The Heritage Of Innovation
How FinTrU's sites are steeped in invention
NO PLACE LIKE DOME: The new cast iron and hand painted glass dome at Meter House is a reconstruction of the original
Humanity wouldn’t have come very far without innovation. Since the dawn of time, we have innovated, be it through the necessity to survive or the chance to attain greater things. Once upon a time an early ancestor, rubbed a couple of sticks together and made the first human-made fire. This key innovation provided a much-needed source of heat, a light in the darkness, protection from predators, and, soon enough, a source to barbecue them with too – many anthropologists believing the consumption of cooked meat led to a huge growth spurt in the intelligence department.
While the definition of innovation is the new and looking forward, looking back on our heritage is a reminder of past innovation. Our FinTrU offices, both in the North West and Belfast, were home to different types of such innovation and although we’re in a very different industry, innovation continues on these sites today.
CITY FACTORY, NORTH WEST
City Factory was integral to the textiles industry boom of the mid-19th Century. One of the original factories in Derry/Londonderry during this period, it became the principal seat of the UK shirt industry, supplying not only nationwide but to Europe and the British colonies as well.
After opening on the corner of Queen Street and Patrick Street in 1863, by the 1870s the firm [McIntyre & Hogg] was employing 600 workers in City Factory. By 1901, the factory space had doubled in size taking the employee count to 800.
Despite several changes in ownership down the years, the production of shirts and other textiles continued at City Factory until it closed its doors to the industry in 1998. Today, the building and shirt-making industry remain an important part of the city’s heritage.
THE GASWORKS, BELFAST
For more than a century and a half, the Gasworks was Belfast's central source of power that enabled the city's rapid economic growth and put Belfast at the centre of Victorian commerce. The Gasworks, through the coal gas created on the site, powered street lights across the city and fed the multiple factories that helped build the city's economic success. By the end of the Second World War 120,000 customers were being supplied with gas. Production declined over the years and gas production finally stopped on the site in 1985.
The Gasworks is now the main base of FinTrU's Belfast division. Alongside the head office of FinTrU House, the site is also home to two new spaces of innovation.
History of Meter House
The Meter House is a listed building that was designed in 1887 by Robert Wall. Based in the Gasworks site, Meter House originally housed the meters which recorded Belfast's gas consumption. The profits made through Meter House contributed to largely paying for the building of Belfast City Hall. When the Gasworks were shut down Meter House fell into a state of dereliction but a four-year restoration project saw the building completely restored to its former glory.
Undoubtedly the most striking feature of the Meter House building is the spectacular cast-iron dome which features hand painted stained glass designs.
Meter House - FinTrU Innovation Hub
Situated in the historical Meter House building in the Gasworks site in Belfast, the FinTrU Innovation Hub is a focal point for employee collaboration, engagement and creative problem solving. The FinTrU Innovation Hub is a state-of-the-art facility that enables employees to engage in creative problem-solving activities with hybrid-friendly technology-enabled platforms catering for collaboration across multiple sites. This is a fully configurable collaboration space which can be flexibly changed to accommodate different sizes of groups.
FinTrU Tech Hub
Our newest space of operations at the Gasworks is the Tech Hub. With the Technology arm of FinTrU getting bigger by the day, this is an area that is dedicated to Tech thinking, working and innovation.
INTO OBLIVION: Josh's favourite piece of his own work
METER MAKEOVER: Meter House was in a state of dereliction before its refurbishment was completed in 2007
NOW AND THEN: City Factory is still home to innovation
INNER CITY: FinTrU's refurbished canteen inside City Factory
If you would like to come and join us at FinTrU you can find all our current vacancies here: FinTrU Careers | Financial Services & FinTech Careers
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