Roman Catholic Churches
St Tidas Parish Church, Church Lane, Bellaghy.
Built in 1622, the present St Tidas Parish Church replaced
the original Church on Church Island in Lough Beg, on the River Bann.(See St.Taide Parish Church)
St Tidas Church is thought to have been burnt down in 1641
The Church was rebuilt by
the Earl Bishop of Bristol in 1794 when the Spire was added.
(Above) St Tidas Parish Church, Bellaghy.
(Below) Since the Church was built,
the Graveyard has provided the burial grounds for Protestants of all denominations, and in the early days, those of
a few Roman Catholic families as well.
Christ Church - Church of Ireland Bridge Street, Castledawson.
Built in the pre-parish days, the church was originally a private Chapel
for the Dawson family.
Built in 1694, it only became known as Christ Church until almost 200 years
later. In 1829 the church was extensively repaired and a stained glass window was added in 1851..
In the 1870s the growing community of Castledawson necessitated a Parish
Church, so in 1875, the Dawson family handed it over its own private Church to the new parish.
(Above) Christ Church, Castledawson.
(Below) Christ Church graveyard and Church. For almost 200
years this was the private graveyard for the Dawson family.
St Conlies Church of Ireland, Hillhead Road, Knockloughrim.
(Details to follow)
St Taide Parish Church,
Bellaghy (Church Island)
Church Island has been the focal point for worship of for various religions
down through the centuries. This was a monastic settlement as far back as 1112.
At the time of the Reformation the island and Church passed into the hands
of the Established Church, but the Catholic people have always regarded Church Island as the burial place of their forefathers.
By 1622, St.Taide Church on the Island was in perilous state, so it was
replaced by St Tidas Parish Church, a new Church of Ireland Church which was built in Bellaghy. (See St Tidas Parish Church)
The tower and Spire were not built until 166 years later, when in 1788
they were added by the Earl Bishop of Bristol, to improve the view from his mansion at Ballyscullion.
The property is currently maintained as an ancient monument by the Dept.
of the Environment. They have recently rebuilt the top of the spire which had been crooked since being struck by an American
war-plane out of Toome aerodrome during World War II.
(Above) Church Island as viewed from the Ballydermot
Road, near Bellaghy.
(Below) An aerial photograph of the
old St.Taide Church on the Island.
NOTE;- I did not take this photograph, this is only
temporary until I get an opportunity to get unto the Island and take my own photographs.