A bronze plaque commemorating the foundation of the Academy in 1785, has been sited close to St Anne’s Cathedral, and near the location of the School’s original building.
It was unveiled on Wednesday 20th May 2015, by Mr D Simon, the oldest member of the Old Boys’ Association, in the presence of his daughter Shirley and son Geoff, the Headmaster and two former Headmasters, Mr W Young, and Mr W Sillery. Members of the Old Boys’ Association and the Board of Governors were present, as was the Dean of St Anne’s.
In his remarks, the Headmaster thanked the Dean and Board of the Cathedral for their support and noted that, “It was a radical age, and a time of auspicious beginnings. In 1785 the first edition of The Times was published, under the less catchy title, The Daily Universal Register, the dollar was chosen as the currency of the United States, Napoleon became a lieutenant in the French artillery, the first balloon crossed the English Channel – and The Belfast Academy was founded. Coming to this site this afternoon, we are standing in the footsteps of the founders of our school; we share their optimism, and their belief in the transformative power of education.”
He also thanked Mr Carolan, Dr Hill and Mr Clegg, from the school staff, the Board of Governors and the Old Boys’ Association respectively, for their commitment to the project.