All Lewis entries for Ballyculter


More information on Samuel Lewis' Topographical Dictionary of Ireland (1837)
Accompanying Lewis map for Down


BALLYCULTER, a parish, in the barony of LECALE, county of DOWN, and province of ULSTER; containing, with the post-town of Strangford, 2221 inhabitants. It is situated on Lough Strangford, and comprises, according to the Ordnance survey, (including islands and detached portions) 5177- statute acres, of which 1753 are applotted under the tithe act; about four-fifths are arable and pasture, and the remainder, excepting about 70 acres of woodland and 40 of water, is wasteland and bog. The soil is very fertile, and the land is in a state of excellent cultivation; a considerable quantity of corn is sent to Liverpool and Glasgow. At Tallyratty are some lead mines, which were worked in 1827, and found very productive; the ore is considered to be of superior quality, but they are not now worked. Castle Ward, the splendid seat of Lord Bangor; Strangford House, the residence of the lion. Harriet Ward; and Strangford Lodge, that of J. Blackwood, Esq., are situated in the parish. The village is neatly built, and is one of the most pleasant in the county. A manor court is held at Strangford every three weeks by the seneschal of the lord of the manor, in whom are vested very extensive privileges; its jurisdiction extends over the parish and the river of Strangford. The living is a rectory, in the diocese of Down, and was formerly annexed to the deanery of Down, from which it was separated in 1834, and made a distinct rectory, in the patronage of the Crown; the tithes amount to £387. 15. 7. The church, a spacious and handsome structure, was erected in 1723, and a tower and spire were added to it in 1770: the Ecclesiastical Commissioners have lately granted £295 for its repair. There is a chapel at Strangford, the private property of Lord De Roos, of which the rector is chaplain. The glebe-house was built by aid of a gift of £450 and a loan of £50 from the late Board of First Fruits, in 1817 : there is a glebe at Strangford, comprising 6a. 2r. 37p. Lord Bangor is about to build a glebe-house in or near the village for the residence of the rector. In the R. C. divisions the parish forms part of the union or district of Ballee; there arc two chapels, one at Strangford and the other at Cargagh; and there are two places of worship for Wesleyan Methodists. In the village is a handsome school-house, with residences for a master and mistress, built in 1824, .and supported by an annual donation of £50 from Lord Bangor, and a small donation from the rector. An infants' school is supported entirely by the Hon. Harriet Ward. These schools afford instruction to about 94 boys and 84 girls; and there are also two pay schools, in which are about 82 boys and 48 girls, and four Sunday schools. Near the church are four handsome alms-houses, built in 1832 at the expense of Lady Sophia Ward, who endowed them with £40 per annum, payable out of the estate of Lord Bangor for ever; the management is vested in three trustees, of whom the rector for the time being is one. Within the parish are three castles erected by De Courcy and his followers after the conquest of Ulster; one is situated close to the quay at Strangford, one on the creek below Castle Ward, and the third is Audley Castle on a rock opposite to Portaferry.


STRANGFORD, a small sea-port and post-town, in the parish of BALLYCULTER, county of DOWN, and province of ULSTER, 6 miles (N. E.) from Dowinpatrick, and 79? (N. N. E.) from Dublin ; containing 583 inhabitants. In the year 1400, the constable of Dublin city, with divers others, fought a great sea battle at Strangford against the Scotch, in which many of the English were slain. It is situated on the western side of the channel which forms the entrance of the lough to which the town gives name; it is a very small place, having only 119 houses, among which are a chapel of ease to the parish church of Ballyculter, a R. C. chapel, and a Wesleyan Methodist meeting-house : here is also a small quay for the convenience of the fishing boats, and of the passengers crossing the strait to Portaferry. It is a constabulary police station : fairs are held on Aug. 12th and Nov. 8th. The trade is chiefly in coal and timber. A school, in which are about 200 children, is supported by the Hon. W. Fitzgerald De Roos and the Rev. Charles Wolseley. Near this place are the remains of two castles called Welsh's and Audeley's ; the former has been converted into the handsome dwelling-house of R. F. Anderson, Esq. ; the latter, still in ruins, is on a hill which commands a view of the lough as far as Newtown, and is supposed to have been erected by one of the Audeleys, who settled in this county under John De Courcy. The lough of Strangford was formerly called Lough Coyne : it extends from Killard Point to Newtown, a distance of about 17 miles, from north to south ; in some parts it is five and in others three miles in breadth, and at its entrance not quite one. It contains a vast number of islands and rocks. Six of the islands are inhabited ; namely, Castle island, in the parish of Saul, containing 118 acres of' land under cultivation, and on which are the ruins of a castle ; Rea island, in the parish of Tullynakill, containing 103 acres, occupied by a farmer ; Wood island, also in the parish of Tullynakill, containing 16 acres, and on which are large beds of shells, from 50 to 60 feet above the level of the sea, that are converted into excellent lime by burning ; Tagart island, in the parish of Killyleagh ; Islandbawn, in the parish of Killinchy, containing 30 acres of land ; and Maghea island,, in the parish of Tullynakill, containing 137 acres of land : it has a small quay, to which brigs can come up, and on it are the ruins of a castle, formerly the summer residence of the Knox family. Strangford Lough is a safe and deep harbour, admitting vessels of the largest draught, but, owing to the great rapidity of the tides and the rocks near its entrance, on which the sea breaks violently, it is not prudent for a strange vessel to attempt to enter. There are two passages to it, divided by a reef nearly in the centre of the channel, and half a mile long, called Rock Angus, corrupted into "the Rock and Goose," on which is a stone beacon, and at the south extremity a perch called the Garter, which is dry at half ebb ; south-westward from this perch, at a cable's length, are the Pots rocks. The passage on the south side of Rock Angus has 2? fathoms of water, and is navigable only for small vessels. The tide runs in and out of the lough with such velocity as on some occasions to carry vessels against the wind. Strangford gives the title of Viscount to the family of Smythe.

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