Places to See | Co. Down, Northern Ireland.
Holywood’s rich ecclesiastical heritage is represented today by its most distinctive building, the Old Priory.
A monastery was founded by St Laiseran before 640 on the site of the present ruins of the medieval Old Priory at the junction of High Street, Victoria Road and the Old Bangor Road in Holywood, County Down, Northern Ireland.
The Priory was dissolved on New Years Day, 1541, by Henry VIII with its lands passing into the hands of the O’Neill family and then to Sir James Hamilton, First Viscount Clandeboye. Hamilton laid out the town, with a maypole at the crossroads and most of the early buildings are clustered round the Priory.
The tower dates from the 1800’s when this was the site of the town’s Parish Church. The graveyard has some interesting “residents” including members of the Praeger family, the Dunvilles of whiskey fame and Sir Joseph Larmor the world famous mathematician.
Address: Holywood, BT18 9AB