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Heritage Tour - Laganside Courts

This is an image of Lagnaside Courts

Laganside Courts

The site of Laganside Courts has played a significant role in the public life of Belfast for over 200 years.

For most of the 1800s the area was used as a livestock market. In 1871 the Northern Ireland Fire Brigade acquired the site for a station for Belfast City. They chose the site as it was adjacent to the new Town Hall in Victoria Street, which had been constructed the year before.

this is an image of a the fire station that used to be on the site of Laganside Courts

The original fire station was replaced by a much larger building in 1894. Over the next 100 years the site continued to be used as a fire station, until the Northern Ireland Fire Brigade relocated from Chichester Street in 1992.

Laganside Courts opened in January 2002 and houses 6 Crown, 5 County and 5 Magistrates Courts in one venue. The concept behind the project is that greater efficiencies can be gained by bringing the business and staff together in one facility, operated and maintained by a private partner, thereby enabling court staff to focus on the core business.

This is an image of the corridor outside the magistrates courts in Laganside CourtsThis is an image of Laganside Courts at night

The new court complex provides excellent accommodation for all court users, including members of the public, the legal profession, and the judiciary.

Award Winning Design

Laganside Courts has already received 3 prestigious awards.

  • In 2000 it won the Private Finance Initiative Award, competing against a number of major Public Private Partnership projects across the United Kingdom.
  • It was the 2002 winner of the Royal Society of Ulster Architects award for projects with a construction value of over £2.5m.
  • It was also awarded the Liam McCormick Prize for Building of the Year 2002.


Laganside Courts, on the waterfront opposite the Royal Courts of Justice, is a landmark building that affords particularly impressive views of the River Lagan and the waterfront. While the facility is a civic building the modern architectural design is very much in keeping with the regeneration of the area, yet it equally complements the historic Royal Courts of Justice close by which were officially opened in 1933.

This is an image of Laganside Courts from across the river lagan

The contemporary design of the building provides a modern and comfortable environment for the administration of justice, which will serve the justice system for many years to come.

This is an image of the interior of Laganside Courts

Laganside Courts make full use of state of the art technology.

Two 'high tech' Crown Courts deploy the most advanced technology for courtrooms in Europe, which allows for the presentation of digital evidence and the hearing of witness testimony from virtually anywhere in the world.

This is an image of a crown court in Laganside Courts

In addition to sixteen courtrooms Laganside Courts provide specialised accommodation for victims of crime, children and vulnerable and intimidated witnesses.

this is an image of the interior of Laganside Courts

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