Free historical lectures to shed light on our past

Market Street leading on to High Street, Lurgan in c.1907
Market Street leading on to High Street, Lurgan in c.1907

The first in a series of free annual lectures will take place across Lurgan this autumn, with the aim of exploring the origins and development of the historical town in the 17th century.

Throughout October and November in various locations across Lurgan, a series of free talks will see expert speakers delve into the history of the town by exploring the area’s Plantation origins, the meanings of its place names and the impact of both significant and local historical events on the area.

Aiming to increase understanding and knowledge of Lurgan’s unique history and heritage, the lecture series will help the local community reconnect with their town and strengthen their sense of identity.

The first in the free lecture series begins tonight (Tuesday, October 8) at Lurgan Library (7.30pm-9pm) and will see Desmond McCabe from the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland discuss ‘Documenting Lurgan in the PRONI archives’.

The second talk will take place on Monday, October 14 at Brownlow House (7.30pm-9pm) when Prof. Mícheál O Mannion and Dr. Frances Kane examine ‘Place-names in Lurgan and the South Armagh district: From the Plantation to the Present’.

Prof. Raymond Gillespie will then investigate ‘Lurgan’s First Century: the origins and growth of a town in the Bann Valley’ on Monday, October 28 at St. Peter’s Parish Centre (7.30pm-9pm).

And then on Tuesday, November 5 at Lurgan Town Hall (7.30pm-9pm) Dr. Naomi McAreavey will provide an analysis of ‘Lurgan and the 1641 Rebellion’.

The series will draw to a close on Monday, November 11 with Dr. Francis X. McCorry as he explores ‘Lurgan in Action, 1670-1713’ at Friends (Quaker) Meeting House (7.30pm-9pm).

Supported by Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council and The National Lottery Heritage Fund, the lecture series is part of the Lurgan Townscape Heritage (LTH) initiative.

Over the next five years, the Lurgan Townscape Heritage (LTH) initiative will focus on revitalising the built heritage of Lurgan town centre and celebrating the town’s unique historical beauty and character.

Admission to the lectures is totally free and no booking is required, so simply come along and learn about the local area.

For further information on the lectures and the Lurgan Townscape Heritage scheme, please visit facebook.com/LurganTH/ or contact Tony Morgan, Project Manager 028 3831 2545, or David Weir, Education and Activities Officer 028 3831 3604.