A taste of France as the boules roll in Belfast


Pétanque, the French Boules game making a resurgence in towns and cities across Europe, has reached Blackstaff Square in Belfast’s Linen Quarter.

In summer 2022, Linen Quarter Business Improvement District (LQ BID), installed a Pétanque Piste at Blackstaff Square. The Piste is available for all and the rules, including a how-to video, can be found on the LQ BID website, while Boules are available for the public to rent from the nearby Acton & Sons Restaurant.

The BID recently held a wine and cheese event alongside the Irish Pétanque Association, where it invited nearby businesses for a taster session and to learn the rules of the game, ahead of what it hopes will be the first inaugural Inter-Company Tournament, taking place in August and September.

Sixteen organisations from across the Linen Quarter will be competing over various lunchtimes for a number of prizes including Belfast City Centre Giftcards, and a £200 voucher for the Grand Central Hotel Observatory.

Linen Quarter BID’s Communications and Event Manager, Stevie Maginn, said: “Linen Quarter BID is excited for the potential of Pétanque in supporting the further animation of Blackstaff Square, alongside additional installations we’ve completed, such as the Flaxx boardwalk and social space on Brunswick Street.

“As the gateway to the Linen Quarter, we want to foster a welcoming atmosphere for the many surrounding organisations such as Maldron Hotel, who currently reside in Blackstaff Square, and for the estimated 12 million people who will travel through the new Grand Central Station each year, when it opens nearby in 2025.”

One organisation competing in the Inter-Company Pétanque Tournament is Relate NI. Cara McVeigh, Relate NI’s Fundraising Officer & Pétanque Team Captain said: “Playing Pétanque together has been a great way for us to put our values into practice, and help to support workplace relationships among colleagues. We’re excited to network with other organisations in the area and grow awareness of our work in a fun and active way.”

Linen Quarter BID has a range of events as part of its six-week summer events program, find out more here.