Are 95% or 98% of all households in the Holylands area of Belfast HMOs?

CLAIM: About 95% or 98% of all households in the Holylands area of Belfast are HMOs. 

CONCLUSION: INACCURATE. FactCheckNI has estimated that 45% of properties in the Holylands are licensed as HMOs, and Belfast City Council report a figure of 40% for the larger Botanic, Holylands and Rugby policy area. Continue reading Are 95% or 98% of all households in the Holylands area of Belfast HMOs?

Does the tech sector employ 26% of the workforce in Belfast?

CLAIM: In Belfast, the digital sector employs 26 per cent of the workforce.

CONCLUSION: INACCURATE. The newspaper article misinterprets the Tech Nation “Jobs and Skills Report 2020”, which states that for Belfast, from June to August 2020, 26% of job adverts at the online search site Adzuna were in the category of IT and engineering jobs. Using the most recent figures available from NISRA, we estimate that 8% of the workforce in Belfast is employed in jobs that fall into this category.

UPDATE: The Times corrected its article, in response to our request. Its updated article states that in Belfast, the tech sector makes up 26 per cent of vacancies, not overall employment.

Continue reading Does the tech sector employ 26% of the workforce in Belfast?

Did 20,000 people participate in an anti-abortion march in Belfast?

CLAIM: 20,000 people marched for a pro-life event in Belfast on 7 September 2019.

CONCLUSION: UNSUBSTANTIATED. The figure provided by the event organiser cannot be substantiated. However, the accompanying rally event at Custom House Square could not have been attended by more than the venue capacity of 5,000 people. Continue reading Did 20,000 people participate in an anti-abortion march in Belfast?

Is Derry/Londonderry rail service substandard?

CLAIM: The railway service for Derry/Londonderry is substandard to services east of the River Bann, according to campaign group, Into the West Rail Lobby.

CONCLUSION: ACCURATE WITH CONSIDERATION. FactCheckNI interprets “substandard” as “less frequency and access”. Of the six claims made, four are accurate, one is accurate with consideration (there are fewer trains from Belfast during peak hours), and one was inaccurate (through ticketing to Dublin is available at staffed stations, including Derry/Londonderry). Continue reading Is Derry/Londonderry rail service substandard?

Six minutes to clear security screening at George Best Belfast City Airport?

CLAIM: Since October 2018, George Best Belfast City Airport has repeated its claim that passengers pass through the security search area in an average of six minutes.

CONCLUSION: UNSUBSTANTIATED. As a private company with no regulatory requirement to share detailed information, the airport chooses not to reveal detailed data that would allow the average calculation to be substantiated over time. As a result, we can neither prove nor disprove the accuracy of the six-minute claim. Continue reading Six minutes to clear security screening at George Best Belfast City Airport?

25% reduction in public transport journey times?

CLAIM: Translink spoke about their hope that the Glider would reduce journey times on public transport by 25%.

CONCLUSION: ACCURATE WITH CONSIDERATION. The current journey time between Dundonald Park & Ride to Belfast city centre has been reduced by 24% (from 45 minutes to 34 minutes). For the McKinstry roundabout to Belfast city centre route, the journey time has been reduced by 7%, affected by the Bank Buildings fire. Continue reading 25% reduction in public transport journey times?