Sunday, 3 January 2016

Castlereagh: Statesman

Thank heaven the sun is finally showing its face.

It has been raining consistently and quite heavily in Belfast today.

Hence, I decided to pay St George's Market a visit.

This market, located in central Belfast in an island site between Oxford, May, Verner, and East Bridge streets, is one of the city's main attractions.

It was built between 1890-96.

The Sunday Market opens at 10am  and closes at 4pm.

There is a mixture of the traditional Friday Variety Market and Saturday’s City Food and Craft Market.

It has a particular emphasis on local arts and crafts, offering local craftspeople the opportunity to show off their talents.

Live music from top local bands and solo artists also ensures that visitors are kept entertained.

Products on sale include local, continental and speciality foods, scented candles, clothes, handmade jewellery, antiques, art, and souvenirs.

Whilst passing a book stall, my eyes were immediately drawn to a large hardback book entitled Castlereagh, by John Bew.

As it transpires, a fellow browser accosted me with the item in my hand, and remarked upon its considerable size.

I retorted by advising him that it was required for bashing a persistent ganglion on my wrist; in lieu of The Holy Bible.

I think he thought I was blaspheming. There's Belfast humour for you.

I'm assuming - and I stand to be corrected - that the author is the Hon John Bew, son of the Lord Bew.

I encounter Paul, Lord Bew, occasionally at Old Brackenbrian annual dinners in the Ulster Reform Club.

I'm expecting that Castlereagh shall be a very "good read" for me, given my interest in, and fondness for, Mount Stewart and the Londonderrys.

Lord Castlereagh succeeded his father as 2nd Marquess of Londonderry in 1821.

1 comment :

Christopher Bellew said...

Tim, I hope it is a Good Read. If it's not already in your library, "A World Restored: Metternich, Castlereagh and the Problems of Peace 1812-1822, by Henry Kissinger (yes, that Henry Kissinger) is worth a glance. HK is an acknowledged expert on Lord Londonderry, unlikely though that may seem.