Ros Davies' Co. Down, Northern Ireland Family History Research Site
© Rosalind Davies 2001

Permission granted to reprint research for non-profit use only

Inishargy Parish

Kircubbin town Kircubbin Church of Ireland Kircubbin Presbyterian Balligan Church of Ireland
Glastry Presbyterian Glastry Methodist . Nunsquarter Catholic


Kircubbin main street

Kircubbin town
5km SE of Grey Abbey; on Strangford Lough

The name of the town means ' church of St. Goban'. In 1659 there were 8 English/Scots & 1 Catholic families here. The town owes its origins to Mr. Bayle/Baily who gave leases of 4-5 acres for a small sum in order to encourage building. It was very small with a port established in 1790, with an export trade in kelp. In 1830 there were 537 inhabitants & 117 neatly built houses. The women manufactured straw hats and great quantities of kelp are burnt and sent annually to Liverpool. Corn and potatoes were shipped to Liverpol and Glasgow. Hon. Robert Ward built a linen hall and a quay. Petty Sessions were held here every alternate Monday.
In 1834 there was one main street & one small street, 88 two-storey houses & 33 one-storey & 5 three-storey houses, all slate roofed. One of the oldest houses has a date of 1769.In 1836 the town contained a Presbyterian meeting house, a court house and a school, also a corn mill, a linen market & a manor court held every 9 weeks .A church service was held in the infants school in 1834. There was a Police Barracks here in 1863. The population of the town in 1910 was 579 people. (POD)

Newspaper articles from Northern Star;
theft at Kircubbin Fair 28 May 1795; letter against Catholics 7 Feb 1796;

Newspaper articles from Down Recorder;
new monthly fair 8 Sep 1838: effects of The Big Storm 12 Jan 1839; teacherís soiree 4 Sep 1841: body found 14 Jan 1843; Famine soup kitchens 1847; Petty Sessions. Possession of shipwreck goods 2 Dec 1854; Patriotic fund. Names of contributors 20 Jan 1855;Glastry Select School 2 Feb 1856; banking accommodation 5 Nov 1870

Newspaper articles from Newtownards Chronicle;
opposition to proposed depot 5 Jun 1875; concert & readings at schoolhouse 12 Feb 1876; regatta 14 Sep 1878; regatta 11 Aug 1883; foundation stone for Orange Hall 19 Nov 1887; opening of Orange Hall 19 May 1888; sale of Martins Hotel 6 Jun 1891; questions in Parliament about Post Office 19 Mar 1892; slander case 1 Aug 1896; Steam Scutching & Grinding Co. in liquidation 29 Jul 1899; fireball in district 25 Nov 1899

References;NS: POD; V7 p 18, 84 ,85 & V17 p 125 OSM: DR & DR* 7 Nov 2001; PNNI V 2 p 91;GV


St. Andrews, Balligan

St. Andrews- Balligan Church of Ireland
in Inishargy Rd

The first record of the parish is in 1180 with the first church built around 13th century but in ruins by 17th century. They recently found a 13th century sandstone coffin lid . A new church was built in 1704 to serve Ballyhalbert, Ballywalter & Inishargy since those churches were in bad repair. Old Inishargy church had been in ruins for years. A porch & vestry were added to the new church in 1749. The organ came from Scotland around 1775 and placed in Kircubbin Church then transfered to Balligan in 1899. When the new churches were built in Ballyhalbert (1843) & Ballywalter (1850) this church went into decline. It was described in 1836 as capable of holding 200 people and its dimensions were 52 by 22 feet. There was a school house next door in 1863. The church was restored in 1966 & 2004.

records from 1783; North of Ireland FHS ( ) holds baptisms 1783-1800 & 1805-1850; marriages 1783- 1859 & burials 1783- 1883; graveyard attached; email me for a gravestone look-up
The above photo was kindly sent to me Brian McCleary.

References;V7 p 85 OSM; GIC; V14 MIs; O'L V1 p 430;GV; church pamphlet


Kircubbin Church of Ireland

Kircubbin Church of Ireland- Holy Trinity
in Main Street

This Meeting House was built in 1843. The minister from 1905 - 1918 was Canon George Foster.

Newspaper article from Down Recorder;
reopening 9 Jun 1877

Newspaper article from Newtownards Chronicle;
dedication service 9 Sep 1899

Records available; baptisms from 1847, marriages from 1867 & burials from 1896 ; graveyard behind the church ; North of Ireland FHS ( ) hold baptisms 1847- 1900 & marriages 1867-1932 & burials 1896-1921

References;NC; GIC: GIPR; V12 MIs; POD


Kircubbin Presbyterian Church

Kircubbin Presbyterian
on the western side of the Square near the shore

The congregation was originally part of Ballyhalbert or Glastry. This Meeting House was erected in 1777 in the plainest architecture with dimensions of 70 by 48 feet and was paid for by contributions. The Ward family paid £10 a year to the minister. The first minister was Rev. George Brydone until 1817 . He was succeeded by Rev. Alexander McEwen 1817- 1837. In 1834, the church was described as having contained 167 seats with an average attendance of 176 people. Rev. James Rowan was minister 1838-1839 - 1869. The church was rebuilt in 1861. The minister from 1869 to at least 1910 was Rev. Samuel Hawthorne. The Herron Memorial Hall nearby was built in 1897. The entrance was reconstructed in 1953.

Newspaper article from Down Recorder;
new church 20 Jul 1861

Newspaper article from Newtownards Chronicle;
opening of new lecture hall, interesting historical facts 14 Aug 1897

Records available are baptisms 1778- 1826, marriages 1781-1845; North of Ireland FHS ( has baptisms 1778-1921 & marriages 1781 -1920; have baptisms 1778-1826 on batch #C700361; graveyard attached, gravestones UHF Vol 12 ; oldest stone 1800; email me for a gravestone look-up

References; HCPCI p173-174; V7 p 85 OSM: DR; NC GIPR: GIC; V12 MIs;GV ; POD


Glastry Presbyterian

Glastry Presbyterian
formerly Ballyhalbert Presbyterian

The congregation of this meeting house became independent from Ballywalter & Ballywalter in 1720. A plaque on the wall of the old church says the church was built in 1721. The first minister, Rev. John McMurray, appointed 28 Dec 1725. He was succeeded by Rev. Thomas Scott on 14 Jun 1732 until 1770. The church was rebuilt in 1777 when the minister was Rev. William Steel Dickson (1771-1780) . The next minister was Rev. James Sinclair 1781-1832. He became infirm & was replaced by Rev. Alexander P. Goudy 1832-1833.

The minister 1834- 1838 was Rev. John McRoberts. It was described in 1836 as a T shaped building, with dimensions of 22 by 16 metres. It contained 68 seats with an average attendance of 200 . The minister received £55 a year from the congregation. The minister in 1839-1872 was Rev. Gilbert Jamison & he was replaced by Rev. Robert Workman on 3 Sep 1872 until at least 1910. Rev. William Morrow installed 17 Jun 1911.

Articles for Northern Star newspaper;
meeting of all denominations here to discuss civil unrest 16 Dec 1796

Records of baptisms & marriages from 1728, North of Ireland FHS ( has baptism 1728-1921 & marriages 1750-1921; graveyard attached, gravestones UHF Vol 15; oldest stone 1838; email me for a gravestone lookup

References; HCPCI p148-149; V7 p 85 OSM; GIPR; GIC; V15 MIs; NS;GV ; MC; MIs; POD;JUAHS 2011 p36; Lena McVea


Glastry Methodist

Glastry Methodist Church

This church was built before 1863. The minister in 1910 was Rev.Trotter .

records from 1879; North of Ireland FHS ( has baptism 1879- 1945 & marriages 1864-1937; no graveyard

References;GIC; GV ; POD


nunsquarter Catholic Church

Nunsquarter Catholic church
Our Lady Star of the Sea

At one stage Mass was heard in a store in Kircubbin before a site was given by James Allen Esq. The chapel was consecrated 6 Jan 1865 when Rev James Crickard was parish priest and a school was built beside it in in 1870.

Priests- Rev. Laurence McKenna until 1902; Rev. Andrew Tully 1902- 1906; Rev. John Nolan 1906-1913; Rev. Arthur Neeson 1913- 1943; Rev. William Walshe 1944- 1965; Rev. Arthur Haughey 1955- 1967; Rev. Joseph Conway 1987- 2000; Rev. Patrick O'Neill 2000+ (shared with Ballycran)

no graveyard

References;GIC; O'L V1 p 428; PE ; LM 1994 p74


by Ros Davies