Monday, 6 May 2013


Ballintoy's Hidden History

Ballintoy Archaeological and Historical society has received funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, (HLF) - “All Our Stories” programme, to undertake an exciting project called “Ballintoy’s Hidden History”.   The purpose of this blog is to inform you about the project, follow how it is progressing and share what we learn.  We are embarking on a wonderful journey of discovery and we hope you will enjoy it with us.  We would be delighted if you decided to take part in the project as it unfolds throughout 2013… and beyond!

Dr Max Hope, University of Ulster, launching Ballintoy’s Hidden History project at
Templastragh Church.


To begin, we want to tell you about our society.  Ballintoy Archaeological and Historical Society was established in 2010.  We have approximately 60 members.  Its aim is to promote awareness of the historical and archaeological heritage of Ballintoy and the surrounding district in north Antrim.  We meet on the last Thursday of each month, (except July and August, in Ballintoy Parish Hall.  Our meetings, which are open to non-members, consist of talks on a variety of local historical topics.  We also visit historical sites and archives.  The copy of the Society’s current programme of monthly meetings which is shown below, demonstrates the wide diverse range of subjects we have covered since September 2012.  Our programme for the 2012/13 season will be available soon.



Ballintoy’s hidden history project has been set up to enable us to explore and tell the story of some of the less well known historical sites in the Ballintoy area.   We have decided to focus on three sites namely; Templastragh Church, Ballintoy Castle and an 18th Century school “for the education of young gentlemen” at White Park Bay.
These important sites are all “hidden” aspects of our local community’s heritage.  Very little is known about them and we wish to rescue them from obscurity!  With the assistance of professional archaeologists from the University of Ulster at Coleraine and Queens University Belfast we will conduct an archaeological survey of the sites and undertake research in archives to reconstruct and tell their story.  We will also hold a community history workshop to encourage people to come and learn about our project and share with us their knowledge, memories and stories of Ballintoy’s colourful past.
In September 2013 we will launch a small exhibition and a website to share our findings both locally and further afield.  In the meantime we will provide regular updates on how we are progressing. 
If you wish to find out more about Ballintoy Archaeological and Historical Society or our Hidden History Project, please e-mail


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