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Know your townlands

Know your townlands

The Know your townlands project is implemented through The Ring of Gullion Landscape Partnership Scheme. The LPS is part of the Heritage Lottery Fund’s programme to conserve and enhance some of the region’s most treasured landscapes. The LPS runs from September 2015 until August 2018.

The total budget for this project is £46,000

The project aims to raise awareness about the townlands in South Armagh, their history, their meaning and why they are important. The project aims to regain the oral tradition around the local townlands that has been lost in many communities. Each townland will be marked with boundary markers on roads that intersect them. There will be a townland brochure, an online space for the stories of the townlands to be documented and an educational resource for use in the local community and in schools.

To view the full project plan please download the Ring of Gullion Landscape Conservation Action Plan below.

Project Updates

Townland Public Event

Update published on: March 15, 2018

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A very informative and enjoyable evening was organised in the historic Drawing Room of Derrymore to tell tales of Derrymore and its surrounding townlands. Over 60 people gathered to hear a great line up of speakers giving short insights into their local experiences in our townlands. Tales of Derrymore’e wildlife, built heritage and future plans were the focus of both the Friends of Derrymore group and the new NT warden Rosemary Mulholland. Local historian, Una Walsh, used easy-to-access websites to demonstrate how to trace family ancestors using townland information and spoke passionately about the importance of our townlands in discovering local history. Finally Richard Black from the Bessbrook Development Association showed a fascinating docudrama about the Bessbrook Tramline which was made during a local history project in the area.

Entertainment was provided by local young musicians and attendees the chance to soak up the atmosphere of the historic Drawing Room in Derrymore House as it would have been in its heyday, full of discussions, conversations and social discourse. Townland chat was further stimulated by a short questionnaire about attitudes to townlands that everyone was invited to complete. A good number of these were returned and we were pleased to see that 91% of respondents felt that townland names were important to them personally and 100% though the use of townland names was important to their community.

Primary Schools Education project

Update published on: June 30, 2016

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With the assistance of two local teachers and historians Kevin Murphy and Una Walsh, the Landscape Partnership team wrote and produced a teaching resource book,  a teaching programme aimed at Key stage 2 pupils was also developed. This was rolled out with great success to every primary school in South Armagh over the summer term 2016 and in the secondary schools (GCSE history classes) in the autumn term 2016.

While visiting the schools a number of them were loaned recording equipment and children were encouraged to record stories and local snippets about their townlands in their local accents. Over 70 recordings in 60 townlands have been made to date.

The teaching booklet will be available for teachers to download and use in future years.

Townlands in Mullaghane Primary School

Update published on: April 14, 2016

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P7 from Mullaghbane Primary School were delighted to welcome Una Walsh and Kevin Murphy into their class today to explain all about the Townland’s Project. Everyone in P7 now knows in which Townland they live and how to use websites like the Census site to find out more about who was living in that Townland in 1901. It was interesting to see Family Names and the signatures of the head of households from over a 100 years ago.

History is exciting, it is right on our doorsteps and it is about our own families!!! Thank you Una, Kevin and the Ring of Gullion Landscape Partnership.

Lots of pictures – click here.

Townland Map Poster for schools

Update published on: October 20, 2015

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An A1 townlands map has been produced and these will be given out to the local schools over the next few months. Schools will have the opportunity to get involved with the townlands through audio recordings, stone installation, stone adoption and events.

Townland stones arrive

Update published on: September 24, 2015

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Over 310 cut stones have now been delivered to our stone mason. We will now be working with volunteers to get all the townland names catalogued over the next few weeks,  ready for the carving.

We need local communities that would like to have stones placed on the  borders of their townlands to contact us, so we can make sure they are put in the right place and organise volunteers to help place the stones and look after them.

Each stone will need to be placed with the approval of the Roads Service to ensure that they do not pose a risk to traffic and we have been informed that erection on walls or bridges would be the easiest in terms of maintenance and verge cutting teams, so if you or any community group, (school, GAA , church etc) would like to get involved please get in touch and we will provide you with the stones.

Click here to see more photos of the project

Townlands Public Event in Derrymore

Update published on: March 15, 2018

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A very informative and enjoyable evening was organised in the historic Drawing Room of Derrymore to tell tales of Derrymore and its surrounding townlands. Over 60 people gathered to hear a great line up of speakers giving short insights into their local experiences in our townlands. Tales of Derrymore’s wildlife, built heritage and future plans were the focus of both the Friends of Derrymore group and the new NT warden Rosemary Mulholland.  Local historian, Una Walsh, used easy-to-access websites to demonstrate how to trace family ancestors using townland information and spoke passionately about the importance of our townlands in discovering local history. Finally Richard Black from the Bessbrook Development Association showed a fascinating docudrama about the Bessbrook Tramline which was made during a local history project in the area.

Entertainment was provided by local young musicians and attendees the chance to soak up the atmosphere of the historic Drawing Room in Derrymore House as it would have been in its heyday, full of discussions, conversations and social discourse. Townland chat was further stimulated by a short questionnaire about attitudes to townlands that everyone was invited to complete. A good number of these were returned and we were pleased to see that 91% of respondents felt that townland names were important to them personally and 100% thought the use of townland names was important to their community.

We would like to thank the National Trust and the guardians at Derrymore for accommodating us and being so helpful in organising this event.

Update published on:

Lottery Funded
NIEA DoE N&M DC Biodiversity

Quick Contact

Ring of Gullion AONB
Crossmaglen Community Centre,
O’Fiaich Square,
Crossmaglen,
BT35 9AA.

Tel: +44 (0)28 3086 1949
Slieve Gullion Forest Park: +44 (0)28 3031 3170
Email: info@ringofgullion.org

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