire raids are remembered most vividly. In some cases, entire families lost their lives, while others were left homeless and mourning the loss of loved ones, their lives changed forever.

“It’s important that we continue to mark the anniversary of the Blitz, to take time to pause and reflect on this major event in our city’s history, and the tragedy suffered by so many of our citizens.”

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Belfast Lord Mayor Alderman Frank McCoubrey at City Hall this evening, Thursday April 15 as the iconic building went dark to mark the 80th anniversary of the Belfast Blitz. Photo by Kelvin Boyes  / Press Eye.

Belfast Lord Mayor Alderman Frank McCoubrey at City Hall this evening, Thursday April 15 as the iconic building went dark to mark the 80th anniversary of the Belfast Blitz. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.

Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye

Belfast Lord Mayor Alderman Frank McCoubrey at City Hall this evening, Thursday April 15 as the iconic building went dark to mark the 80th anniversary of the Belfast Blitz. Photo by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.

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