Belfast Telegraph

On the Grapevine - November 6

by Billy Dickson, Des Meredith & Brian Dunwoody

Donegall Road

As we approach this year’s Remembrance Sunday commemoration, the Donegall Road Grapevine took a trip down memory lane with Sandy Row man Billy McBride.

Billy is one of the few people left on Sandy Row to remember the twin air raid shelters situated under the Linfield Road.

Residents from both sides of the community relied on the two long concrete chambers, which ran from Murray’s Tobacco Factory to Railway Street.

Billy went into one shelter with his grandmother Lizzie Chambers and his sister, Georgina.

“I remember everyone was sitting on wooden benches along the walls of the chamber,” Billy told the Donegall Road Grapevine.

“A man who lived at the corner of Linfield Road and Sandy Row played a very large piano accordion and everyone joined in singing, ‘Roll out the Barrel’. This quickly changed to ‘Nearer, My God, to Thee’ as the bombs started to fall on the city.”

Unfortunately a landmine hit houses in Blythe Street on April 18, 1941, killing five people.

The film ‘Mrs Miniver’, which is based on the wartime experiences of a middle class family in 1942, will be shown at the Sandy Row Community Centre’s Senior Citizens’ Group on Friday, November 6, at 10.30am.

Richview Church’s Missionary Sale takes place on Saturday, November 8, at 10.15am in Pembroke Street Hall.

Admission is £1 which includes tea and coffee. Everyone welcome.


Belvoir Library presents another Bookstart scheme for the under-fours, entitled ‘Rhythm & Rhymetime’.

Taking place tomorrow (Friday, November 7) from 10.30am to 11am, all children must be accompanied by an adult.

Contact the library on 9064 4331.

The Citizens Advice Bureau returns to the Mount Oriel Clinic, Saintfield Road, on Tuesday, November 11, from 1.30pm to 4.30pm.

Bevoir's Housing Surgery takes place on Wednesday, November 12, from 10am to 12noon at the Belvoir Activity Centre.

The Belvoir Parents’ Support Group will be launched on Friday, November 14, from 10am to 12noon in Belvoir Activity Centre, Belvoir Drive.

The group is aimed at the parents of children with Autism or Asperger's Syndrome.

For more information, contact Rowena Frazer on 9096 2428.

Belvoir Community Tree Planting Day takes place on Saturday, November 15, at 10.30am meeting in the small carpark opposite Belvoir Primary School.

Rangers from Lagan Valley Regional Park will be on hand to help plant young trees grown from acorns collected from Belvoir’s veteran oaks.

You are advised to wear warm clothing and sensible footwear, and to bring a snack or drink. The event is set to last for a few hours.

For more information, contact Jo on 90491922 or email

The staff at the Community Association for Belvoir Milltown and Newtownbreda (CABNM) would like to thank everyone who attended its AGM at the Belvoir Clinic last week.

CABNM would like to remind everyone that the Community House at 1a Kilwarlin Crescent is open on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9am to 12noon.

If you require support with any local community or social issues, or require social security, housing or grant application forms, we have all you will need in the Community House.

Lagan Valley Regional Park staff will be continuing the popular series of Discovery Morning walks on the last Friday of every month.

The next walk meets at Shaw's Bridge carpark at 11am on Friday, November 7.

Belfast Telegraph


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