These are the famous landmark gantry cranes that dominate the Belfast skyline. Samson and Goliath are named after Biblical figures and are located on Queen’s Island in the Harland & Wolff shipyard. They were constructed by the German engineering firm Krupp, Goliath was built in 1969 and Samson in 1974. Goliath stands 315 ft tall, while Samson is 348 ft. In the late 1960’s and early 1970’s Harland & Wolff was one of the largest shipbuilders in the world boasting 35,000 employees with a healthy order book. The announcement that the cranes were to be built was an important event at this time as ‘The Troubles’ were raging and inward investment was at a very low point. By the mid 1970’s however, the shipbuilding industry went into a steep decline worldwide and this was catastrophic for H&W. The last ship built in this yard rolled down the slipway in March 2003. The cranes are now protected under the Historic Monuments Act of Northern Ireland and will forever proudly stand adjacent to Belfast’s incredible new Titanic Quarter.

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