History and Heritage of Orangefield Park

Orangefield Park – In 1938, Belfast Corporation (now Belfast City Council) bought part of the Orangefield estate from its then owners, the Blakiston- Houston family, to develop as a public park. Development plans were put on hold during World War II. The American Army was based here and trained in Orangefield Park from 1942-44. A German Prisoner of War camp was set up nearby. Today the park’s features include horticultural displays and a children’s playground. Orangefield Park Playing Fields, located within the park, contain a bowling green, soccer pitches, tennis courts and a cycling and BMX track.

Orangefield Velodrome – This 396 metre outdoor banked oval track is the only surviving facility of its kind in Northern Ireland. It opened for competition in 1957 and was used extensively throughout the 1950s and 1960s when track cycling was extremely popular. It continues to be used today. It was re-named the Tommy Givan track in 1981 in honour of the former National Track Champion, one of the stalwarts of track cycling in Belfast.