Statue Of Edward Carson In Front Of The Parliament Buildings, Belfast, Northern Ireland. The Parliament Buildings, known as Stormont because of its location in the Stormont area of Belfast is the seat of the Northern Ireland Assembly and the Northern Ireland Executive. It previously housed the old Parliament of Northern Ireland. The building was used for the Parliament of Northern Ireland until it was prorogued in 1972. The Senate chamber was used by the Royal Air Force as an operations room during World War II. The building was used for the short-lived Sunningdale power-sharing executive in 1974. Between 1973 and 1998 it served as the headquarters of the Northern Ireland civil service. Between 1982 and 1986 it served as the seat of the rolling-devolution assembly. It is now the home of the Northern Ireland Assembly. In the 1990s, Sinn Féin suggested that a new parliament building for Northern Ireland should be erected, saying that the building at Stormont was too controversial and too associated with unionist rule to be used by a power-sharing assembly. However, no-one else supported the demand and the new assembly and executive was installed there as its permanent home. On 3 December 2005, the Great Hall was used for the funeral service of former Northern Ireland and Manchester United footballer George Best. The building was selected for the funeral as it is in the only grounds in Belfast suitable to accommodate the large number of members of the public who wished to attend the funeral. Approximately 25,000 people gathered in the grounds, with thousands more lining the cortege route. It was the first time since World War II that the building has been used for a non-governmental or non-political purpose. In springtime in 2006 however the building was reopened for political talks between the MLA's from the various political parties in Northern Ireland.