Category Archives: Beautiful Ulster

Ballygowan – The Time is Short!

Ballygowan Presbyterian Church Hall.

Bally 2

Originally known as ‘The Olivet Home’ it was built to be an orphanage in 1886 by Alexander Orr Reid as a memorial to his only son who was killed in a shooting accident. It was purchased by Ballygowan Presbyterian Church in 1918 and used as a school and church hall. The inscription on the building is ‘The Time is Short’ – thought to be a reference to the death of one of the construction workers, who fell to his death from the roof. A white stone on the top of the tower marks the event.

The Fun Guy!

Why did the Mushroom go to the party?  Because he’s a FUNGHI!  This little toadstool is called Gus, (Because he’s really such a fun Gus!).  Gus, or Gussy as he is known to his friends, has bravely beaten the odds and grown up to daylight between two heavy railway sleepers that form steps in our garden.  Image made with the Fujifilm X-T2, with 200 mm lens.

ToadstoolUp

Sadly his party-going days are numbered, for he’ll be uprooted in case one of our grandchildren thinks he might be edible! Continue reading The Fun Guy!

MV Oriana

On Monday 18th June 2018, the cruise ship ‘Oriana’ – a P&O Cruises ship, visited Belfast as part of a ‘British Isles’ cruise.  Janette and I have a particular fondness for this ship, we’ve been on holiday aboard Oriana, – we’d first encountered the Oriana when we were on a cruise on the MV Canberra in 1994, and the then brand new Oriana, on her second voyage passed us at sea.  There was much enthusiasm on board both ships as they passed within a few hundred yards of each other, blowing their horns; Canberra releasing hundreds of red white and blue balloons, and loud strains of ‘Rule Britannia’ wafting across the sea.  P&O turned it into a patriotic occasion that no doubt also did the company’s image much good. Continue reading MV Oriana

Hillsborough, Co.Down

Hillsborough is one of the trendy, affluent areas of Northern Ireland.  Situated on the A1 between Dromore and Lisburn, Hillsborough boasts a fine park with a lake, historic buildings, a fort, and even a Royal Residence (Hillsborough Castle).

I visited the town for a ‘walk with a camera’ one morning recently, when the sun was shining and it was around 24 degress celsius.  Here’s a few of the images…

Hillsborough Main Street.

Hillsborough_01 GA

Continue reading Hillsborough, Co.Down

Dromore, Co.Down

On the way to Banbridge, Janette and I stopped in Dromore, primarily for an ice-cream in Graham’s, but who coud resist making a few images of the historic town while we’re in the area.  Dromore’s history as a town goes back at least to the times of John deCourcy in the early 13th century, when a Motte and Bailey was built.  The town was captured by Robert the Bruce (he of spider fame) in 1315, and sacked.  Before this there was an abbey of monks (Canons Regular) dating back to the sixth century. Continue reading Dromore, Co.Down

Percy French Country

The Irish poet and songwriter, Percy French immortalised Newcastle, Co.Down in his famous song…

Oh, Mary, this London’s a wonderful sight
With people here working by day and by night
They don’t sow potatoes, nor barley nor wheat
But there’ gangs of them digging for gold in the streets
At least when I asked them that’s what I was told
So I just took a hand at this diggin’ for gold
But for all that I found there I might as well be
Where the Mountains of Mourne sweep down to the sea.

Tonight, on the hottest day of the year in Northern Ireland, I visited Newcastle, and made some images around the town… Continue reading Percy French Country