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Regenerating Belfast's Sailortown

14 June 2010

Residents of Belfast's historic Sailortown are inviting architecture students at the University of Ulster to create inspirational designs for St Joseph's Church, a landmark in the area.

Sailortown Regeneration Group are inviting submissions for a design competition to regenerate St Joseph’s Church in the Clarendon Dock area of North Belfast, into a community hub for the local residents and the wider Belfast area.

The competition calls for schemes which will help to influence the final design of the church and is open to all Part1 and placement year Architecture students from the University of Ulster and QUB.

The competition seeks a proposal for a multi-functional building serving as community space, sacred prayer space, office use and recreational/ commercial use including a cafe.

The judges are looking for inspirational designs which will attract people into the Sailortown area and provide attractive, sustainable solutions for the local community’s needs.

Judging the entries will be Mark Hackett (Forum for Alternative Belfast), Des Ewing (BBC TV presenter) and Stephen Douglas (Hall Black Douglas Architects).

Mark Hackett said: " Competitions are a good way for young architects to hone their skills. As a judge, I'm not looking for glitz or wacky ideas, but for something that really deals with core issues on the project."

Sailortown Regeneration Group's Cheryl Gourley said: "We want to bring some fresh ideas to re-establish the church back into Belfast again. It's a great opportunity to bring the church in alongside all the other regenerated areas in the city."

The group plan an exhibition be hosted in the church, in the second week September 2010, run in conjunction with European Heritage week.

The top ten entries, along with 1st, 2nd and 3rd places will be announced at the Open Evening in the church on 9th September 2010.

Supporting documents can be found online at