Harland and Wolff shipyard workers emerge with union reps after a meeting at the shipyard, vowing to continue their picket at the gates until their jobs are secure, in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Aug. 5, 2019.
Harland and Wolff shipyard workers emerge with union reps after a meeting at the shipyard, vowing to continue their picket at the gates until their jobs are secure, in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Aug. 5, 2019.

The iconic Northern Ireland shipyard, known for building the Titanic, is about to go into bankruptcy. 

British authorities have named an administrator to oversee the restructuring at Harland and Wolff, the 158-year-old shipyard in Belfast. 

In its pre-World War II heyday, the shipyard employed more than 35,000 people. Today its remaining 130 workers are occupying the site, calling on the government to intervene.

Union officials blame Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his Conservative government for not having a coherent plan to safeguard manufacturing jobs.

"The future of Harland and Wolff is more than a 'commercial issue' that the prime minister can stand by and do nothing about,'' said Michael Mulholland, an organizer for the GMB union. "But we will not give up on this famous shipyard. The occupation will continue and our battle will continue.''

Harland and Wolff is best known for building the Titanic, the luxury liner that sank after hitting an iceberg during its maiden voyage in 1912 from Southampton, England, to New York, killing 1,517 of the 2,223 passengers and crew on board.

The shipyard has not built a ship since 2003. It has since diversified to cruise liner retrofits and wind energy projects.