Carrickfergus (barony)

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Coordinates: 54°44′13″N5°50′56″W / 54.737°N 5.849°W / 54.737; -5.849



Carraig Fhearghais [1] (Irish)
Carrickfergus barony.png
Location of the barony of Carrickfergus, County Antrim, Northern Ireland.
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Country Northern Ireland
County Antrim

Carrickfergus is a barony in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. [2] [3] It is bounded on the south-east by Belfast Lough, and otherwise surrounded by the barony of Belfast Lower. [2] [3] It is coextensive with the civil parish of Carrickfergus or St Nicholas [4] [5] [6] [7] and corresponds to the former county of the town of Carrickfergus, a county corporate encompassing Carrickfergus town. [8]


Carrickfergus Castle was the stronghold of the Earl of Ulster in the Anglo-Norman period, and Carrickfergus or Knockfergus was one of the medieval counties into which the Earldom was divided. After the Tudor reconquest of Ireland, the east coast of Ulster was rationalised into counties Antrim and Down, but Carrickfergus retained its ancient status as a separate corporate county. Whereas most such counties comprised an urban municipal borough and surrounding rural liberties, the royal charter of James I made the borough of Carrickfergus coterminous with the county of the town. The Municipal Corporations (Ireland) Act 1840 formally abolished the borough, and replaced its corporation with town commissioners. [8] The grand jury of the county of the town of Carrickfergus was unchanged by the 1840 act. [7] Till 1850, Carrickfergus was also county town of Antrim; the Town Gaol and Town Courthouse were for the county of the town, while the County Gaol and County Courthouse were separate buildings within the town regarded as exclaves of county Antrim, but from 1800 both counties used the same facilities. [9] [10] The parliamentary borough of Carrickfergus was coterminous with the county of the town from the Act 2 & 3 William IV c.89 [11] [12] [13] till it was abolished under the Redistribution of Seats Act 1885.

In 1899, under the terms of the Local Government (Ireland) Act 1898, the Local Government Board for Ireland combined the judicial county of the town of Carrickfergus and most of the judicial county of Antrim into the administrative county of Antrim. Thereafter the area was sometimes but not always considered as a barony. In the topographical index of the 1926 census, Carrickfergus is not in the list of baronies, [14] and the "barony" value listed for the corresponding townlands is blank. [15] However, notices in The Belfast Gazette from the same era refer to the "barony of Carrickfergus", [16] and it is listed on the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland website. [2]

The area subject to the town commissioners of Carrickfergus became an urban district; the rest of the county of the town became the Carrickfergus Rural district electoral division (DED) of Larne rural district. Eden DED was split out of Carrickfergus Rural DED from 1908. [17] [18] Since the Local Government Act (Northern Ireland) 1972 the whole barony forms part of the jurisdiction of Carrickfergus Borough Council.


Below is a list of settlements in Carrickfergus: [1] [19]



Population centres

Civil parishes

Carrickfergus or St Nicholas is the only civil parish in the barony and has 5 townlands. [20]


The county of the town of Carrickfergus in 1891 comprised five townlands: Carrickfergus (comprising the historic town, and most of the later urban district); Commons, Middle Division, and North East Division (in DED of Eden), and West Division (DED of Carrickfergus Rural; at 6732 acres, the largest townland in Northern Ireland). [17] [21] There was uncertainty as to whether the townlands of Ballymena Little and Straidland formed part of Carrickfergus; an 1810 courtcase decided they belonged to the Corporation but were not part of the county of the town. [13] [22] [23] The parish boundaries were also uncertain; [22] the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland website lists four townlands in the parish of "Carrickfergus or St. Nicholas'", namely Carrickfergus, Commons, Green Island, and West Division. [24]


On the Belfast–Larne railway line, stations in Carrickfergus barony are Greenisland, Trooperslane, Clipperstown, Carrickfergus, and Downshire.

Related Research Articles

County Antrim Place in Antrim Northern Ireland

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Carrickfergus Human settlement in Northern Ireland

Carrickfergus is a large town in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It sits on the north shore of Belfast Lough, 11 miles (18 km) from Belfast. The town had a population of 27,998 at the 2011 Census. It is County Antrim's oldest town and one of the oldest towns in Ireland as a whole. Carrickfergus was the administrative centre for Carrickfergus Borough Council, before this was amalgamated into the Mid and East Antrim District Council in 2015, and forms part of the Belfast Metropolitan Area. It is also a townland of 65 acres, a civil parish and a barony.

Greenisland Human settlement in Northern Ireland

Greenisland is a town in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It lies 7 miles north-east of Belfast and 3 miles south-west of Carrickfergus. The town is on the coast of Belfast Lough and is named after a tiny islet to the west, the Green Island.

Samuel Lewis was the editor and publisher of topographical dictionaries and maps of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. The aim of the texts was to give in 'a condensed form', a faithful and impartial description of each place. The firm of Samuel Lewis and Co. was based in London. Samuel Lewis the elder died in 1865. His son of the same name predeceased him in 1862.

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Monkstown, County Antrim electoral ward and townland

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Belfast Lower Place in Northern Ireland, United Kingdom

Belfast Lower is a barony in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. To its east lies the east-Antrim coast and Belfast Lough, and it is bordered by four other baronies: Belfast Upper to the south, Carrickfergus to the east, Antrim Upper to the west; Glenarm Upper to the north. The Forth and Milewater rivers both flow through Belfast Lower, with Larne harbour also situated in the barony.

Kilculliheen Barony in Leinster, Ireland

Kilculliheen is a civil parish, electoral division and barony in Ireland, on the north bank of the River Suir across from the centre of Waterford City. Historically, it has been transferred several times between the county of the city of Waterford and the counties of Kilkenny and Waterford. It now contains the only part of Waterford city on the left bank of the River Suir. The Parliamentary Gazetteer of 1846 states "as it lies on the left bank of the Suir, which, for the most part, divides co. Waterford from co. Kilkenny, most topographists mistakingly assign it to the barony of Ida, co. Kilkenny". It is now partly in County Kilkenny and partly in Waterford City. Of the barony's eleven townlands, five are entirely in Kilkenny and six are split between Kilkenny and Waterford. The city portion contains the former village of Ferrybank, which gives its name to a wider suburb which has spread across the county boundary.

Billy, County Antrim

Billy is a civil parish in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It spans the historic baronies of Cary and Dunluce Lower, and is approximately 26 square miles (67 km2) in area. According to the Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, published by Samuel Lewis in 1837, it then had approximately 5800 inhabitants.

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Magheracross is a townland and civil parish in County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. It extends in area from just north of Enniskillen to the Border with County Tyrone. There is also a small enclave in County Tyrone.

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Castlereagh is a townland and former hamlet in the civil parish of Knockbreda, barony of Castlereagh Lower, in County Down, Northern Ireland. It is southeast of Belfast and now at the fringe of the city's suburbs. The townland has an area of 415 acres (168 ha).

Ankers Bower

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  1. 1 2 "Carrickfergus". Placenames Database of Ireland. Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  2. 1 2 3 PRONI Baronies of Northern Ireland
  3. 1 2 "Baronies and parishes of County Antrim". Archived from the original on 27 July 2011. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  4. Commissioners 1835, §5
  5. Lewis, Samuel (1837). "Carrickfergus Parish in the 1830s". A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland. Retrieved 8 February 2012.
  6. "PRONI Civil Parishes of County Antrim". Archived from the original on 27 July 2011. Retrieved 26 June 2010.
  7. 1 2 "Carrickfergus". The Parliamentary gazetteer of Ireland: adapted to the new poor-law, franchise, municipal and ecclesiastical arrangements, and compiled with a special reference to the lines of railroad and canal communication, as existing in 1814–45. III. A. Fullarton and co. 1846. pp. 324–5.
  8. 1 2 "Carrickfergus". Municipal Boundaries Commission (Ireland): part III: report; minutes of evidence (PDF). Command papers. Cmd.3089. 1881. pp. 254–5.
  9. Commissioners 1835, §97
  10. Lewis, Samuel (1837). "Carrickfergus Corporation in the 1830s". A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland. Retrieved 8 February 2012.
  11. "An Act to settle and describe the Limits of Cities Towns and Boroughs in Ireland in so far as respects the Election of Members to serve in Parliament". The law journal for the year 1832–1949. Abridgment of statutes. X. E. B. Ince. 1832.
  12. Lewis, Samuel (1837). "Appendix". A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland. II.
  13. 1 2 "Carrickfergus". Municipal Corporations Boundaries (Ireland). Reports from Commissioners. XXIX. 10 May 1837. pp. 30–32.
  14. "List of Baronies": Topographical Index, p.vii
  15. e.g. "Carrickfergus": Topographical Index, p.51
  16. e.g. No.360 p.460 (18 May 1928); No.483 p.1118 and p.1125 (26 Sep 1930); No.543 p.1201 (20 Nov 1931)
  17. 1 2 Local Government Board for Ireland (1907). "No. 2,181 and No. 11,864.". 35th annual report. Command papers. Cmd.3682.
  18. "North-east sheet". Boundaries of Administrative Counties, Co. Boroughs, Urban & Dispensary Districts & District Electoral Divisions. Ordnance Survey Ireland. 1961 [1935]. Archived from the original on 5 February 2011. Retrieved 8 February 2012.
  19. Lewis, Samuel (1837). "Carrickfergus County in the 1830s". A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland. Retrieved 8 February 2012.
  20. "Carrickfergus". IreAtlas Townlands Database. Retrieved 20 April 2015.
  21. "Antrim". Census of Ireland 1891: Area, Population and Number of Houses; Occupations, Religion and Education volume III, Province of Ulster. Command Papers. C.6626-IX. Thom's. 1892. pp. 54, Table VII.
  22. 1 2 Commissioners 1835, §§4,5
  23. Lewis, Samuel (1837). "Carrickfergus Government in the 1830s". A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland. Retrieved 8 February 2012.
  24. "Parish of Carrickfergus or St. Nicholas'". Parishes in Northern Ireland. Public Record Office of Northern Ireland. Archived from the original on 29 August 2011. Retrieved 8 February 2012.