Glenavy Parish Church

Book Extract

The following are extracts from the "Statistical Account or Parochial Survey of Ireland – Parishes of Glenavy, Camlin & Tullyrusk" by the Rev. Edward Cupples.

The old church of Glenavy was a plain stone edifice, plastered with roughcast, without a spire or tower and stood immediately in front of the south wall of the present building. It was fifty-eight feet long, by nineteen feet and a half wide; the entrance being on the south, through a porch, on the door of which was formerly inscribed the date 1664. The north and south walls were each supported by two buttresses. There were two rows of seats in it, with a small gallery, containing in all 31 pews, and affording convenient accommodation to about three hundred persons. The time when it was erected, is unknown; but an addition to the west end was made in the year 1717. Being too small for the congregation, it was taken down in the year 1812. Some old people relate, on the authority of persons who were then living, that when the army of James 11 was extending its ravages, this church escaped their notice by its low situation, being concealed in the deep forest which then covered most of the country. Previous to this time, the curate, whose name was Arthur Moore, conformed to the Roman Catholic religion, and occasioned the secession of many of the congregation, and his own expulsion in the succeeding reign.

It is said that the burying ground originally belonging to the church of Glenavy, was situated at some distance from it, in an angle formed by the Glenavy and Pigeontown Roads, near Mr. Forsythe’s house. This tradition is corroborated by the fact, that human skulls and other bones, have been frequently found in that spot.

The records of the union are, a registry of baptisms, marriages, burials, and acts of vestry, in one volume, commencing in the year 1707; a registry in parchment, of baptisms and marriages commencing in the year 1813; and a book, containing the acts of vestry, commencing in the year 1814. The registry of burials is still continued in the old book of 1707. These records are kept in the church, under lock and key.

The church is advantageously placed for the purposes of devotion, in a calm retired situation, along the banks of the river of Glenavy, at a short distance from the town; the approach to it being by a long avenue, lined on each side with a row of venerable ash trees. It is a handsome modern building, 60 feet long, by 32 wide, with a tower and spire, and a gallery. The inside is neatly finished, the pews being uniform, and of an oak colour; and the ceiling decorated with a cornice and stucco work. There are four tier of seats, two on each side, and two in the centre, with two alleys. The total number of pews amounts to sixty, most of which are double.

The old church being too small for the increasing population of the country, it became necessary either to enlarge it, or build a new one. The former resolution was at first adopted; but the walls being found insufficient, it was relinquished, and a new church determined on. For this purpose, a sum of 150 l was presented at the vestry; to which the Marquis of Hertford, with his usual liberality, added a donation of 100 l; and the Countess of Longford, though not an inhabitant, generously gave 20 l. This fund was still inadequate to the object; and the work would have been delayed, perhaps abandoned, had not the Lord Bishop of Down and Connor, the Right Reverend Dr. Nathaniel Alexander, secured its progress, by his exertions in obtaining from the Board of First Fruits, a donation of 200 l, and a loan of 250 l; thus adding another to the may proofs, which the diocese exhibits of his unremitting care, in the numerous churches and glebe-houses, which he has been the means of erecting in various parts of it. A further sum of 500 l 11s was raised by auctioning the situations to build pews, and to complete the work; and after the foundation stone had been laid on the 12th of June 1812, the doors were opened to the congregation on the 24th of April, 1814.

The churchwardens for the present year, are Messrs. John Ferris, and William Bryans; and the sidesmen, Messrs. William Gregory, and David Patterson.

Marriage – Henry Bell and Matilda Jane McDonald

The following is an extract from the Belfast Newsletter dated 17th June 1828 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

By special license, at Glenavy Church, by the Rev. Edw. Cupples, Mr Henry bell, Merchant, Crumlin to Matilda Jane, second daughter of Dr. McDonald of same place.

Marriage – James McCluskey and Martha Mitchell

The following is an extract from the Belfast Newsletter dated February 13, 1829 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.


On the 6th inst in Glenavy Church by the Rev. Danl. Bell, Mr. James McCluskey, Knockbrack, County Derry, to Miss Martha Mitchell of Crumlin.

Marriage – John Davison and Rosanna Neison

The following is an extract from the Belfast Newsletter dated 24th February 1830 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Marriage: On Tuesday last, at Glenavy Church, Mr. John Davison, Ballydonaghy, merchant tailor, to Miss Rosanna Neison, eldest daughter of Mr. William Neison, boot and shoe maker, Crumlin.

Marriage – William Nettleton and Mary-Anne Walkington

The following is an extract from the Belfast Newsletter dated 30th November 1830 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Marriage: On the 21st inst in the Church of Glenavy, by the Rev. Daniel Bell, Mr. Wm Nettleton, Innkeeper, Belfast, to Mrs Mary-Anne Walkington, of Crumlin.

Marriage – Leonard Ferguson and Charlotte Ferris

The following is an extract from the Belfast Newsletter dated 2nd December, 1831 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Marriage: On Tuesday last, in Glenavy Church, by the Rev. Mr. Bell, Mr Leonard John Ferguson, Merchant, Belfast, to Charlotte, third daughter of Mr. John Ferris, of Glenavy.

Deaths – Miss Johnson and Robert Bell

The following are extracts from the Belfast Newsletter dated 13th January, 1832 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Deaths: On the 10th inst Miss Johnson of Glenavy, aged 31 years.

On the 8th inst., at his house in Aughadalgon, Mr. Robert Bell aged 69.

NB: Both are buried at Glenavy Parish Church. The burial records show that Robert Bell was buried on the 10th January 1832, and Sarah Johnston was buried on the 12th January 1832.

Death – Jane Colburn

The following is an extract from the Belfast Newsletter dated 3rd July 1832 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Death: On the 18th ult. Miss Jane Colburn, daughter of Mr. John Colburn, Ballinacoy, near Glenavy.

Marriage – James Nettleton and Elizabeth Patterson

The following are extracts from the Belfast Newsletter dated 18th January 1833 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Marriages: On the 7th inst in Glenavy Church by the Rev Danl. Bell, Mr. James Nettleton of Gortnagallon, Killead, to Elizabeth, second daughter of Mr. Hungerford Patterson, of Ballyvannen.

Marriage – Alex Ingram and Mary Ingram

The following are extracts from the Belfast Newsletter dated 18th January 1833 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

On the 6th inst in Glenavy Church, by the Rev. Mr. Daniel, Mr. Alex Ingram of Hillhead, to Mary, youngest daughter of Mr. Wm Ingram of Loughside.

Glenavy Parish Church 1830s

The following extract is from "Ordnance Survey Memoirs of Ireland – Parishes of County Antrim VII 1832 – 1838". Thanks to The Institute of Irish Studies, The Queen’s University of Belfast for permission to use this extract.

Ecclesiastical Union

Glenavy is a vicarage in the diocese of Connor and archdiocese of Armagh, being episcopally united to the parishes of Camlin and Tullyrusk. It is a lay impropriation in the advowson of the Marquis of Hertford, who receives the rectorial tithes. The precise year in which the union took place is not known, but by a regal visitation book deposited among the records of the court of prerogative that there was a union so early as the year 1633. The present incumbent is the Reverend E. Cupples, who receives the vicarial tithes by an amicable composition with his parishioners. They vary from 6d to 10d ha’penny per acre. The church is situated in this part of the union, on the banks of Glenavy river and a short distance north of the village. It is a plain neat edifice and there is a good glebe house in the adjacent parish of Camlin.

Glenavy – Religion

This parish is especially united to those of Camlin and Tullyrusk, and constitutes a vicarage of which the Reverend Edward Cupples is vicar. He reside in Lisburn. The vicarial tithes amount to 380 pounds per annum and the lay tithes to 101 pounds per annum. The vicar keeps but 1 curate, who resides in the parish of Camlin. The parish church is in the village of Glenavy.” At this time the memoirs tell us there were 1,589 Episcopalians, 282 Presbyterians and 1,484 Roman Catholics in this parish in the revised census of 1834.

Glenavy – Public Buildings

It contains a church and a Methodist meeting house. The cost of the erection of this church amounts to 1,220 pounds, 450 pounds of which was furnished by the Board of First fruits and the remaining 770 pounds was raised by presentment and subscription. It is a plain building and within the last few years has had an addition of a square turret, the corners of which are ornamented and consequently, from a distance, gives it the appearance of a handsome building. The church is a neat edifice erected in the year 1812. There are 47 seats in the aisle, would contain 288 persons; 15 seats in gallery, would contain 76 persons; dimensions 60 feet by 30.

The memoirs also state:

The public buildings consist of a church, a Methodist meeting house and a bridge. The church is very prettily situated in the valley along the river and a little retired from the street. It is a very pretty village church with a neat square tower ornamented with 4 crocketted pinnacles and containing a good clock with 3 dials. The church measures 60 feet long and 30 feet wide, and contains accommodation for 400 persons. It contains a gallery and is very neatly and comfortably fitted up internally. It was erected in 1812 at a cost of 1,220, of which 500 pounds was given and 250 lent by the Board of First fruits, 150 pounds presented at the vestry, 300 pounds given by the Marquis of Hertford and 20 pounds given by the Countess of Longford.

Disorderly conduct fine paid to the parish poor

The following extract is from the Belfast Newsletter dated 3rd April 1832 and is used with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

The Rev. Edward Cupples has received from Fortescue Gregg, Esq, J.P. for the poor of the parish of Glenavy, 5s – being a fine paid by a yeoman for disorderly conduct in Crumlin market.

Marriage – Alex Ingram to Mary Ingram

The following is an extract from the Belfast Newsletter dated January 18 1833 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.


On the 6th inst in Glenavy Church, by the Rev. Mr. Daniel (Bell?), Mr. Alex Ingram of Hillhead to Mary, youngest daughter of Mr. Wm Ingram, of Loughside.

Thom’s Almanac & Official Directory — 1845

The following is an extract from 1845 Thom’s Almanac & Official Directory

Ecclesiastical directory – Glenavy – Incumbent: Edward Cupples, post town: Lisburn

Curate: Daniel Bell, Post town Glenavy.

Lych Gate Memorial Plaque

Lych-gate memorial plaque

Lych-gate memorial plaque at Glenavy Parish Church

Hugh Gordon grave

Gordon Family grave

Gordon Family grave

One of the headstones in Glenavy Parish Church graveyard located on the right-hand side of the grounds as you enter through the lych-gate refers to the Gordon family from Ballymacward. The headstone is inscribed "Ballymcilward".


Sarah Gordon of BallymcIlward
In memory of my Beloved Husband
HUGH GORDON who died 3rd April 1854
aged 60 yrs.
Also his son WILLIAM who died in Infancy.

Also the above named SARAH GORDON

who died 4th Dec.1887 aged 80 yrs.

Hugh Gordon was a well-known violin maker from Stoneyford. Michael Costello has carried out some excellent research on Hugh Gordon which is available on Michael’s website.

Marriage – Smyth / Corken

The following is an extract from the Belfast Newsletter dated 01 May 1854 and has been used with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.


April 27, at Derriaghy Church, by the Rev. R. Johnson Smyth, Vicar of Glenavy, assisted by the Rev. Thomas Thompson, Matthew Johnson Smyth, Esq., son of Thomas Johnson Smyth, Esq., J.P., D.L., Lisburn, county Antrim, to Elizabeth, daughter of the late Rev. John Corken, Vicar of Aghalee.

Vestryman grateful for donation

The following extract is from the Belfast Newsletter dated 25th December 1871 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Glenavy Parish – At a public meeting of the select vestrymen of the parish of Glenavy, held on Thursday evening last, after the usual business was transacted, the following resolution was proposed by Captain Douglass, J.P., seconded by Arthur Mussen, Esq., M.D., and unanimously agree to : "That the best thanks of the select vestrymen be given to the representatives of the late Miss Stewart for the very liberal donation of £100 to the parish of Glenavy, and the select vestrymen desire to take the present opportunity of expressing their sincere sympathy with the immediate friends of the late Miss Stewart, but especially Mrs. Smyth under the very trying circumstances in which they have been placed, and the loss they and the parish have sustained by her death." Proposed by Mr. Joseph English, seconded by Mr. James Lorimer, and agreed to:- "That the Rev. E. Johnson Smyth, vicar of the parish, forward a copy of the above resolution to the relatives of the late Miss Stewart."

Glenavy Parish Reports — 1875 and 1876

Glenavy Parish Report 1875

Glenavy Parish Report 1875

Report of the Select Vestry of the Parish of Glenavy
Diocese of Connor
For the year 1875.

Incumbent: The Rev. Edward Johnson Smith, The Glebe, Glenavy

Curate: The Rev. Joseph Hamilton Bennett, Glenavy

Parochial Nominators: Capt. George Dowglass, J.P.; Dr. A. Mussen; Mr William Fitzgerald

Synodsmen: Capt. Geo. Dowglass J.P., Thomas J. Smyth, Esq., J.P., Dr. A. Mussen, Mr Wm. Fitzgerald, Mr. James Lorimer, Mr. Joseph English

Churchwardens: Mr James Lorimer, Mr. Joseph English

Select Vestry: The Incumbent, Curate, Churchwardens and
Capt. Geo. Dowglass, J.P., Thos. J. Smyth, Esq., J.P., Dr. A. Mussen, Mr Wm. Wheeler. Mr. Wm Fitzgerald. Mr. Robert Jebb, Mr. John Oakman, Mr. Francis Barnes, Mr. Robert Gresham, Mr. John Wicliff, Mr. James Johnston, Mr. Joseph Fitzgerald.

Rev. E. Johnson Smyth, Treasurer

Joseph English, Hon. Secretary

Glenavy Parish Church Report 1876

Glenavy Parish Church Report 1876

Report of the Select Vestry of the Parish of Glenavy
Diocese of Connor
For the year 1876.

Incumbent: The Rev. Edward Johnson Smith, The Glebe, Glenavy

Curates: The Rev.Alexander Stewart Melville, and The Rev. John Leslie, Glenavy

Parochial Nominators: Capt. George Dowglass, J.P.; Dr. A. Mussen; Mr William Fitzgerald

Synodsmen: Capt. Geo. Dowglass J.P., Thomas J. Smyth, Esq., J.P., Arthur Mussen, Esq., M.D., Mr Wm. Fitzgerald, Mr. James Lorimer, Mr. Joseph English

Churchwardens: Mcapt. Geo. Dowglass, J.P. James Lorimer, Mr. Joseph English

Select Vestry: The Incumbent, Curates, Churchwardens and
Thos. J. Smyth, Esq., J.P., Arthur Mussen, Esq., M.D. Mr Wm. Wheeler. Mr. Wm Fitzgerald. Mr. John Oakman, Mr. Francis Barnes, Mr. Robert Gresham, Mr. John Wicliff, Mr. James Johnston, Mr. Joseph Fitzgerald, Mr. William Cairns, Mr. James Lorimer

Rev. E. Johnson Smyth, Treasurer

Joseph English, Hon. Secretary


The Select Vestry of the Parish of Glenavy are again called upon to present to the Parishioners a Statement of Accounts for the year 1876. In doing so, they regret not to be able to report as favourably as they could desire, the Treasurer’s Account showing a small balance against the Parish, at the close of the year. The Vestry would, therefore, earnestly appeal to the Parishioners to help in placing the Parochial Funds on a more satisfactory footing. After paying the annual assessment of £200 to the Diocesan Council, the Treasurer will scarcely have in hands, even taking into account the Monthly Collections, what will meet the current expenses of the present year. An effort is therefore required to increase the funds.

The Vestry desire to take this opportunity of informing the Parishioners that the additional piece of ground added to the Glenavy Churchyard was consecrated by the Lord Bishop of the Diocese on Friday, the 20th October last, and the cost defrayed from a fund raised for the purpose.

They wish to intimate that the Church will require painting and repairs during the present year, and that a special fund will have to be raised to meet the expense. The Select Vestry confidently hope they may reckon on the liberal assistance of all right-minded Churchmen, who have the means, in their endeavour to carry out this necessary and desirable object. "Let every man do as he is disposed in his own heart, not grudgingly, nor of necessity, for God loveth a cheerful giver."

1st February, 1877

Subscriptions for the year ending 31st December, 1876

Parish of Glenavy
Constantine Dogherty 0 10 0
Arthur Peel 0 7 0
John Courtney 0 3 6
Mrs. Jacob Thompson 0 5 0
1 5 6
John Colburn 1 2 6
Miss Durham 1 2 6
James Thompson 0 5 0
William Fleeton 0 5 0
Mrs. Downey 0 3 6
James McNiece 0 2 6
Robert Thompson 0 2 6
James Evans 0 2 6
Richard Smyth 0 2 0
3 8 0
John Johnston 1 0 0
Mrs. Bryans 0 10 0
John Clendinning 0 5 0
Alexander Young 0 5 0
2 0 0
John Steele 0 5 0
James Farr 0 2 6
0 7 6
Thos. J. Smyth, Esq., J.P. 5 0 0
Mrs. Bell 1 0 0
William Sloan 0 6 0
Robert Peel 0 5 0
John Thompson 0 3 0
Thomas Cardwell 0 2 6
John Steele 0 2 6
6 19 0
George McMullen 1 0 0
Thomas Burrowes 0 7 6
Robert Sloan 0 5 0
Samuel Corbett 0 3 6
Joseph Savage 0 3 0
John Sloan 0 3 0
James Kennedy 0 3 0
William F. Reid 0 3 0
Thomas Steele 0 2 6
John McGahey 0 2 6
George Hendron 0 2 6
William Bolton 0 2 6
2 18 0
Samuel Ballance 0 15 0
James Ballance 0 10 0
William Cairns 0 10 0
James Smyth 0 8 0
Jane Johnston 0 5 0
William James Smyth 0 5 0
Robert Bailey 0 4 0
Robert Peel 0 3 0
James Thompson 0 2 6
Nancy Wilson 0 2 0
James Witherup 0 1 0
3 5 6
Joseph Fitzgerald 1 7 6
Andrew Bell 0 5 0
William Cairns 0 5 0
Thomas Farr 0 5 0
James Farr 0 3 0
Samuel Thompson 0 2 6
2 8 0
William Ingram 0 15 0
Edward Johnston 0 10 0
Oliver Ingram 0 10 0
Mrs. A. Bell 0 7 6
Meredith Bell 0 4 6
James Ross 0 3 0
J. Lowry 0 2 0
Arthur McConkey 0 1 0
Samuel McConkey 0 1 0
1 14 0
James Hull 0 7 6
Mrs. Rollins 0 6 0
Richard Moore 0 2 6
0 16 0
Joseph Neill 0 5 0
James Johnston 0 5 0
William Cardwell 0 5 0
Samuel Green 0 3 0
Edward Reid 0 3 6
Thomas Thompson 0 3 0
George Addis 0 3 0
William F. Reid 0 4 0
Robert Higginson 0 3 0
David Sloan 0 2 6
Nelson Reid 0 2 6
William John Higginson 0 2 6
Isaac Scott 0 2 6
Thomas E. Higginson 0 2 0
2 6 6
Robert Jebb 2 0 0
Mrs. W.J. Gregory 1 5 0
James Knox 1 0 0
Joseph Johnston 0 12 6
David McQuilland 0 7 6
Thomas Knox 0 5 0
Edward Johnston 0 5 0
William Maxwell 0 5 0
Robert Thompson 0 4 0
George Wallace 0 2 6
George Laird 0 2 6
Thomas Bell 0 2 6
Alexander Hanna 0 2 6
James H. Johnston 0 2 6
William Murphy 0 2 6
John Totton, sen. 0 2 6
Richard Farr 0 2 6
James Fraser 0 2 6
William Wilkinson 0 2 0
John Grant 0 1 6
David Grant 0 1 6
Abraham Totton 0 1 6
Philip Totton 0 1 6
John Totton, jun. 0 1 6
Robert Totton 0 1 0
Robert McDonald 0 1 0
7 17 6
James Lorimer 3 0 0
3 0 0
William Fitzgerald 3 0 0
Thomas McGarrel 0 12 6
William Kerr 0 10 0
Thomas Gregory 0 10 0
Henry Cardwell 0 4 0
Francis Haslett 0 2 6
William McGarrel 0 2 6
James Lowry 0 2 0
Andrew Bickerstaff 0 1 0
Joseph Bickerstaff 0 1 0
5 5 6
A. Mussen, Esq., M.D. 3 10 0
Mrs. Starkie 3 0 0
Rev. J. Leslie 2 0 0
Misses Donaldson 1 10 0
Miss Ferris 1 5 0
Mrs. Downer 1 0 0
Miss Johnston 1 0 0
Robert McMillen 1 0 0
George Ferris 0 12 6
H.R. Kidney 0 10 0
Thomas Clendinning 0 4 0
Miss Dickson 0 5 0
William Hunter 0 2 6
Aaron Stratton 0 2 6
Langford Shane 0 2 6
Mary Gardner 0 2 6
Francis Colburn 0 2 6
16 9 0
Ram’s Island
Alexander Nelson 0 3 0
0 3 0
William John Phillips 0 15 0
Robert Garrett 0 10 0
Thomas Johnston 0 10 0
John Wickliff 0 7 6
James Wickliff 0 5 0
Alexander Courtney 0 4 0
2 11 6
Jonathan Bell 0 12 6
0 12 6
Parish of Camlin
John Bell 1 0 0
James Nelson 0 10 0
John Corken 0 10 0
Robert Bell 0 6 6
Miss Bell 0 5 0
William Whiteside 0 5 0
John Hughes 0 2 6
Henry Frazer 0 2 6
Rev E.J. Smyth 10 0 0
John Ingram 0 10 0
James Ferris 0 10 0
George Quigley 0 7 6
Miss Allen 0 5 0
Mrs. John Millar 0 2 6
John Jamison 0 2 6
William Hutchinson 0 1 0
11 18 6
John White 1 0 0
1 0 0
Edward Bell 1 10 0
1 10 0
Benjamin Oakman 2 0 0
Francis Barrons 1 10 0
Robert Gresham 1 10 0
Mrs. Minnis 1 5 0
William Bullick 1 0 0
Thomas Miller 0 10 0
William Colburn 0 7 6
Robert Willis 0 7 0
William Ranton 0 5 0
Thomas Addis 0 5 0
John Montgomery 0 5 0
John Bolton 0 5 0
Anthony Richardson 0 5 0
Thomas Smyth 0 5 0
Joseph McCaul 0 4 0
Thomas McDonald 0 4 0
John Farr 0 3 0
Joseph McElvenna 0 3 0
Thomas McClunney 0 3 0
Miss Durham 0 2 6
George White 0 2 6
11 1 6
Rev. A.H. Pakenham 30 0 0
Jonathan Peel 5 0 0
Joseph English 5 0 0
Rev. H. Haire 2 0 0
Rev.A.S. Melville 2 0 0
Hiram Farr 1 10 0
John Bell 1 0 0
Isaac Cousins 1 0 0
Mrs. A.J. Dickson 0 10 0
Henry Dornan 0 10 0
Robert Johnston 0 10 0
David Ferguson 0 10 0
Arthur Fenton 0 7 6
James Patterson 0 7 0
William Kirkpatrick 0 5 0
Thomas Quigley 0 5 0
Isaac Hull 0 5 0
David Robinson 0 5 0
James Rogers, R.I.C. 0 5 0
Joseph Harvey 0 4 0
Samuel Little 0 4 0
Allen Bickerstaff 0 3 0
James Neeson 0 2 6
52 3 0
John Oakman 3 0 0
William J. Ingram 1 0 0
Robert Higginson 0 10 0
Miss McCoy 0 10 0
William Dobson 0 3 6
5 3 6
Capt. G. Dowglass, J.P. 10 0 0
Frederick White 0 3 0
William J Clifford 0 2 6
10 5 6
Parish of Tullyrusk
Mrs Gill 1 0 0
Shaw Armstrong 0 10 0
Samuel Leslie 0 6 0
Robert Wilson 0 5 0
Thomas Armstrong 0 5 0
2 6 0
William Wheeler 1 10 0
Egar Cormican 0 7 6
James Kirkpatrick 0 5 0
Thomas Green 0 5 0
James McCartney 0 3 0
Matthew Nutt 0 2 6
John Dogherty 0 2 6
2 15 6
Rev. E. Johnson Smyth in Account with the Parishioners for the year 1876
To balance from last year 7 5 10
To subscription from Sir. R. Wallace 60 0 0
To subscription from Rev. A. Pakenham 30 0 0
To parochial Contributions to the Sustentation fund 134 17 6
To one year’s interest on Sexton’s Composition money 2 2 4
To monthly collections:
  Glenavy 10 15 0
  Crumlin 7 0 2
  Femore 1 13 3
11 8 5
Balance 1 13 11
£258 8 0
January 3 – Parochial Assessment for 1875 200 0 0
Feb 17 Paid by Mr English for printing reports (1874) Postage, Stationary, and for fuel and lighting – Crumlin 4 5 0
Aug 28 Painting 2 new entrances – Glenavy 1 10 0
Aug 28 New Hymn-Books for choir and services 1 8 0
Aug 28 Fire Insurance – Church 0 12 0
Dec 14 Mr English for printing Reports of 1875, postage, stationery, circulars, &c.
Conducting the choir, and playing Harmonium – 1 year
25 0 0
Sextons’ Salaries: – Glenavy 5 0 0
  Crumlin 1 12 0
  Feumore 2 10 0
Fuel for the church 10 2 0
Fuel for Femore 3 13 0
Lighting the Church 2 5 5
Sacramental Elements 0 18 0
Washing church and Feumore Linen 0 15 0
Sundry repairs 2 0 4
£256 8 0
E. Johnson Smyth, Treasurer, The Glebe, Glenavy, 1st February, 1877
Sundry Parochial Collections for 1876
Church Collection for Protestant Orphan Society 6 5 9
Church Collection for Church Education Society 4 5 10
Collecting cards for the Protestant Orphan Society 17 11 6
Collected for Missionary Societies, as per Report 28 4 0
Offertory 18 6 2
£75 13 3
Paid to the treasurers of the Church Education Society 4 5 10
To Protestant Orphan Society 23 17 3
To Church Missionary Society 8 10 0
To Irish Society 8 8 6
To Irish Church Missions 4 10 0
To Jews’ Society 7 0 0
To Printing Missionary Report 0 15 6
Monthly Distribution of Poors’ Money 9 14 0
To the poor at Christmas 5 13 5
Distributed by the Clergymen to the Poor 2 18 9
£75 13 3
The Treasurer of the Glenavy Improvement Fund in account with the Select Vestry
To balance in hands of Treasurer at close of 1875 as per report 7 9 11
To cash from Mr William Jebb, of Liverpool 1 0 0
To cash from Sir Richard Wallace, Bart 10 0 0
To Balance due Treasurer 1 2 5
£19 12 4
By cash paid Labour Work and material at Graveyard 5 3 10
By cash paid Thorn Quicks, Shrubs, &c 4 12 0
By cash paid Fee -Farm Grant and Registrar’s Fees
For new burying ground
9 16 0
£19 12 4

1st February 1877

Earl of Chesterfield marries Catherine Jane Bond

The following extract is from the Belfast Newsletter dated 19th March 1877 reproduced with permission of the Belfast Newsletter


March 7 – at Glenavy Parish Church, by the Rev. E. Johnston-Smyth, Vicar of Glenavy, George Philip Stanhope, Earl of Chesterfield, to Catherine Jane Jarvis, daughter of the late John Hildebrand Bond, of Belfast, formerly of the County Derry.

An 1885 Baptism

October 25 1885
Glenavy Glebe


You have brought your child to be Baptized. You have begun well. You have thus outwardly professed to bring your little one to Jesus. Now you must daily strive to bring up the child for Jesus.

As to-day you carry your infant from the Font the Lord Jesus seems to say, "Take this child away and nurse it for Me, and I will give thee thy wages." Ex. 11.9.

Think of what is committed to your care and training:-

A Soul – a thinking, feeling, loving soul, capable of becoming so beautiful or so bad!
An immortal soul – never dying, that must live for ever!
A redeemed soul – bought with the precious blood of Jesus!
A soul dear to God – more loved by Him than it is even by you.
A soul that may be saved – saved from sin, saved to eternal joy; or that may be lost – lost in sin, lost in everlasting woe.

Now "do not sin against the child,"
Gen. Xlii. 22

You will care for its body, and see that it is suitably fed and properly clothed.
You will care for its mind, and see that it is taught the lessons necessary for this life. Think not this is all. Care for your child’s soul.
But how can you truly teach of Jesus unless you know Him?
How can you train your child to pray (not merely to say its prayers) unless you pray?
How can you lead your child to heaven unless you go along the road.
Show the child you love God’s mercy-seat, you love God’s Word, you love God’s house, you love God’s service.
Children are quick to see through all pretences – therefore be real. Let your child look upon your daily conduct, and learn as a reality, from your life as well as from your lips, that there is a loving Father in heaven, whose service is joy, who "careth for us."
Do not say to them "Go" – go to Church, but "Come" – that is the sweetest, most inviting word, "Come, let us go up to the House of the Lord."
So lovingly, firmly, and wisely train and restrain your children, by the help of God, that they may grow to be a blessing, rise up to call you “blessed,” and with you for ever dwell in the bright and better Home.

Your faithful Friend and Pastor.

Charles Watson, Glenavy

Glenavy Baptism Card, 1885

Glenavy Baptism Card, 1885

Given to …
At the Baptism of

Date: October 25th ’85.

The following was found on the rear of the Baptism card:

The Baby

Another little wave
Upon the sea of life –
Another soul to save,
Amid its toil and strife.

Two more little feet,
To walk the dusty road;
To choose where two paths meet,
The narrow and the broad.

Two more little hands,
To work for good or ill;
Two more little eyes,
Another little will.

Another heart to love,
Receiving love again;
O let not all Thy grace,
FATHER, be spent in vain.

Thou didst Thine only Son
For my child freely give,
May it henceforth be Thine,
For ever to Thee live.

Fun day out for school children

The following is an extract from the Lisburn Standard Dated Saturday August 1st 1885

Church of Ireland

Parish of Glenavy – On Wednesday last, a treat was given to the children of the parish attending the Glenavy, Feumore and Crumlin Sunday-schools. The children of Glenavy and Crumlin assembled at the Parochial School, where they were met by the Feumore contingent, who arrived on breaks and cars, and to the number of 240 marched in procession to the Parish Church at half past twelve. A short service from the office of Morning Prayer, beginning at the creed, having been said, and the lesson read by the Rev. W.J. Munce, M.A. curate, a few kindly words were spoken to the children, and a hymn having been sung, they filed out of church, while a voluntary was played by Miss McBride. At the end of the avenue they were met by the Glenavy Brass Band, and with flags and banners flying marched to the Glebe Lawn. Milk, which some kind hearted members of the congregation supplied in abundance, and bans having been distributed, games were begun, and the whole afternoon was joyously spent by the children in competing for prizes, of which there was a very large assortment. The scene was one on which the eye rested with pleasure – the bright dresses of the children, the flags and banners floating on the lawn, and the crowds of visitors under the trees making a lovely picture . At half past four grace was sung, and tea was served out, first to the children, and them to all the visitors. Duringthe afternoon many drove up the avenue to watch the sports, Captain Dowglass, J.P., and Mrs. Dowglass; Mrs Mussen; Mrs Lorimer; Miss Donaldson; the Misses Rhodes; the Misses English; Mrs. Bullick; Mrs Willis; Mrs Corkin; Mr Oakman and others expressing their pleasure at the animated scene. The routine of the day’s sport was admirably carried out under the energetic superintendence of Dr. Mussen, Messrs English, Oakman and Dowglass; the younger children being kept in good spirits by the energy of Miss Finlay, Miss Watson, Miss Dowglass, and others. A bag of sweets having been given to each scholar, and a prize to each unsuccessful competitor, balloons were let off, the delight of the children being indescribable as they watched them gracefully ascend. A few words having been spoken by Rev. C. Watson, and by Messrs. English and Oakman, the doxology was sung, and the band having played "God Save the Queen" the children, cheering lustily their thanks for the pleasant day, formed in procession, and marched to Glenavy Bridge, where thanks having been given to the members of the band, all separated to their homes. The crowds who were assembled deserve the highest praise for their behaviour, for, though freely allowed to roam at pleasure, not a flower or shrub was injured.

Laurelvale Sunday School

The following is an extract from the Belfast Newsletter dated 05 01 1886 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Church of Ireland

Glenavy Parish – Laurelvale Sunday School – The annual soiree and distribution of prizes in connection with this Sunday School was held on the last evening of the old year. The arrangement by the superintendent, Mr. J. English, Crumlin, afforded a most enjoyable entertainment to the children and their friends. After tea a number of splendid prizes were distributed to the children who had attended 43 Sundays by the Rev. A.H. Pakenham, Langford Lodge, who takes a deep interest in the prosperity of the school, and who gave an interesting and impressive address. The Rev. C Watson carried out a capital programme of songs, recitations, and addresses, which was contributed to by the following ladies and gentlemen: – Mrs Watson, Miss English, the Misses Newell, Miss Mussen, Miss H Alexander, and Dr. Mussen, Mr. Newell, B.A. T.C.D.; Mr. W. Dowglass T.C.D.; Mr. A. Peel and the Rev. W. Munce, M.A., curate of Glenavy. Oranges and sweets were distributed during the evening, and the children separated at nine o’clock, highly pleased with the happy evening they spent.

Easter Vestry — 1887

He following is an extract from The Lisburn Standard – April 16th 1887.

Parish of Glenavy

The annual Easter Vestry was held in Glenavy Schoolroom, on Easter Monday evening, at 7.30 p.m. After prayer, and the reading of the minutes by Mr. J. English, hon. Secretary , the vicar nominated A. Mussem Esq., M.D., as clergyman’s warden, and Mr. W. Gresham was chosen as people’s. Messrs. Charles Quigley and T. Sloane were appointed sidesmen. The names of the select vestry chosen are as follow:- Captain Dowglass, J.P.; Messrs. W. Fitzgerald, R. Jebb, J.G.Oakman, W. Wheeler, J. Wickliffe, J. Lorimer, J. Corken, Joseph English, H. Ballance, J. Smyth, and J. Hendron.

A picture of the church taken from an old parish report dated 1888

A picture of the church taken from an old parish report dated 1888

Christmas Festivities

The following is an extract from The Lisburn Herald – Saturday January 19th 1889

Entertainments in Glenavy Parish

The merry season was begun by a congregational conversations held in the Protestant Hall on the 20th ult. A large Christmas tree, presented by Mr. S.S. Briggs, of Glenconway, and two work stalls had been furnished beforehand by the ladies of the congregation, with knick knacks suitable for Christmas Presents, all of which found ready purchasers. The refreshment-table presided over by Mrs. Mussen, Mrs Loriner, and Mrs White was liberally patronised; and much amusement and interest were excited by the electric machine and foreign curiosities which Mr. English contributed and had in charge. The children’s illuminated tree in the lower hall gave unbounded delight to young and old. During the evening some charades were gone through, the people showing keen interest in trying to find out the word portrayed. The Lisburn Orchestral Society, under the leadership of Mr Weir, contributed a number of items to the musical portion of the entertainment. The hall was handsomely decorated for the occasion by the ladies, under the direction of Dr. Mussen, Mr. Lorimer, and Rev. R.J. Sides. A good sum was realised towards forming a fund for the heating of the parish church. Christmas Day, though very wet, found a large congregation at church, the service being very bright and hearty. The "story of Bethlehem", by Rev, F.W. Hogan, was sung instead of an anthem, and the psalms for the day were chanted. The attendance at holy Communion was most gratifying. On New Year’s eve the Crumlin Sunday School, to the number of 84, over which Mr. English acts as superintendent, had its annual soiree in the Laurelvale School. After tea and cake, the prizes for attendance and good answering were distributed by Rev. A. Pakenham, of Langford Lodge, whose presence and kind words gave pleasure to all. After some carols were sung, and a few words were spoken to the children, apples were distributed, and a most enjoyable evening ended at nine o’clock. On Friday, 4th, the Feumore Sunday School, numbering over 60, had its yearly treat in a barn kindly lent by Mr W. Fitzgerald for the occasion. After tea, games were for a time enjoyed, and some songs sung by Mrs. and the Masters Sides were highly appreciated by the children. The prizes were distributed by Mrs. Watson, the Glebe, and oranges handed round before the children separated. On Tuesday last, the Glenavy School, numbering 119, met in the schoolroom for tea and buns, after which they all adjourned to the Protestant Hall, where Canon Sayers delighted them with an exhibition of views of his magic lantern. It was found 50 per cent of the children had earned prizes by their attendances, and these, with the prizes for good answering, were distributed by Mrs. Watson. A few kind words were spoken to the children by the vicar and curate, and after a distribution of oranges, all went home pleased. A large congregation assembled in the parish church on the last Sunday evening of the year, when the service was shortened, the psalms chanted, and carols sung, after an address by Rev. J.R. Sides.

Annual Vestry, 1889

The following is an extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday May 4th 1889.

Parish of Glenavy

The annual Vestry of Glenavy Parish was held on Easter Monday at six o’clock p.m. There was a large attendance, especially of young men, and much interest was shown in the proceedings. The rev. J.R. Sides, B.A., curate was present, and after prayer and reading a portion of Scripture, the vicar presented the report, which showed a good balance in hand, and was adopted. It was unanimously agreed that a heating apparatus should be inserted in the church before the winter, and a committee was appointed for the purpose. Some improvements in the graveyard were proposed, and it was agreed that they should be carried out during the summer. The following elections were made:-

Churchwardens – Messrs J. Lorimer and J. Smyth. Select Vestry – Messrs A. Mussen, M.D.; W. Fitzgerald, W. Bullick, W. Gresham, J.G. Oakman, J. Wickliffe, W. Wheeler, R. Jebb, T. Sloane, J. Corken, and H. Balance. Sidesmen – Messrs. H. Higginson, George Rollins, and James Ingram. Hearty votes of thanks were given to the outgoing churchwardens, Dr. Mussen and Mr. W. Bullick, and also to Mr. J. English, the honorary secretary of the Select Vestry.

Glenavy Fete

Extract from The Lisburn Standard, Saturday, July 27th 1889.

Annual Fete of Glenavy Sunday-Schools

The annual fete in connection with the Sunday-schools of this parish was held on Wednesday last. The children of Crumlin (under Mr. Edward Johnston) arrived on conveyance and joined the Glenavy children at the school. All with their teachers, marched to the parish church at half-past twelve, where a special service of thanksgiving for the mercies of the past year was held. After service, a procession was formed, and, with flags flying, and headed by Glenavy Brass Band, they marched to the glebe lawn. Buns and milk were handed round, and the children then dispersed to their amusements. Swings, kite-flying, running races and jumping for prizes, football, and sending up balloons made the time pass very happily. Dr. Mussen, Mr. A. Mussen, Mr. Lorimer, and the teachers, with the Rev. J.R. Sides, curate keeping the merriment in full swing. At four 0’clock, by which time a large number of parishioners and friends had joined the children on the lawn, tea was served and partaken of gladly. Amusements were again commenced and kept up till seven 0’clock, The children having been called together, the vicar took occasion to ask the children to express their sympathy with the sufferers by the sad disaster at Armagh. A collection was made on behalf of the sufferers, and the large sun of £5 1s was contributed as a mark of sympathy. Cheers having been given for the band and for all who had so kindly assisted in making the day pleasant, the children marched back to Glenavy Bridge, headed by the band, where, after singing "God Save the Queen." all separated to their homes happy and contented.

Annual Vestry, 1890

The following is an extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday, April 12, 1890

Parish of Glenavy

The annual vestry was held in the schoolroom on Easter Monday, at six o’clock. After the reading of a portion of scripture and prayer by the vicar (Rev. Charles Watson), the honorary secretary (Mr. J. English) read the minutes of last Easter vestry, which were signed. The report was presented, from which it appeared that the general account shows a balance in hand of £241 9s 6d; that the sun of £21 14s 2d had been expended on improving the graveyard; and that £80 9s 7d had been spent on providing a small-bore heating apparatus, erected by Messrs. Musgrave & Co. Some discussion took place over a plan sent in by Mr. J.J. Phillips, architect, which had been approved by the Lord Bishop, for adding a chancel robing-room, and organ- chamber to the parish church, but no decision was arrived at, the estimates not having been fully made out. The following appointments were made :- Churchwardens – Messrs J. English and J. G. Oakman. Select Vestry – The……… (missing)

Glenavy Parish Church 1891

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 11th April, 1891

The annual vestry of the Parish of Glenavy was held in the Parochial Schoolroom on Easter Monday evening. There was a very large attendance at six o’clock, when the vicar, the Rev. Charles Watson, took the chair, and opened the proceedings by reading a portion of Scripture and by prayer. After the minutes of last Easter Vestry were read and confirmed, the chairman referred to the report of the select vestry for the year, from which it appeared that the Sustentation Fund showed a balance to credit of £8 0s 1d, and the Church Expenses Fund of £30 13s. During the year, £26 0s 11d was contributed to the Protestant Orphan Society, and £28 5s 8d for missions. Contributions have also been sent in to the Diocesan Religious Education Society, the Clergy Superannuation Fund, and Local Diocesan Society. The following elections were made:- Churchwardens – Messrs. J. English and J.G. Oakman. Sidesmen – Messrs. Ed. Ingram, C. Quigley, and James Bolton. Select vestry – Dr. Mussen, Messrs W. Fitzgerald, Edward Johnston, W. Mountgarrett, J. Lorimer, J. Smyth, W. Gresham, J. Corken, W. Bullick, J. Wickliffe, J. Coburn, and T. Sloan. Parochial nominators – Captain Geo. Douglass, J.P., A. Mussen, M.D., and W. Fitzgerald. Diocesan synods men – Messrs. J. Lorimer, W. Fitzgerald, W. Mountgarrett, and Henry Barnes. Mr Fitzgerald proposed, and Dr. Mussen seconded a vote of thanks to Mr. J. English for his services as honorary secretary, and it was unanimously agreed that he should continue to give his valuable help.

[1] Select Vestry

The Church of Ireland – within each Parish – have elections each year to elect representatives who are like a board of guardians – making decisions on church matters.

From the book "Second edition. Aid to The Book of Common Prayer – Its Origin and History and other information concerning the services of the Church" by Richard A. Rogers — the definition is given of "Vestry" as "A room for ‘vesting’ in; a body of men selected from the parishioners."

A right of way case made headlines in 1891. The judgement in the case eventually favoured the Parish Church. The use of the right away and the stepping stone across the river to access the Parish Church by parishioner is still in living memory.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 16th May, 1891


Mountgarrett v. Dornan

This was an action brought by Warren mount Garrett, Crumlin, land agent, against Edward Dornan, Ballycessy, Glenavy, farmer, to recover the sum of £5, loss and damage sustained by plaintiff by reason of the defendant, having interrupted and obstructed the plaintiff in the exercise of a certain public right of way, exercised and used by him, in common with others, ever a certain road or portion of ground leading from the road or highway from the parish of Camlin to the Parish Church of Glenavy, in the town land of Ballycessy, parishes of Camlin and Glenavy, barony of Upper Masserene, and County of Antrim.
Mr. Wellington Young appeared for the plaintiff, and Mr. Harrison, B.L. (instructed by Mr. P. Johnston), for the defendant.
When the case was called on, Mr. Harrison stated that the action was one involving a question as to a right of way, with regard to which the parish was practically divided into two portions, the one claiming that there was a right of way, and the other the reverse. The case would certainly occupy all day, the witnesses numbering at least twenty-two, and, in addition, there were a number of very debateable law points to be contested. Counsel had only got his instructions in this very elaborate case a few minutes ago, the delay being due neither to him not to the solicitor for the defendant, and he therefore applied to have the case adjourned to a day when they would be in a position to fully meet the case. Mr. Young opposed the application most strenuously. The process had been issued on the 13th April, and served on the defendant on the following day, so that there could be no excuse for the delay that had occurred in the instruction of counsel. As a matter of fact, the case was a very simple one, and didn’t require the assistance of counsel. As far as he (Mr. Young) was concerned, he could assure his Honour that, although there were fifteen or twenty witnesses summoned, he did not intend to examine more than one or two. The question involved was whether a certain right of way existed to the Parish Church of Glenavy, and they had to bring the former rector, Rev. E.J. Smith, from Dublin. That gentleman was certainly not very strong, and it would be a hardship to compel his return to court.

His Honour said he could do no more than allow the case to stand to the end of the day’s list, and he made an order accordingly.

Shortly before four o’clock the case came up on the evidence.

Rev. E.J. Smith, of Dublin, deposed that he had been vicar of Glenavy from 1852 till 1885, and during that time the path in question had been frequently used by himself, and he had seen other people use it. There had never been any let or hindrance to any person passing along the way. The path ran from the road to the Glenavy river, and was continued on the other side of the river to the parish church.

In reply to Mr. Harrison, the witness stated that he would not be surprised to hear that a gate had been put on the path in 1880.

Ann Allen stated she recollected the path had been open for fifty years. A few years ago the defendant had put up a gate. The way had been made use of by the villagers for the purpose of procuring water from the river and as a short way to the church. No lock was put on the gate till last July. Before that, and subsequent to the gate being erected, people continued to make use of the pathway. John Bullock had never known of any person being prevented making use of the roadway. People had been in the habit of carting gravel from the river by this path.

Joseph English, hon. Secretary of the Select vestry of the church, stated that every effort had been made by the Select Vestry of the Parish of Glenavy to amicably settle this question. They had desired that the defendant should not lock the gate, but he declined to come to any agreement. Witness saw the gate newly tarred on almost every Sunday, evidently for the purpose of preventing persons going by that way to the parish church.

The plaintiff stated that he had broken down the obstructions to the use of the path in question, and had invited an action against himself to have the matter decided whether it was a public right of way or not. He had done so for the purpose of asserting his rights.

Mr. Harrison reserved his cross-examination of the witness, and the case stands till Wednesday.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday May 23rd, 1891

The Glenavy Right of Way Case
Mountgarrett v. Dornan
Judgement for the defendant

The hearing of this case was resumed. It was an action brought by Warren Mountgarrett, Crumlin, land agent, against Edward Dornan, Ballycessy, Glenavy, farmer, for the recovery of £5 for lass and damage sustained by plaintiff by reason of the defendant having interrupted and obstructed the plaintiff in the exercise and enjoyment of a certain public right of way exercised and used by him in common with others, over a certain road or highway from the parish of Camlin to the Parish Church of Glenavy, in the town land of Ballycessy, parishes of Camlin and Glenavy, barony of Upper Massereene, and County of Antrim.

Mr. Wellington Young represented the plaintiff, and Mr. Thomas Harrison (instructed by Mr. Phillip H. Johnston, LL.D.), appeared for the defendant.

John Jamison, examined, stated, in reply to Mr. Harrison, that he lived in the parish of Glenavy. He knew the place referred to for upwards of 20 years. He had been a long time in the employment of the Rev. Mr. Smith, late vicar of Glenavy. He had seen people pass down the path referred to, and by means of the stepping stones cross over the river. The present gateway was not the usual entrance to the path in question. Bt the Rev. Mr. Smith’s directions he had maintained a paling to prevent people crossing over the river.

By Mr. Young – He recollected the existence of the pathway on the other side of the river for a number of years.

Robert Dickson, a member of the congregation of Glenavy Parish Church, said that the last vicar, the Rev. Mr. Smith, had prevented people crossing over the river. About two years ago he had been cautioned by the defendant for making use of the path. He had never heard it spoken of as a public right of way. Persons who bought material from Dornan made use of the river.

By Mr. Young – He had tarred the gate for Dornan. He had never performed the operation at night. He had tarred the gate after he made it and put it up. He had never tarred the wall to prevent people going to church. He had carted gravel several times from the river.

By Mr. Harrison – The stones and gravel which he had carted from the river had been purchased by the Grand Jury from the defendant.

James Ferris remembered the pathway for between fifty and sixty years. He never knew of the right of everybody to make use of the road.

By Mr. Young – During the time he recollected the path was an open way, not paved, he believed, extending to Dornan’s field.

Richard McCall had been cautioned by the defendant inside this four years against use of the pathway.

By Mr. Young – The position of the stepping-stones in the river had never been altered. A new path had lately been constructed by the church authorities on the parish church side of the river. He had been cautioned twelve years ago by the defendant for watering his cattle at the river by means of this path.

James Johnston swore that he was a linen merchant in Belfast. He formerly had property at Glenavy, and his acquaintance with the locality in question extended for between fifty and sixty years. His father had owned portion of Dornan’s property. There had been a gate on the old entrance to the path in dispute. In his time this path was merely a cart track. He had never heard anyone claiming a right of way until about four years ago. He knew of thorns being put upon the path to prevent I being used as a common right of way. There was another way to the river, which was kept up by the people.

By Mr. Young – He had suggested to the defendant to compromise the matter with the church authorities, and sell their right of way. He had resided at Glenavy until November, occasionally visiting Belfast. He had not encouraged the defendant to enter into law. He had no interest one way or the other in these proceedings. He would be very willing to subscribe towards the construction of a proper pathway to the church, and if the present church authorities were honest they could have one through their own land.

This was all the evidence produced for the defence.

Rev. Charles Watson, called on behalf of the plaintiff, said that he had been incumbent of Glenavy for the past six years, succeeding the late Rev. E.J. Smith. When he was appointed to the place the gate, which had been broken down, was upon the path referred to. It was fastened by a piece of string. The pathway was continued on the other side of the river, through the graveyard, and over some of the graves. To prevent this, he allowed a new path to be made through this meadow. This was the only alteration which had been made. There had been no deviation of the other pathway over Dornan’s grounds.
By Mr. Harrison – He had frequently used the pathway when going to the church.

Mr. Young called his Honour’s attention to the Ordnance Survey of 1862, on which, he said, the way was marked.

Mr. Harrison then asked his Honour to dismiss the action on the following grounds:- First that, the defendant was not the person to sue, because he had received no special damage of quantity or quality. On this point the quoted a number of cases in which it had been held that a person could not take action for obstruction received on a public right of way unless there had been certain particular damage done to himself over and above that which might be occasioned to all the Queen’s subjects, otherwise there would be a multiplicity of actions. Secondly, that there had been no evidence whatever given of the path having been dedicated as a public right of way by some person who had power to do so; and thirdly, that evidence of the maps which had been handed in were dead against any such contention.

Mr. Young said no matter how the case went, he thought there would be only one opinion in regard to the conduct of the defendant in attempting to prevent those people from worshipping in the Parish Church, and the methods he adopted to effect his purpose could not be upheld in any court of justice. The idea of a man tarring a gate to prevent his neighbours going to their place of worship. He quite agreed with Mr. Harrison’s contention that the plaintiff would have to prove special damage before he could bring an action for obstruction in regard to a public right of way; but had not proved special damage, had not his clothes been injured by the tar on the gate upon attempting to enter on the pathway? The word "public" no doubt occurred in the process, but if his Honour were satisfied that a right of way existed, he cared not whether it was public or not vested in the public or section of the community, his Honour had power to strike the word out of the process and give a decree for the exercise of the right of way. Then, for considering that pathway as an easement, his Honour had substantial grounds by holding that the church, with the graveyard in this case, was the dominant tenement. Under all the circumstances, he asked the Court to prevent the defendant precluding the parishioners going to their church as they had been accustomed to do for the last fifty years.

His Honour, having reviewed the evidence, said that it was quite evident from the facts proved in the case that the defendant had no right whatever to stop these people making use of this way to the Parish Church. It had been made use of for this purpose for the last fifty or sixty years, and the parishioners could still exercise that right. According to the law bearing on the matter, the right claimed by the plaintiff here was an easement, but the process hand not been brought to establish this, but a public right of way. Admitting this, one of the questions raised by counsel came under consideration. The way he had mentioned did exist, only as a private right of way and, as an easement, but that action was instituted to establish the right of a public road, which could only exist by Act of Parliament or by dedication by the owner of the soil. Dedication could not only take place by a person having a limited interest, but no doubt long user of the soil, the owner in fee. If the way has been permitted to be used for a long time, the law assumed his assent. In his opinion the evidence produced was opposed to any public right of way. The very fact that the defendant had been permitted to put a gate on ten years ago was quite inconsistent with the contention that that was a public right of way. Assuming, however, that it was such, the plaintiff was then confronted by the other question which Mr. Harrison had raised and established very clearly, that no private individual could bring an action for obstruction to public highway unless he could show some special damage resulting to himself from the obstruction. The case in the Second Exchequer Division alluded to established the fact that it was not sufficient to sustain inconvenience such as any other person might suffer to sustain the right of action. Well, it was affirmed that the plaintiff in that case had sustained some special damage by the tarring of his clothes when going over this gate. But any other person could have created such damage by acting in a similar manner, and, consequently, the damage could not be described as special and particular. Furthermore, special damage must be averred in the pleadings. Where was there ant averment in the process before the Court, and the plaintiff had no right to give any evidence of such? On this second count also he held that the action was sustainable. It would not be right on his part to alter or vary the process in the away asked by Mr. Young. The action had been fought out on the assumption of the case stated in the process, and he should not amend it. What occurred to him, however, as to the rights of the parties was this, and he made this statement, that the defendant might know if he constructed this way, and the case came before his Honour again, what the result would be. The defendant was bound, in his opinion, to allow the passage to exist, and if he did not do so, and action were taken against him (his Honour) to leave it open, and the coasts of such a proceeding, having regard to that case before the Court, would justly and entirely fall upon him. As far as his Honour’s opinion went, the defendant ought to allow these people to pass as they had done for the last fifty or sixty years, and he was sure they would not interfere with his property. He would dismiss the case without prejudice, but he would allow no expenses in consequence of the way the defendant had acted in suddenly obstructing this way.

On the application of Mr. Harrison, His Honour, however, 10s towards a map of the locality produced on behalf of the defendant.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 18th July, 1891


In the Record Court, Belfast, on Thursday, before Mr. Justice Murphy, the following cases were heard.

Dornan, appellant

In this case the appeal was brought by Edward Dornan from a decision of the County Court Judge, sitting at Belfast, on the 18th June last, giving a decree for 1s, in an action for loss and damage sustained by the plaintiff, Anne Allen, by reason of the defendant having within six months interrupted and obstructed the plaintiff in the exercise and used by her over a certain road or portion of ground leading from the road or highway from near the National School, in the townland of Ballycessy, in the parish of Crumlin, to the Glenavy River, and also to the Parish of Glenavy. Mr Thomas Harrison (instructed by Mr. Phillip Johnston) appeared for the appellant, and Mr A.H. Bates (instructed by Mr Wellington Young) represented by the respondent. At the close of the evidence His Lordship said that he had not the slightest hesitation in affirming the decree, and characterised the action of the appellant as a wild attempt at stopping a very ancient right of way. The decree was affirmed with costs, and £4 witnesses’ expenses.

Annual Harvest Festival Service, 1891

The following extract if from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday November 7th, 1891.

Glenavy Parish – The annual harvest festival service was held on Friday evening last in the parish church. The church had been chastely decorated by Mrs. Watson, Mrs. And Miss Mussen, Miss English, Miss Newell, ad the Misses Lorimer. There was a large congregation present, who seemed to join heartily in the service. The preacher on the occasion was Rev. R.A. Kernan B.D., rector of Hillsborough, who, from the words of King David, "For all things come from thee, and of Thine own we have given Thee," preached an interesting sermon, at the conclusion of which he pleaded earnestly for a hearty offering towards the Glenavy Missionary Association.

Rev Cushing’s Mission

The following is an extract from The Lisburn Standard – 4th June,1892.

The Church of Ireland

Glenavy Parish – Diocese of Connor – The Rev. J.P. Cushing, of the Church Parochial Mission, has just concluded a most interesting sixteen days’ mission in this parish. Preparation had been going on for weeks beforehand, the parish, which is very large, having been divided in 25 districts, each of which had been placed in charge of a mission helper. Three series of notices and tracts were delivered at the houses by these district visitors, the most valued of all being a pastoral letter to the parishioners from the Lord Bishop of the diocese. The mission opened with a service in the parish church on Saturday evening, April 30, when the missioner was welcomed by the clergy and district visitors. In the parish there are three places of worship – viz, the parish church, in Glenavy; Feumore Church, distant over four miles; and Crumlin, distant two miles. During the first week the mission was conducted in Feumore and Crumlin alternately, both places being filled nightly with earnest and attentive congregations. The singing of the mission hymns was must inspiriting, the people in Crumlin especially seeming to have caught something of the missioner’s zeal and devotion. During the second week the mission was confined to the parish church, the services beginning with an early celebration on Sunday, the 8th, at eight o’clock. Afternoon meetings were held at three o’clock during this week for instruction on the Christian life, and the results of these were most gratifying. Powerful and eloquent as the preacher was in his stirring mission addresses in the evening, his afternoon instructions were specially fruitful in deepening the spiritual life of many. No service was more interesting than that for men on the afternoon of Sunday, the 15th. The nave of the church was packed with men, and it was grand to hear them thunder forth the hymn, "Quit you like men." Those present will not soon forget the preacher’s impassioned appeals o the men to keep their baptismal vows. The largest congregation was that of Sunday evening, the 15th, no less than 500 hymn-books being in use. On that evening the psalms were chanted, and the evening prayer recited on G. The children were not forgotten, as special services were held for their benefit. The mission was brought to a close by a thanksgiving service on Monday, the 16th. At the conclusion, the missioner very gracefully thanked those who had helped him in his work – the church officers, the organists, the sextons, and all the voluntary helpers. The collection on the last Sunday for the mission society amounted to £17 19s, the other collections being, for local expenses £6 6s, and for the purchase of hymns and liturgies for country meetings £2 16s 6d, making a total of £27 1s 6d. During the mission the neighbouring clergy showed their sympathy with the work, there being present from time to time the Revs. Canon Sayers, Canon Hayes, T.H. Abrahall, T.W. Harpur, M.F. Collis, A.J. Moore, T.H. McKnight, J. Clarke, O. Scott, T.W. Minchin, J. Archer, G.N. Beere. The clergy of the parish, the Revs. C. Watson and C.F. Newell, are grateful to the missioner for the help he has given.

Glenavy Parish Church 1892

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 19th November, 1892


Few parishes in the North have such an interesting history attached to them as that of Glenavy. The parish of Glenavy, formerly, Lynavy, is a union of three parishes – Glenavy, Camlin, and Tullyrusk. It contains 33 town lands, covering 17,890 acres. Shaped like a crescent, it exceeds twelve miles in length and four and a half in breadth. Its western side is bounded entirely by Lough Neagh, the only island of which (Ram’s Island) belongs to the parish. Prior to the dissolution of the monasteries the rectory of Glenavy belonged to the great Abbey of Bangor, County Down. After the dissolution it was granted to Sir James Hamilton in the patent giving him Killultagh, and so became a vicarage. The old church of Glenavy had neither tower or spire. It was 58 feet long by 20 feet wide, with a small gallery, and had sittings for 300. Its porch bore the date 1644, and it escaped the ravage of the army of James 11., owing to its being hidden by the deep forest which then covered the country. Mr. Lavens Ewart states that an interesting relic of those days still remains in the silver chalice which the officers of a detachment of Duke of Schomberg’s army presented to the church in consideration of the kindness shown to them when quartered in Glenavy. It is 12 inches high and 4 3/8 broad with a lid attached which serves as a paten. It bears the inscription –

"This plate was given to ye church of Glenavy by ye officers of ye Queen’s Regiment of Horse, commanded by ye Queen’s Regiment of Horse, commanded by ye Honble. Major-General Sir John Lanier, in the year 1690. In honorem Ecclesiae Anglicanae."

The present rector of Glenavy, the Rev. Chas. Watson B.D., is endeavouring to raise funds for erecting a chancel at Feumore Chapel of Ease, which is situated on Lough Neagh, and is largely used by the fishermen. A Christmas sale of work is to be held, and to be sold at it Mr Watson has compiled a history of the parish of Glenavy from the time of its being chosen as a site by St. Patrick. The portion giving the ancient history was revised by the late Bishop Reeves, and the book will be illustrated, giving, among other views a photo of the Communion plate presented by the regiment of Duke Schomberg’s army.

From The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 10th December, 1892


An advertisement elsewhere inserted announces that a bazaar, in aid of the funds for the erection of a chancel at Feumore Church, will be held in the Protestant Hall, Glenavy, on Thursday and Friday next. The bazaar is to be opened on the former day by the Rev. A.H. Pakenham J.P., of Langford Lodge; and on Friday by Alderman W.J. Johnston, J.P. of Belfast. The ladies of the parish have put forth hearty efforts to make the undertaking a success, and we hope that the highest anticipations of the clergy and laity may be fully realised. The bazaar is in aid of a worthy object. We are pleased to be in a position to announce that the manager of the Great Northern Railway has arranged that return tickets at single fares will be issued to Glenavy on the 15th and 16th by 9 a.m., 12.30, and 4.15p.m. trains from Belfast and intermediate stations; and from Antrim and intermediate stations by 12.40 and 3.30 p.m. trains, and tickets being available for the following day.


Glenavy Parish
A Bazaar
Will be held in the

Protestant Hall, Glenavy,
On Thursday and Friday,
December 15 and 16
In aid of the funds for the

Erection of a Chancel at Feumore Church.
The Bazaar will be opened on Thursday, the
15th, by the Rev. A.H. Pakenham,J.P., of
Langford Lodge, at 1.30p.m., by Alderman W J Johnston, J.P.,
Of Belfast
Admission, 1s; Children, sixpence.

"The Old Parish Church"

The following poem can be found on page 63, "Glenavy: Past and present" compiled by Charles Watson, 1892.

The Old Parish Church,

The old, old Church, the Parish Church,
What changes it hath known
Standing here in its burial ground,
So solemnly alone,
And preaching, like some elder grey,
Out of its walls and stone.

Many the praises it hath heard,
Prayers breathed and sins confest;
Many the head it hath beheld
Bow in Communion blest;
And many and many a burdened heart
Hath come to it for rest!

The Gentle Spirit at its font
Hath oft and oft been shed,
And Love and Truth a blessing won
At its old altar wed;
And to the Parish Church-yard green
Each home hath sent its dead.

Here men of god have stood to preach,
And told the Love that saves;
While the hushed noontide slept without,
Upon the quiet graves,
A soft breeze whisp’ring from the trees
Over the river’s waves.

Thro’ fourteen centuries oft restored,
Rare link to days of yore,
The old church, standing on a hallowed spot.
Throws wide its sheltering door,
And bids its bell proclaim "not yet
The day of grace is o’er."

God bless thee, old St. Aidan’s church,
Upreared with reverent hand
Church of our fathers, ever dear,
God keep thee long to stand,
Type of our "goodly heritage,"
A bulwark of the land.

Glenavy Parish Church 1894

We read an important extract from one of the local papers. It contains a comprehensive description of the interior of the Parish Church. The interior of the church was later to be destroyed by fire in December 1938.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 20th October 1894


On the 12th inst. In the afternoon an interesting service was held in the picturesquely-situated church of St. Aidan’s, Glenavy, in connection with the consecration of the recently-erected chancel. The church is not only an interesting one from the picturesque ness of its surroundings, but also from its historical associations. It is only a very short time since the vicar of the parish published in booklet form an account of the history of the church, embellished with numerous illustrations, and to which was added a list of the clergymen who had acted as vicars of the parish from the earliest days to the present time. This little booklet attracted a good deal of interest at the time, and, no doubt, its circulation materially assisted in promoting the success of the movement for the erection of the chancel. In its original form the church consisted of a nave and tower, substantially, but plainly, built of stone. To this was subsequently added a transept of nearly equal size to the original structure, and now the addition of the chancel makes the church one of the most complete of the smaller country churches of the diocese, over which the Rev. Dr. Welland has presided since the lamented death of Rev. Dr. Reeves. For a number of years there has been increasingly felt the urgent necessity for the erection of a proper chancel to this church, as well as for the reconstruction in a satisfactory way of its choir arrangements. For want of sufficient funds, these and other much-needed improvements have been postponed, until recently the Select Vestry resolved, by a great effort, to render this quaint and interesting church more worthy for the Divine worship. In this work they were encouraged by the liberal contributions of the parishioners and other friends, and aided by grants from the Marshal Beresford Fund and the Society for the Promotion of Christian Knowledge, London. The new chancel, in design and in regard to the material of which it has been constructed, is in conformity with the general design of the church. The vicar and the parishioners are to be congratulated on the fact that the work which they have had in hand for some considerable time has now been brought to such a successful issue. The chancel, which is 20 feet deep by 18 feet wide, is built in closely-jointed ashlars masonry, with cut-stone dressings, chiefly in white Gifnock rock. The chancel arch is very beautifully proportioned and richly moulded, with corbel clusters at the springing of the labels. The ceiling is panelled in white wood and moulded with pitchpine. The stonework of the original east window has been reset; it has handsome tracery, and has been glazed with chaste design of cathedral-leaded light. The wall panelling over the holy-table has been inlaid with gold mosaics of chaste design. The walls of the chancel have been panelled and arcaded in pitchpine. The steps of the sanctuary are white marble, and the entire area of the chancel has been laid with special tiles of mediaeval design, reproduced from ancient examples. The choir seats and reading desk and sedilium have been executed in hand wrought pitchpine. A capacious organ chamber organ has been built, with large arch opening into the chancel and an arched opening into the church. The organ, which till now was fixed out of sight and proper hearing up in the end gallery of the nave, has been added to, improved, and refixed in the organ chamber. The robing-room is separated by a handsome arcaded screen. The front of the chancel has been projected for a few feet into the body of the church, and enclosed with moulded cut stone plinth. The towering old wooden pulpit has been reconstructed and refixed in suitable position. The east window, which was put up in memory of Mrs. English and three children, consists of four lights, filled in with passion flowers, grapes, pomegranate, rose of Sharon, and Alpha and Omega in the top-lights. The south window has an Irish cross on the top and two side lights filled with roses of Sharon, and contains the words “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.” It was erected in memory of Mrs Esther Wallace. In the south window there is a monogram, called the Labarum, at the top, with lilies on the two lights, and the words, "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God." It was erected in memory of Arthur Gayer Finlay, B.A. The font is of Caen Stone. Its base is octagonal and moulded, on which rests a Derbyshire alabaster column highly polished, with capital richly carved in the early English style. The bowl is an octagon, with four carved panels, with foliage, and there is on the chamfer the text, "Suffer little children to come unto Me." – Mark x., 13. The various works have been executed in a very creditable manner by Mr Thomas Irvine, builder, of Glenavy, from the designs and under the superintendence of Mr. J.J. Phillips, architect, of 61 Royal Avenue, Belfast. The whole work was carried out under the general superintendence of Rev. Chas. Watson, B.D., vicar; Rev. F.G. Nelson, Curate, and the following building committee:- Dr. Mussen, J.P.; Messrs. W. Fitzgerald, J.P.; J.English, and J.Lorimer. The following summary of the history of the parish and the improvements carried out during the present year will be found of interest:- Glenavy has been pronounced so only since 1661 A.D. Prior to that its name was Lannavy, from Lian, the church of the dwarf. This title it received from Daniel, to whom St. Patrick gave the cure, and who was called Nanus Angelus, the Angelic dwarf. The church was dedicated to St. Aidan, as we learn from the martyrology of Donegal, at the day, November 6. After the dissolution of the monasteries it was given to Sir James Hamilton, from whom it passed to Sir Fluke Conway, who appointed as vicar the Rev. Meredith Gwyllim in 1622. The parish is now a union of three – Glenavy, Camlin, and Tullyrusk, the union taking place about 1633. It contains thirty-three town lands, covering 17,890 acres, with a Church of Ireland population numbering 1,172, and embraces Ram Island in Lough Neagh with its round tower. The church existed in the sixth century, since the three daughters of Comgall were buried there, according to the calendar of Aengus the Culdee,A.D.788. The next mention of it is in the year 1306, when the entry in the Crusade Tax runs:- "The Church of Llennevy with chapel, 10s." Not till 1622, when Gwyllim was vicar, do we find any record, and then in 1644 it is stated a new church was built, in which worshipped a detachment of the Duke of Schomberg’s army, who were quartered in Glenavy, and left, as a memorial of their stay, a silver chalice and platen suitably inscribed, and bearing date 1690. In 1812 the Rev. Edward Cupples built the present church, which was extensively repaired by the Rev. E. Johnston-Smyth, who also added a transept in 1863. During the last nine years many improvements have been made, an organ purchased, a hot-water apparatus inserted, a lynch gate erected, a residence for the curate bought, and the Chapel of Ease at Feumore renovated, and a chancel added. The improvements carried out in the parish church this year included a chancel, with organ chamber, vestry, choir stalls, baptistery, and cathedral glass windows. The chaucel is paved with old English tiling, the gift of Captain Douglass, J.P., and supplied by Messrs. Craven, Dunnill, & Co., of Jackfield, Salop. The other gifts include a memorial brass lectern, presented by Mrs Alsager Nixon; a memorial east window, by Mr Joseph English; a memorial south window, by Dr Black; a memorial south window, by the wife and sisters of the late A.G. Finlay; mosaic communion panels, by the late Frances Morrow; a holy table, by Mr. J. English; an altar cloth, by the Misses Eileen, Olive, and Dorothy Masaroon; a pulpit frontal, by ladies of the parish; chancel lamp, by Late W.E. Colburn; lectern Bible, by the Rev. E Johnson-Smyth; brass altar desks, by Revs. Dr. Irvine and Dr. Munce; Prayer-book for desk, by Rev. J.R. Sides; communion service books, by Rev. C.W. Harding; book markers, by Rev. C.F. Newell; hymn-book, by Rev. W. Moore; alms dishes, by the Rev. F.G. Nelson and a lady of the congregation. Towards the total expenditure, which amounts to over £435, a sum of £55 was obtained from the Marshal Beresford Fund, and £20 from the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge. The windows were furnished by Messrs. Duff and Spagnoletti of London, and the font by Mr Costigan, of Belfast.

The time announced for the consecration service was two p.m., and as this was a convenient hour there was a large attendance of clergymen and laymen not only from the district, but also from Belfast and Lisburn. On the arrival of the 12.30 p.m. train from Belfast the visiting clergy and friends were entertained to luncheon by the parishioners in the Protestant Hall. Among the clergy present were – Right Rev. T.J. Welland, D.D., Bishop of Down and Connor and Dromore; Revs. Dr. Seaver, Dean of Connor; Dr Chadwick, Dean of Armagh; Canon Sayers, Canon Fitzgerald, Canon Pounden, Lisburn; Archdeacon Smythe, R. A. Kernan, B.D.; Charles Watson, B.D., vicar of the parish; Dr. Irvine,St.Stephen’s; F.G. Nelson, G.P. Mitchell, A.R. Ryder, H. McKnight, John Leslie, James Leslie, Thomas Dowzer, Broughshane; John Clarke, Killead; G.O. Woodward, T. Mills, T.J. McEndoo, F.J. Newell, James Reade, Jordanstown; M. Collins, Antrim: B. Banks, Lambeg; W.J. Minchin, Ballinderry; J.Greer, Dundela; G.H. Daunt, Grange; B. Tisdall, Ballinderry; Thomas Mills, Dublin; T. McCreight, St. Matthew’s; T.W. Harper, A.P.F. Hains, J.E. Archer,B.D. ; and C Johnston. The clergy robed in the Sabbath schoolroom, and walked in procession to the church. At the door of the sacred edifice the Bishop was received by the Rev. Charles Watson and the churchwardens of the parish. A petition was presented to his Lordship, asking him to consecrate the new church. The procession of clergy then proceeded up the nave, saying as they went the 24th psalm, "The earth is the Lord’s, and all therein is." On reaching the Communion table, the Bishop read the usual consecration prayers, after which his lordship having been conducted to his chair in the chancel, the deed of consecration was read by the registrar of the diocese, Mr David Morrow. A shortened form of evening service was then said by Rev. C.Watson, B.D., vicar. The Proper Psalms were the 84th, the 122nd, and the 132nd. These were sung to J. Jones and Dr. W. Hayes. The first lesson was 1st Kings, viii., verses 20 to 40, and was read by Rev. Archdeacon Smythe, and Rev. Dr. Irvine, St. Stephen’s, read the second lesson, which was Hebrews xv. Chapter, verses 19 to 26. The Magnificant was sung to Dr. P Hayes, and the Nun Dimittis to Barnby in E flat. the hymn before the sermon was "O God, our help in ages past." The musical portion of the service was admirably rendered by an augmented choir, under the charge of Mr. T. Osbourne Marks, Mus. Doc., organist of Armagh Cathedral.

The preacher was he very Rev. Dr. Chadwick, dean of Armagh, who chose for his text, Zechariah,5th chapter, and 12th verse -"Behold My servant, whose name is the branch, and he shall build up the temple of the Lord." he preached an earnest, practical sermon, dealing with the rise and progress of the Christian religion, and, in conclusion, he said, as they had taken an interest in the erection and beautification of that church, so might they take an interesting the erection of that great temple which was the visible Church of the Lord. He wanted them not only to be supporters of the Church in the ordinary sense, but to become pillars in it, and to be real and true Christians, and built into the Church of the redeemed in the eternal world.

The offertory was taken up, and after the Bishop had pronounced the benediction, the choir sang the hymn, "Jesus, thou hast willed it," as the procession of clergy left the church. Subsequently, the clergy and other visitors were entertained at tea in the Sabbath Schoolroom.

Glenavy Parish Church 1897

Extract from The Lisburn Herald – 24th April, 1897


The Easter Vestry of this parish was held on Easter Monday evening at seven o’clock – the Rev. Charles Watson, B.D., vicar, in the chair, the Rev. R.W.W. Alexander being also present. After prayer and reading a portion of Scripture, the minutes of last Easter Vestry were read and confirmed, and the annual report passed. The chairman having intimated to the Vestry that he had accepted the benefice of Newcastle, the following resolution was proposed by Dr. Mussen, and seconded Mr. Willis, and unanimously passed:- This Vestry wishes to express its deep sense of the loss which this parish has sustained by the resignation of the Rev. Charles Watson, B.D., and, at the same time, desires to put on record its sincere appreciation of the devoted services of Mr. And Mrs. Watson during their ministry of the past twelve years, in grateful recognition of which it was the privilege of the parish last summer to testify to some degree the appreciation here expressed. The Vestry earnestly trusts that abundant blessings may attend them in them their new sphere of labour.

The following were elected as officers of the parish for the ensuing year:- Churchwardens, Dr. Mussen, J.P., and Mr. J. Corken; nominators, Captain Douglass,J.P., Dr. Mussen, J.P., and William Fitzgerald, J.P. ; synods men, W. Fitzgerald, J.P. ; James Lorimer, Andrew Lorimer, Robert Willis, Thomas Sloam, Wm. Gresham, Joseph English, Francis Barnes, Samuel Leslie, Joseph Colburn, and James Smyth. Proposed by Dr. Mussen, seconded by Mr. Briggs, and passed unanimously – "That the best thanks given of the Vestry be given to Mr. English for his untiring efforts as honorary secretary."

Extract from The Lisburn Herald – 22nd May 1897


At an adjourned meeting of the Board of Nomination, held in the Diocesan Rooms, Belfast – the Right Rev. the Lord Bishop presiding – the Rev. John H. Mervyn, M.A., T.C.D., military chaplain, Belfast, and formerly senior curate of the parish church, Belfast, was unanimously nominated to the incumbency of Glenavy, diocese of Connor, in the place of the Rev. Charles Watson, B.D., lately appointed to the incumbency of Newcastle, diocese of Dromore.

Glenavy Parish Church 1899

Extract from The Lisburn Herald – Saturday 15th April, 1899


The annual meeting of the registered vestrymen of this parish was held on the 3rd inst., the Rev. John Mervyn (vicar) in the chair. Also present – Rev. J. L. Sloane, Messrs. A. Mussen, M.D., J.P.; Joseph English, James Lorimer, John Corken, Francis Barnes, James Smith, Henry Ballance, Robert Willis, Trevor Willis, William Fitzgerald, Edward Johnston, Robert Steele. The meeting having opened with prayer, the treasurer presented the annual accounts of the parish, which were considered very satisfactory. The following elections took place – Churchwardens, Mr Henry Ballance (vicar’s), mr Robert Willis (people’s); select vestry, Messrs. A. Mussen M.D., J.P.; John Corken, William Fitzgerald, Edward Johnston, Andrew Lorimer, Samuel Leslie, Francis Barnes, Thomas Sloan, William Gresham, Joseph Colhoun, Joseph English,and James Lorimer; sidesmen, Messrs. Robert Steel, John Ingram, and Thomas A Irvine. Hearty votes of thanks were passed to Mr Joseph English, the secretary of the select vestry, and to the outgoing churchwardens (Dr. Mussen and Mr. John Corken.)

Easter Vestry, 1898

The following extract is from The Lisburn Herald April 23 1898.

Easter Vestries.

The annual meeting of the registered vestrymen of this parish was held on Easter Monday -the vicar (Rev John Mervyn, M.A.) presiding. The meeting having been opened with the reading of Scripture and prayer , the treasurer presented the statement of accounts for last year, which showed a considerable balance on hands. The following elections were made :- Vicar’s Churchwarden Dr Mussen J.P.; people’s churchwarden Mr. John Corken; Select vestry – Messrs Wm Fitzgerald, Edward Johnston, Andrew Lorimer, James Smyth, Samuel Leslie, Francis Barnes, Robert Willis, Thomas Sloan, William Gresham, Joseph Colburn, Joseph English and James Lorimer; sidesmen – Messrs Thompson, McMullen, Robert Steele and Samuel Sloan. The meeting passed a resolution of deep regret at the departure of Rev. R.W.W. Alexander, who has been appointed to the important curacy of Coleraine, and of their appreciation of his faithful work in the parish during the last two years.

Glenavy Parish Church 1900

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 6th January, 1900


The children attending the Sunday Schools in this Parish enjoyed very pleasant evenings on the 1st, 3rd, and 4th January, at the different centres, Crumlin, Glenavy, and Feumore. Tea and a magic lantern exhibition were provided on each occasion, Mr. Scott kindly exhibiting at Crumlin, and the Rev. J. Quinn, of Ballinderry, at Glenavy. The prizes won during the year were distributed to the children, a large number of books were being given out. The following ladies kindly handed the prizes to the children of the different schools:- Mrs. McClintock, Glendarragh, Crumlin; Mr. Boyle-Glover, Vicarage, Glenavy; and Miss Fitzgerald, Feumore. At Crumlin, in addition to the lantern exhibition, there was a short musical programme, in which the following took part:- Miss Prattleton, Rev. J.L. Sloane, Rev. T. Alexander, Mr. Wm. McClintock, and Mr. E. McClintock. At Glenavy short addresses were given by Rev. F.W. Newell and Mr Douglas. The Vicar of the parish, Rev. J.M. Boyle-Glover, took the opportunity on each occasion of thanking the teachers for their attention to the children each Sunday; he desired especially to express his deep sense of gratitude to Mr. English (superintendent of the Crumlin Sunday School) for his unflagging interest in the children. He (the vicar) fully recognised that the great success attending the Sunday School in Crumlin was due, under God, to the constant thought and care Mr English gave to it. Each evening, the weather was fine, the attendance of children and many of their friends was very good.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 27th January 1900


The annual parochial soiree was held in the Protestant Hall, Glenavy, on the 18th inst. – the vicar (Rev. J.M. Boyle-Glover) presiding. The following clergy were also present:- Rev. W.F. Garstin, Rev. B. Banks, and Rev. J.L. Sloane (Curate of the parish). The attendance of parishioners was exceedingly good. Tea was partaken of at 6.30, after which a short address on parochial matters was given by the Vicar, who expressed his great gratification at seeing so many present at the first congressional soiree since his appointment to the parish. The first part of the evening’s programme consisted of the following items:- Pianoforte solo, Mrs Boyle-Glover; song, Mr. Brigs; song, Mr. Barnes; song, Rev. B. Banks; song, Miss Lennon; cornet solo, Mr. Fowler; song, Rev. J.L. Sloane; song, Miss Lennon; reading, Rev. B. Banks; song, Miss Barnes; song, Mr. Briggs; also a very earnest and practical address from the Rev. W.F. Garstin, Rector of St. Luke’s, Belfast. The second part consisted of a cinematograph exhibition when a large number of interesting films were shown by Mr. Hogan (of Messrs. Erskine Mayne, Belfast). A very enjoyable social reunion was brought to a close by the singing of the National Anthem. The following ladies presided at the different tables:- Mrs. Boyle-Glover, Mrs Mussen, Mrs. Graham, Mrs. Ballance, Mrs. Barnes, Mrs. Leslie, Miss. Sloane, Mrs. Willis, Mrs. Johnston, Miss Fitzgerald, Miss English, Miss Coburn, Miss Lorimer, and Miss Corken, assisted by a large number of stewards.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 21st April, 1900


The annual meeting of the registered vestrymen of the parish was held in the schoolroom, Glenavy, on the 16th instant – the vicar, Rev. J.M. Boyle-Glover, M.A., in the chair. There was a very large attendance. Prayers having been said , a portion of Holy Scripture was read by the Rev. J.L. Sloane, B.A., curate assistant. The minutes of the last meeting were read by the honorary secretary, Mr. Joseph English, and confirmed. The Chairman having reviewed the work of the parish, laid the report for the year (which was a very satisfactory one) before the meeting, when it was adopted, and passed unanimously. The elections were then proceeded with, the result being as follows:- Churchwardens – Vicar’s, Mr. Henry Ballance; people’s Mr. Willis. Select Vestry – Messrs. A. Mussen, M.d., J.P.; William Fitzgerald, James Lorimer, Edward Johnston, John Corken, Joseph English, Andrew Lorimer, Samuel Leslie, Francis Barnes, Thomas Sloan, Wm. Gresham, and Joseph Coburn, Sidesmen – Messrs. T. Irvin and J. green. Parochial Nominators – Messrs. A. Mussen, M.D. J.P.; J. Lorimer, and Wm. Fitzgerald. Synods men – Messrs. A. Mussen, M.D.; J. Lorimer, William Fitzgerald, and Francis Barnes. Mr Joseph English, who has been a most efficient honorary secretary to the select vestry for a great number of years, kindly consented to act again. The meeting concluded with the Benediction.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 19th May, 1900


On behalf of the above fund the choir gave a very enjoyable entertainment on the 10th May in the Protestant Hall, Glenavy. A half-hour concert began the evenings proceedings, in which the following took part:- Miss D. Ward, Miss Barnes, Miss Lemon; Rev. T.L. Sloane; Messrs. Briggs and Fowler. The second part was a service of song entitled "Teddy’s Button." The views were exhibited by Mr. T. Scott, of Crumlin, and the various songs rendered by the parish church choir. It was universally admitted that the singing was exceedingly good, showing careful preparation, excellent time being kept. A great deal of the success of the entertainment is due to Mr. Andrews, the efficient organist of the church, who trained the choir in their different parts. The readings in connection with the service of song were given by the vicar, Rev. J.M. Boyle Glover. On the motion of Mr. Jas. Lorimer, a hearty vote of thanks was given to the members of the choir, and also to Mr. Scott for his kindness. The singing of the National Anthem brought a very enjoyable evening to a close.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 30th June 1900


A missionary conference was held in the Protestant Hall, Glenavy on Friday afternoon last in connection with the bi-centenary of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. The chair was taken at three o’clock by the Rev. J. M. Boyle-Glover, M.A., vicar of the parish. The meeting having been opened with a hymn and prayer for missions, a short address was given by the chairman, who afterwards called upon the Rev. Canon Dudley-Janns, B.D., the Rev H.M. Joseph (Antiqua), and the Rev. A.R.Ryder, Drumbeg, to address the meeting. All the speeches were most interesting, and of a nature to stir the hearts of those listening to them to greater efforts for the furtherance of the work of their venerable society. Apologies were received from Rev. R.W.Seaver, B.D., and Rev. W.F. Garston (who were unavoidably prevented from coming to address the meeting). Amongst those present were revs. John Clarke, William Quin, B.Q.Cox and J.L.Sloane. At the close of the meeting tea was kindly provided for those present by ladies of the parish.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 25th August 1900


The annual fete in connection with this parish took place on Saturday last in beautiful weather. At 12.30 the children of the three Sunday Schools (Glenavy, Crumlin and Feumore) assembled in the parish church, when shortened evening prayer was said by the parochial clergy – Rev J.M. Boyle-Glover, M.A., and Rev. J.L. Sloan, B.A. – after which, headed by two excellent bands, they proceeded to the vicarage grounds, where they were joined by their parents and friends. At two o’clock lunch was provided, to which ample justice was done. The children next entered with much zest and enjoyment into the various games provided for their amusement. Numerous races were run, the winners being presented with pretty and useful prizes. At 4.30 a bountiful tea was partaken of by all present, and, as the evening was all that could be desired, a very large number of the parishioners had by this time gathered on the lawn. Towards the close of the evening the vicar gathered round him people, and, in appropriate terms, thanked Mr. And Mrs. Ellison McCartney (who are at present residing at the Vicarage, Glenavy) for their kindness in so hospitably entertaining the children and their friends, and in defraying all expenses in connection with their annual fete. Mr W.E. Macartney, M.P., in replying, expressed the great pleasure it gave both Mrs. Macartney and himself to meet so many of the people, and to contribute to the enjoyment of the children. He concluded by addressing some very kindly words of advice, which were received with the greatest appreciation. It may be mentioned that the popular member (who is always so cordially welcomed in and around Glenavy), with his charming wife, spent the entire afternoon and evening amongst the parishioners, and did everything in their power to make the fete a very great pleasure to one and all.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 27th October 1900


At a meeting of the members of the select vestry of Glenavy Parish, held in the schoolhouse on Tuesday last – the vicar (Rev. J.M. Boyle-Glover, M.A.) presiding – the following resolution was proposed by Dr. A Mussen, J.P.., and seconded by Mr John Corken, and passed unanimously :- "That the select vestry of Glenavy parish desire to offer their sincere and hearty congratulations to their former vicar, the Rev. Charles Watson, B.D. on his well-merited promotion in the church as Archdeacon of Dromore, and trust that he may be long spared to the Church for which he has so earnestly laboured."

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 17th November 1900


On Sunday last, November 11th, special sermons were preached on this church by the Venerable Charles Watson, Archdeacon of Dromore. The offertories on the occasion were devoted to a fund being raised in the parish to defray the cost of stabling recently erected in connection with the church. The offertories were very liberal (including contributions sent by those unable to be present). The amount realised was £41 10s. The Vicar said the prayers, and the lessons at evening service were read by the Rev. F. Alexander and the Rev. J.L. Sloane. The following gentlemen kindly acted as special collectors :- Colonel McClintock, Messers. W.J. Best, T. English, T. Prattleton, and J.G. Oakman.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 8th December 1900


A meeting in connection with the Church missionary Society was held in the Protestant Hall, Glenavy on Monday December 3rd. Notwithstanding the extremely inclement nature of the weather there was a very fair attendance. The meeting was addressed by the Deputation Secretary, Rev. A.J. Pike, and the subject was "Mission Work in Uganda". The lecture was exceedingly interesting, and was illustrated by excellent lantern views. On previous evening a lecture was given in the Fourscore Schoolhouse, Glenavy, by the Rev. B.Q.Cox on "The Chota Nagpur Mission", and it also proved most enjoyable and instructive. At the close of each meeting the vicar (Rev. J. Boyle-Glover) thanked the lecturers for their kindness in coming to Glenavy, and for delivering addresses that could not fail to stir up those hearing them to greater zeal in missionary work.

Glenavy Parish Church, early 1900s

An early 20th century photograph of Glenavy Parish Church

An early 20th century photograph of Glenavy Parish Church

Glenavy Parish Church 1901

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 12th January 1901


The annual congregational re-union in connection with this parish was held on Monday evening, Jan 7th, in the Protestant Hall. The tea-tables were presided over by many of the ladies of the parish, who were assisted by a band of stewards. After tea the vicar took the chair, the following clergy being also present:- Rev. J. Clarke, vicar of Killead; Rev. B. Walker, rector of Maghergall; Rev. F. Newell, vicar of Templepatrick; and Rev. J.L. Sloane, curate assistant of the parish. Rev. W. Quin, of Ballinderry, wrote regretting that a parochial engagement prevented him from being present. The Chairman, in welcoming those present, took the opportunity of returning his sincere thanks to the Rev. J.L. Sloan for the energetic way in which he had assisted him in the work of the parish throughout the year; also to the select vestry, choir, and Sunday school teachers for their help. Very suitable and interesting addresses were also given by Rev. J. Clarke and Rev. R. Walker. A most enjoyable programme was then entered upon, the following taking part:- Mrs Boyle-Glover, Mrs Bertram Carson, Miss Barnes, Miss Armstrong, Miss Louisa Ingram, Rev. J.L. Sloane, Messrs. W. Harty (the talented organist of Hillsborough Parish Church), W. Briggs, J. Magoveny, and the church choir. A warm vote of thanks having been conveyed to the performers, who were all received in a most enthusiastic manner, and deservedly so, a very pleasant evening was brought to a close by singing the National Anthem.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 13th April 1901


The Easter General Vestry meeting of this parish was held on Monday, the Rev. J Boyle Glover, M.A., vicar, presiding, Rev. J.L. Sloane, B.A., curate-assistant, being also present. The meeting having been opened with prayer, the minutes of the last Easter Vestry were read by the honorary secretary, Mr. Joseph English, and passed. The Chairman placed the report of the Select Vestry for the year on the table, and referred to the satisfactory state of the accounts, taking also the opportunity of thanking the office-bearers for their help in the work of the parish. The following elections were made:- Vicar’s churchwarden, Dr Mussen,J.P.; people’s churchwarden, Mr. John Corken; select vestry, Messers. William Fitzgerald, R.Willis, H.Ballance, James Lorimer, E.Johnston, A.Lorimer, J.Coburn, Thomas Sloane, S. Leslie, William Gresham, P.Corken, F. Barnes and the clergy and churchwardens ex-officio, Sidesmen – Messers. J. Higginson, John Ingram, and Robert Steele. It having been intimated to the meeting by Mr Joseph English that he could no longer, through failing health, act as honorary secretary to the Select Vestry, his resignation was accepted with the greatest possible regret. Mr English has acted in this capacity for the long period of thirty years, not only attending the meetings most regularly, and keeping the minutes most accurately, but in every other way showing the deep practical interest in the welfare of the parish. The following resolution was proposed by Dr. Mussen, seconded by Mr William Fitzgerald, and passed unanimously:- "That we, the members of the General Vestry of the parish of Glenavy, desire to acknowledge the great services rendered to the parish during the last thirty years by Mr Joseph English as honorary secretary to the Vestry. We accept his resignation with the most sincere regret, and we earnestly pray that God will spare him to dwell amongst us." It was decided to appoint Mr J. H. Crane to be honorary secretary. The meeting was brought to a close by the Chairman pronouncing the benediction.

Glenavy Parish Church 1902

Glenavy Parish Church was mentioned in the London Gazette in 1902. Extract from The London Gazette Monday, January 6th, 1902:

Whitehall, October 5th, 1901. Addresses and resolutions expressive of sympathy with His Majesty King Edward the Seventh and the Royal Family on the occasion of the lamented death of Her late Majesty Queen Victoria, and congratulation to the King upon His Majesty’s Accession to the Throne, have been received by the Secretary of State for the Home Department from the under mentioned Bodies for presentation to His Majesty, and have been presented accordingly:-

Glenavy Parish (County Antrim) Select Vestry.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 2nd August 1902

Dedication of a memorial pulpit

On July 27, at morning prayer, the vicar (Rev J. Boyle-Glover, M.A.) dedicated in the parish church a very chaste and beautiful pulpit, “erected by the relatives, parishioners, and other friends,” to the memory of the late Mr Joseph English, of Crumlin, who was for over fifty years closely identified with the best interests of the church and parish. The special preacher on the occasion was the Rev Wm. Moore, B.D., rector of St Patrick’s, Newry, and formerly curate of Glenavy. The preacher both in the parish church and also at the afternoon service in Crumlin paid a warm tribute to the late Mr. English, speaking of him, and justly so, as an earnest and sincere Christian, a consistent and loyal churchman, and a constant worker for the welfare of the parish. As already stated, the memorial pulpit is an exceedingly handsome one; it is Gothic in style and octagon in shape. The entrance is from the chancel by stairs of white marble, and the work is constructed from blocks of stone taken from the Caen stone quarries. The principal features are five diapers of panels, the centres of which have rich carvings, in English alabaster marble, forming a pleasing ground-work for the deeply-moulded arches, supported by carved capitals and columns of a dark green marble. The whole is surmounted by a cornice of a very chaste and exquisite design. On the plain faces of the octagon basement is engraved in solid raised letters the inscription :- “To the glory of God and in memory of Joseph English. Erected by relatives and friends. 1902.” The pulpit was supplied and erected by the firm of Messrs. Purdy and Millard, Belfast.

Glenavy Parish Church Magazine

Glenavy Parish Church Magazine  October 1903

Glenavy Parish Church Magazine
October 1903

The following are extracts from the October 1903 Magazine:

Vicar – Rev. J.M. Boyle-Glover, M.A.
Curate – Rev. E.M. Harris, B.A.


Parish Church – Sunday; Holy Communion, 1st and 3rd Sundays in
the month, after Morning Service. Morning Prayer, 11.30 a.m.
Evening Service, 7 p.m.

St. Andrew’s Feumore, -Sunday: Holy Communion, last Sunday
in month. Morning Prayer, 12 noon

Crumlin – Evening Prayer, 4.30 p.m.


Robert James Lewis and Mary Lowry


Lizzie Wickliffe

Consecration of St. John’s Crumlin – This important event in the history of or Parish has now taken place. It is a matter of the utmost thankfulness to know that the object of all our many prayers and efforts has been attained. We cannot in out limited space give a detailed account of the actual Consecration Service, or of the other Special Services connected with it. We would refer those who are anxious to read the full report to the News Letter of Monday September 14, or the Lisbon (SIC – Lisburn?) papers of the 18th. We would, however, say here that all the services were of a most solemn character, and were attended by large and deeply interested congregations. The special preachers were:- The Bishop of Dioceses: Revs. Canon McClintock, W.F. Garstin, and J.L.Sloane. The words which were spoken were most stimulating, helpful and kindly; each preacher referring in the language of praise in connexion with the erection of the new Church of St. John. The opinion has been expressed by all who have been inside the sacred building, that it is a credit to the architect (Mr. Geo. Sams), to the contractor (Mr. T.A. Irvine) and all who worked with him. It is, we think, not too much to say that for style (early English) and for beauty there are few churches which surpass it. The interior of the sacred edifice has been much enriched by very handsome gifts, the following among others may be mentioned:- Solid Silver Communion Service, from Mrs. Pakenham, Communion Linen, from Mrs McClintock; Font, Rev. E. and Mrs Harris; Bible for Lectern in memoriam; Mr. And Mrs. Irvine; Prayer Book for Desk, Dr. Mussen; Communion Service Books, Mr. J. Patterson and "A Friend"; Cloth for Holy Table, Mrs. Boyle Glover; Chancel Mats, Miss Benning, Carved Desk for Communion Table, Colonel McClintock; Notice Board, Mr. E. McClintock; Oak Hymn Board, Master Theodore Boyle-Glover; Markers for Bible, Rev. C.F. Newell; Markers for Prayer Book, Rev. J.H. Mervyn; Pulpit Lamp, Mrs. Harris. On Saturday, the 12th , the Clergy and visitors were hospitably entertained to tea by Miss English in the Masonic Hall, on which occasion Dr. Mussen, on behalf of the Select Vestry, congratulated the Vicar and parishioners the completion and consecration of St. John’s and expressed very warm thanks to all those inside and outside of the parish who had borne a part in carrying out this good work. The Vicar also gave expression to his feelings of gratitude to Almighty God for permitting him and his people to erect a House of Worship to His Glory. Thanks were also returned to Miss English for her kindness. September 12 will be long looked back upon as a day to be remembered with thankfulness in the old parish of Glenavy, which can now boast of a Parish Church, renowned for its age and beauty, and two chapels of ease – St. Andrew’s, Feumore, and St. John’s Crumlin. God grant that these buildings, dedicated to His worship, may be places where many shall gather together each Lord’s Day to praise and bless Him, Who is the Giver of all things.

Harvest Festivals – St. Andrew’s Feumore, Thursday Evening October 1, and Sunday, October 4. Parish Church, Friday October 23 and Sunday October 25. Special Preachers in Parish Church will be duly announced. "Offerings for Sunday School Prize Fund" and "Missionary Association."

Bible Classes will be commenced early in October. Days to be announced in Church.

Parish Church – Change of Hour of Evening Service – The Vicar desires that it should be known throughout the parish that the Hour of Evening Service, from November to May, will be 6.30.

Monthly Meetings – Fourscore, Wednesday, September 30, Feumore, October 1; Crew and Ballyvannon, Wednesday, October 7.

Glenavy Parish Church 1905

Extract from The Lisburn Herald – 28th January 1905


A meeting in support of this fund was held in the Protestant Hall, Glenavy on the 20th inst. – Dr. Mussen, J.P., in the chair. The meeting was very representative of the parish. The chairman, in an appropriate speech, stated the object of the meeting, and declared his belief that the old parish of Glenavy would not be found wanting but would be ready and willing to so its share towards raising the sum for which the diocese was assessed for the Auxiliary Fund. The following resolutions were proposed and passed: – First – "That we heartily approve of the appeal of the R.C.B. with reference to the Auxiliary Fund." This resolution was moved by Mr. J.C. Lepper (Belfast), who dealt with the subject in a most lucid manner, showing clearly how the need for this fund had arisen, and that it was the plain duty of all who loved the Church of Ireland to take a definite part in raising the necessary money. He further pointed out that the sum aimed at was £250,000 of which amount that diocese was asked to contribute £30,000 and if that was to be accomplished every parish and every parishioner must be ready to assist. The resolution was seconded by the Rev. Wm. Dowse in a most interesting speech, whose words could not fall to stir up the enthusiasm of all who heard them. The second resolution :- "That we, the parishioners of Glenavy consider it our duty, as loyal members of the Church of Ireland, to contribute to the Auxiliary Fund to the best of our ability" was proposed by Mr. T.J. English, seconded by Mr. Corken, supported by Mr. J. Laird, J.P. and passed unanimously. Mr. English and Mr. Laird in able and earnest speeches strongly commended the fund. A third resolution, proposed by Mr. Turkington, seconded by Mr. Willis, and supported by the Rev. J. Boyle Glover, vicar of the parish, was also passed to the effect that "A parochial committee of ladies be appointed to collect the contributions." At the close of the meeting, in proposing a hearty vote of thanks to the deputation, and also to the chairman, the vicar was able to announce that the contributions had already been promised amounting in the aggregate to £80. The meeting was closed with the benediction.

Extract from The Lisburn Herald – 5th August 1905


The annual fete to the children attending the three parochial Sunday schools was held on the 20th ult., and proved most successful. The children met at the Parish Church at 2.30, when a short service was held, after which, headed by the Glenavy and Crumlin Flute Bands, they proceeded to the vicarage, where a most enjoyable evening was spent. Tea was partaken of on the lawn at five o’clock. During the afternoon and evening races and games were engaged in, the enjoyment being kept up until 8.30, when the large company of children and their parents and friends dispersed, having given hearty cheers for the vicar and Mrs. Boyle – Glover, also for the Rev. E and Mrs Harris. The teachers and other friends were indefatigable in looking after the children’s comfort.

Extract from The Lisburn Herald – 16th September 1905


On the 10th inst. Special services in connection with the anniversary of the consecration of St. John’s Crumlin, the new daughter church erected two years ago, were held in the Parish Church, Glenavy, at 11.30, and in St. John’s at 4.30. The sermons at both services were preached by the Lord Bishop of the Diocese, who gave eloquent and impressive addresses. The other officiating clergymen were the Rev. J.M. Boyle – Glover, M.A., vicar, and Rev. E.M. Harris, curate of the parish. The combined choirs of the two churches rendered Macfarren’s "The Lord is my Shepherd" and Dr. Vincent’s Evening Service in G, under the direction of the organist of the parish, Mr, A.G. Camp, L.T.S.O. The offertories, which realised a handsome sum, were in aid of the fund for repairing the heating apparatus of the Parish Church.

Extract from the Lisburn Herald, October 21, 1905

Harvest Thanksgiving Services at Glenavy

Thanksgiving services for the blessings of harvest were held in the Parish Church, on 13th inst. At 7.30, and on Sunday, 15th inst., at 11.30 and 7. Also in St. John’s Crumlin at 4.30, and, at a previous date, in St. Andrew’s Feumore. The special preachers were the Rev. Canon Grierson, Rev. J.F. Radely, Rev. G.O. Woodward, and Rev. A. Miller. The following clergy also took part:- Rev. J.R. Bergin, Rev. J. Richardson, Rev. J.M. Boyle-Glover,vicar; and Rev. E.M. Harris, curate-assistant. The offertories were on behalf of the Sunday School Prize Fund and the Parochial Missionary Association. The special music was well rendered by the combined choirs under Mr. A.G. Camp, organist of the parish, and consisted of Barnby’s "O Lord how manifold are Thy Works." Te Deum (Simper), Jubilate (Jackson), and at evening service (Magnificant and Nunc Dimittis) specially composed. The service on the 13th was preceded by an organ recital, when the following items were performed Marcia (Spohr); Sabat Mater (Rossini), (a) Introduction, (b) Stabat Mater Dolorosa, c. Cujus Animam; melody in F (Rubinstein); Grand Offertoire in G (Wely); “Lost Chord” (Sullivan); Festive March in D (Smart).

Glenavy Parish Church 1906

Extract from The Lisburn Herald – Saturday 21st April 1906


The annual meeting of registered vestrymen of this parish was held in the schoolroom on Easter Monday. The meeting having been opened by prayer, the minutes of the last Easter Vestry were read and signed. The vicar, Rev. J.M. Boyle-Glover, in a few brief remarks, congratulated the vestry on the highly satisfactory financial state of the parish, there being a substantial balance to its credit. Ha thanked all who had assisted in the work of the parish, and especially his colleague, Rev. E.M. Harris, who had been indefatigable in the performance of his duties. Reference having been made to the Auxiliary Fund, which was being well supported, the elections took place, with the following result:- Parochial nominators – Dr. Mussen, J.P.; Mr James Lorimer, and Mr. Fitzgerald. Synods men – Dr. Mussen, Messrs. Fitzgerald, H. Ballance, and J. Corken. Churchwardens – Vicar’s Mr. H. Ballance; people’s, Mr. Willis. Select Vestry – Dr. Mussen, J.P., Messers. Fitxgerald, E. Johnston, Andrew Lorrimer, J. Corken, S.Leslie, R. Colburn, Alex. Haire, Wm. L. Briggs, Joseph Colburn, James Patterson and John Bickerstaffe. Sidesmen – Parish Church, Messrs J. Wilson, J. Doak, James Ross, E. Wilkinson, and E. Ingram; St. John’s, Crumlin, Messrs. J. Patterson, F. Martin, and R. Adams. The meeting was brought to a close with the benediction.

Extract from The Lisburn Herald – Saturday 15th December 1906


The annual social reunion and concert in connection with this parish took place on the evening of the 29th ult., in the Protestant Hall, Glenavy, under the chairmanship of the vicar of the parish, Rev. J.M. Boyle-Glover, M.A. This social fixture is always looked forward to and enjoyed by the parishioners, and on this occasion it met with the success which its excellent programme merited. The speakers were Rev. W. Dowse, rector of St. Thomas’s, Belfast and Rev. J.W. Minchin, rector of Ballinderry, both of whose addresses were admirably suited to the occasion. The vicar, in opening, referred to the progress of the parish in things spiritual and temporal during the past year, making special reference to the mission which was held in the parish, and the undoubted good which had resulted. He also expressed his thanks to his energetic colleague, Rev. E Harris, and the other church workers, for their willing help. Tea having been partaken of, a musical programme was favourably received. Miss Cooksey (Belfast) sang "Light in Darkness", "”The Kerry Dances" and (by special request) Gounod’s beautiful setting of "There is a green Hill far away" with great tenderness and feeling. Mrs Newell’s rendering of "She is far from the land" and "Avourneen" called forth much applause. Mrs Yair sang "A Broken heart" in appropriate style, and the duet with Rev. A. Yair, "I want the moon" was also well rendered. In her rendition of "Going to Kildare" and the "Ould Plaid Shawl", Miss McKeown was at her best, and she replied to the encores with "The Child’s Dream" and "My treasure". Miss Bolton sang "May Morning" and "Whisper and I shall hear" in her well-known style, while in the "Sweetheart’s Return" Miss Ingram was well received, and replied with "Cuckoo in the Orchard". The "Donkey Cart" prettily rendered by Miss Barnes, was well received, and was followed by "I have a secret". Mr. Matthews (Belfast), who possesses a fine voice and vigorous style, was warmly applauded for his very excellent rendering of "Go to Sea". "Thy Sentinel am I", and "The King’s Minstrel", replying to insistent encores with "The Old Brigade" and "There’s a land". The Rev. Leslie Smith (Antrim) contributed in a careful manner on the violin Costa’s celebrated "March of the Israelites". In the solos "Violets" and "Dawn" Mr. W. Briggs exhibited his usual ability in tenderness of treatment and expression. The accompaniments were played by Mr A G Camp in accomplished style.

Glenavy Parish Church 1907

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 2nd February 1907


The annual soiree and distribution of prizes in connection with the three Sunday Schools of this parish were held last week at Feumore, Glenavy and Crumlin. Tea was provided for the children, and interesting programmes were submitted to large audiences of the parents and friends of the children. At Feumore the prizes were kindly distributed by Mrs. Fitzgerald, at Glenavy by Mrs Boyle Glover, and at Crumlin by Mrs McClintock. The vicar (Rev J.M. Boyle-Glover, M.A.) thanked the various contributors to the programme, and referred especially to the staff of loyal and zealous Sunday-school teachers, whose work and assistance be so highly valued, special thanks being due to Mr. Martin, superintendent of Crumlin School. Votes of thanks were also conveyed to the ladies who so kindly attended to distribute the prizes, and whose interest in all philanthropic enterprises in the district was so well known and so greatly appreciated.

GFS Meeting

The following extract is from the Belfast Newsletter dated 18th January 1910 and is reproduced with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Parish of Glenavy

A social meeting of the members of the Glenavy branch of the GFS took place on the evening of the 15th inst in the new Schoolhouse, Glenavy. Notwithstanding the inclemency of the weather there was a large attendance, the different parts of the parish being well represented. Tea having been partaken of at 630 the vicar presided, and, in his own name and that of the branch secretary, Mrs Boyle Glover, offered a hearty welcome to all. A most enjoyable and varied programmes of songs, readings, and recitations was given by the following:-

Mrs Dundas, Miss Mockler, Miss Barnes, Rev W H Dundas, Rev C C Manning, Rev G R Olden, Rev WRS Clarendon, and Mr A G Camp. A short but most appropriate and helpful address was also given by the Rev. C C Manning. Altogether a very happy and profitable evening was spent. A vote of thanks having been passed to the friends who assisted, the doxology was sung and the benediction pronounced.

Farewell to Miss Louisa Ingram

The following is an extract from the Belfast Newsletter dated 23rd February 1910. Thanks to the Belfast Newsletter for permission to reproduce this article.

Parish of Glenavy

A meeting of the Band of Hope was held in Laurelvale Schoolhouse, Crumlin, on Friday evening, 18th February, and was exceedingly well attended. The chair was taken at 7.30 by the Rev. J. Boyle Glover, vicar of the parish. A varied and interesting musical programme having been enjoyed, a very suitable and earnest address was given by the Rev. T.J. Forsythe, vicar of Randalstown. During the evening a parochial presentation, consisting of a purse of gold, was presented by Mrs. Boyle-Glover, on behalf of the subscribers, to Miss Louisa Ingram, on the occasion of her marriage and departure from the parish. Miss Ingram had been for many years a Sunday and day school teacher, a leading member of the parish church choir, and also organist of the district church of St. John, Crumlin, and in all these capacities had ever proved herself most painstaking, willing, and able. The address to Miss Ingram was read by the chairman, and it was expressed the great regard and esteem felt for her by her many friends, and also congratulations and good wishes for her future. Speeches were also made by Mr. F.C. Martin, crumlin, and Mr. A.G. Camp, Glenavy, in which they bore high testimony to Miss Ingram’s ability and readiness to help in everything that was for the welfare of the parishioners. The proceedings, which were most happy and interesting throughout, were brought to a close by the singing of the doxology and pronouncing of the benediction.

Easter Vestry Meeting, 1910

The following is an extract from the Belfast Newsletter dated 31st March 1910 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.

Parish of Glenavy

The Easter general vestry meeting was held in the Sunday schoolhouse on the 26th inst. – Rev. J.M. Glover presiding. The meeting was opened with prayer by Rev. W.R.S. Clarendon, B.A. The chairman presented the annual report, and spoke of the satisfactory condition of the finances of the parish and of the various home and foreign missionary societies were supported. He referred with gratitude to the exceedingly liberal support extended to the auxiliary fund, now closed, the parish having sent in to the diocesan office £270, or £20 more than the sum promised. Special reference was also made to the fact that practically all of the 300 church families in the parish contributed to the assessment fund. The chairman concluded his address by expressing the joy in it had given him to meet 154 communicants at the Lord’s table on Easter Day. The following appointments were made: – Vicar’s churchwarden, Dr. Mussen, J.P.; people’s churchwarden, Mr. H. Ballance; select vestry – Messrs Corken, Johnston, Gregory, W.L. Briggs, J. Colburn, . Colburn, Patterson, Bickerstaff, Leslie, Willis, Haire and Sergeant Barrett, R.I.C.; sidesmen – parish church – Messrs T Ingram, Greene, Irvine, Wilkinson, McMullan, and J. Steele; St. Andrew’s – Mr. E. Johnston; St. John’s – Messrs Martin, Adams, and Patterson. The meeting was brought to a close with the benediction.

7th Anniversary – Church of St John, Crumlin

The following extract is from the Lisburn Herald dated 24th September 1910.

Parish of Glenavy
Anniversary Services.

On the 18th inst., the seventh anniversary of the consecration of the Church of St.John, Crumlin, was suitably observed. Services of a festive and thanksgiving nature were held as follows, and were exceedingly well attended – St. John’s, Holy Communion 8.30; Parish Church, morning prayer and Holy Communion 11.30; St John’s evensong 4.30; and Parish Church at 7. The special preacher was the Rev. Canon Moore, M.A., Vicar of Holywood, who delivered most appropriate and helpful sermons. The offertories, which were liberally contributed to were in aid of the "Local Diocesan Fund" (in the Parish Church) and "Special Church Purposes" (in St. John’s). The special collectors in the latter church were Dr. Mussen, J.P.; Dr. A.A. Mussen (Liverpool), Dr. Norman Patrick, and Mr. R.G. Scott. The special music was particularly well rendered by the combined choirs, under Mr. A.G. Camp and included the anthem "Lift up your heads" (J.L. Hopkins), and Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis in A flat" (A.G. Camp).

Fourscore School and Zenana Missionary School

The following extract is from the Lisburn Standard dated 26th November 1910
Parish of Glenavy

A meeting in connection with the Church of England Zenana Missionary School was held in the Fourscore Schoolhouse, Glenavy, on the 15th inst., and in spite of a sharp snow storm the attendance was very encouraging. The meeting having been opened with a missionary prayer and hymn, the lecturer, Rev. Alex. Miller, rector of Hilltown, proceeded to give an address on the evangelistic work carried on in the zenanas of India by lady missionaries, lady doctors, and Bible women. The lecture was illustrated by excellently coloured slides supplied by the society, and for over an hour the earnest attention of the audience was well maintained. AT the close, the chairman (Rev. J. Boyle-Glover_ when thanking the lecturer for his most instructive, address, referred to the increasing interest taken in foreign missions by many in the parish. A most helpful and interesting meeting was brought to a close with the benediction.

Fund Raising for Parochial Missionary Association

The following is an extract from The Belfast Newsletter dated 15th December 1910 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.


A missionary sale of work, organised by the members of the parochial branch of the G.F.S., was held in Glenavy on the 10th inst., and, despite inclement weather, received generous support. The opening ceremony took place at 3.30 o’clock, in the presence of a large gathering. Rev. Canon Clarendon, rector of Maralin, presided, and after prayer and praise, called upon the vicar of the parish (Rev. J.M. Boyle-Glover. M.A.) to make a statement. The vicar, in doing so dwelt strongly upon the deep interest the members of the G.F.S. in the parish (numbering about sixty) took in the cause of mission work, and thanked them for the great practical assistance they had given to their branch secretary (Mrs. Boyle-Glover) in getting up the sale, which was for the purpose of augmenting the funds of the Parochial Missionary Association. The chairman in his address, gave an instructive account of his visit in Edinburgh. He then called upon Mrs. Robinson, wife of the Dean of Belfast, to open the sale. Mrs. Robinson having spoken of the pleasure she experienced in being there, and also of her regret that Mrs. Crozier was unable through unforeseen circumstances to fulfil her engagement to open the sale, made a most helpful speech, and in graceful terms declared the sale open. A hearty vote of thanks having been passed, on the motion of Mr. J. Laird, J.P., to both Mrs. Robinson and the chairman, sales commenced, the result being at the close of the evening a substantial sum for the cause.

G.F.S. Social Evening

The following extract is from the Lisburn Standard dated Saturday December 31, 1910.

Parish Of Glenavy

A social evening in connection with the Glenavy Branch of the G.F.S. was held in the new school-house on the 27th inst., and was most successful in every way. The Branch was exceedingly well represented, practically every member being present from the several districts of Glenavy, Crumlin, and Feumore. After tea had been partaken of, the Rev. J. Boyle-Glover spoke a few words, extending a hearty welcome to all. He also took the opportunity of warmly thanking the members for their enthusiastic support at the recent missionary sale. During the evening short helpful addresses were given by Mrs Walkington (Ballinderry) and Mrs Boyle-Glover who also distributed the motto-cards for the new year. A most enjoyable musical programme was next entered upon, in which the following took part:- Miss McCord, Miss M. Ferris, Miss Peel (Ballinderry), Miss Barnes, Rev. W.R.S. Clarendon, and Messrs. W.L. Briggs, A.G. Camp, and F.W. Martin. The singing of Christmas carols and the benediction brought a very pleasant evening to a close.

Anniversary Services for the Church of St John

The following is an extract from the Lisburn Herald dated 23rd September 1911.

Glenavy Parish
Anniversary Services

On the 17th inst the eighth anniversary of the consecration of the Church of St. John, Crumlin, was observed. The following services were held – St. John’s – Holy Communion, 8.30am; evening prayer 4.30pm. Parish Church – Morning prayer and Holy Communion 11.30am; evening prayer 7 pm. The services were well attended, that at St. John’s at 4.30pm being so much so that additional seating had to be provided to accommodate an overflowing congregation in the aisles. The special preacher at the morning and afternoon services was the lord Bishop of the Diocese, who gave most helpful and eloquent addresses, preaching from the texts, Isaiah vi and 2, and Acts 11.,42. A most touching reference was made by the bishop in his morning sermon to the late ex-Primate, Archbishop Alexander, and the "Dead March" was played after the offertory hymn. The offertory at the parish church was devoted to the "local diocesan fund," and that at St. John’s to "special church purposes." Liberal responses were made. The festive music included "Lift up your heads" (Patton) and Arnold’s Magnificant and Nunc Dimittis. The singing of the combined choirs of the Parish Church and St. John’s was very effective and devotional. The following clergy assisted – Rev. J. Boyle-Glover (Vicar), Rev. A.M. Yair, and Rev. W.R.S. Clarendon.

Glenavy Parish Church 1913

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Saturday 29th March 1913


The general Easter vestry meeting was held in the Sunday school house on Easter Monday, the vicar, Rev. J. Boyle-Glover, M.A., presiding. The meeting was opened with prayer by Rev. W.R.S. Clarendon, B.A.

The following appointments were made – Vicar’s churchwarden, Dr. Mussen, J.P.; People’s churchwarden, Mr. F.G. Barrett; select vestry, Dr. Norman Patrick, Messers. H. ballance, E. Johnston, R. Willis, S. Leslie, R. Colburn, J. Colburn, William Maxwell, W.L. Briggs, J. Patterson, J. Corken, and J. Bickerstaffe; honorary parochial treasurer to assessment fund, Dr. Norman Patrick; sidesmen, parish Church, Messrs. T.A.Irvine, E.Wilkinson, W.White, J. Steele, Thos. Steele, Lucas Waring, junior; and John Ingram Jun; St. Andrew’s, Mr E.Johnston; St. John’s, Messers. J. Patterson, R.Adams, F.C. Martin and J. Bickerstaffe.

Glenavy Parish Church 1914

Extract from The Belfast News Letter – Friday 17th April 1914


The Easter Vestry meeting was held in the Sunday School House on the 14th inst., the vicar, Rev. J.M.Boyle Glover, M.A., presiding. The meeting having been opened with prayer by the Rev. R. S. Breene, B.A., curate-assistant, the minutes of the previous general vestry meeting were read and signed. In a short address the chairman thanked most warmly the vestry and all the other church workers in the parish for their hearty co-operation throughout the year. He specially referred to the splendid success of the bazaar held in September last, which resulted in the clearance of the debt of £400 upon the glebe. Touching briefly upon spiritual matters, the chairman stated that, notwithstanding a good deal of sickness in the parish, 160 communicated on Easter Day. He was glad also to be able to state that the Protestant Orphan and Missionary Societies continued to receive most generous support. The following appointments were made – Vicar’s churchwarden, Dr. A. Mussen, J.P., people’s, Mr F.G. Barrett. Select vestry – Messrs. H. Ballance, J. Corken, E. Johnstone, R. Willis, S. Leslie, R. Colburn, Wm. Maxwell, Wm. L. Briggs, J. Colburn, J. Patterson, J. Bickerstaff and Wm. Bolton. Honorary treasurer to assessment fund, Dr. Mussen. Sidesmen – Parish Church, Messrs. T.A. Irvine, E. Wilkinson, W.W. White, J. Steele, Thomas Steele, L. Waring jun.; and John Ingram, jun.; St. Andrew’s, Mr. E Johnston; St. John’s, Crumlin, Messrs. J. Patterson, R. Adams, F.C. Martin, and J. Bickerstaff. A vacancy in the number of synodsmen was filled by the appointment of Mr. H. Ballance. The meeting was closed with the benediction.

War Memorial Plaque inside Glenavy Parish Church

There is a wall-mounted plaque in the porch of Glenavy Parish Church. There are a total of 72 names. For a full transcription please see Glenavy War Memorials.

Glenavy Parish Church 1923

The following article is the fifth in a series of seven titled "Glenavy" written by William McLeavy. The articles originally appeared in The Lisburn Herald in 1923. Please note that some of the original articles were unreadable.

The Lisburn Herald, Saturday May 19th, 1923

Glenavy in the religious realm, is fairly well represented; in the village we have the Church of Ireland and Methodist Churches, and a short mile distant is the Roman Catholic Chapel, St. Joseph’s with the Parochial House attached – fine massive buildings having a commanding view from all angles. The peal of the Chapel bell, has a peculiar sound of its own, pleasing in tone and most attractive, quite noticeable from those in the surrounding churches. Whilst the Presbyterian Church is not a religious force inside the bounds of my sketch, just outside the boundary line it is the predominant religion. Crumlin, Killead and Dundrod are flourishing churches whose pulpits are occupied by men of ability and scholarly attainments, but to keep to my text it does not come under my present review. The village itself has been most conservative in its religion, the majority of the inhabitants being devoted and loyal adherents of the Church of Ireland. The street preacher and roving evangelist get little or no countenance. Their devotion and loyalty to their Church irrespective of whether the rector was a man of their choice or unpopular resemble the ambient Psalmist in his heartfelt ecstasy exclaiming, "If I forget thee, O Jerusalem let my right hand forget it’s cunning." For architectural splendour, massive structure, and artistic beauty the Parish Church stands pre-eminent above all others. The sites and erections of nearly all the village churches were, in greater part, the work of the landlord when the Church was the recognised State religion, and the landlords the garrison of Ireland. Her adherents know little or nothing of voluntary contributions or givings, all creeds and classes were compelled to pay tithe for the maintenance of the clergy, hence her members were highly privileged in the financial aspect , but no prerogatives in appointment of rectors or church officials , the landlords being primary the nominees for the State, and so landlords’ sons or aristocrats of that type got to be rectors, men like the Honourable Blackwood, gentlemen of nobility and caste. To be rector even of a village church stood high in the social scale, ranking almost with that of Privy Councillor, and as a consequence this church stood unflinchingly as the champion of landlordism even after the Disestablishment and through the great struggle of the tenant farmers for emancipation from bondage and slavery, culminating in the great charter of liberty, freedom and equity, the Land and Purchase Acts. The clergyman of this Church stood aloof, never to be seen on a platform championing the cause of the struggling bond servants; and to the credit of the landlords these village churches are drawing a pretty good annuity from their generosity and benevolence. It is not my purpose to dogmatise as to whether or not the spiritual status of the Church has improved or greater power, given the people in the choice of her rectors or administration of her funds, but I consider your many readers will be with me in the assertion that the old type of clergymen were more essential and useful to the social and economic conditions of the village and country life. In the old days you saw the rector driving his carriage and pair of horses, maintaining a retinue of servants, spending perhaps double of his salary in the employment of labour which was the most conducive to prosperity. Oh what a mighty change in these days!

Glenavy can boast of some very distinguished vicars, men honoured and revered by the people, cultured and dignified in their every movement, the true type of Christian gentleman. In this review I shall confine myself and observations to the Revd. Edward Johnson Smyth who for many years was the year of the parish and minister of the Established Church of Ireland, also a landlord who resided and spent his income in this his native land. He took a great interest and pride in "Goremount" (where his son resided), one of the finest farms and residential holdings in the parish. He was an ideal pastor, caring for and looking after his parishioners, kind and considerate to the poor. Although not an eloquent or able preacher he made it a point to have none but the best of curates , who rose to be distinguished men in the Church. Some considered Mr. Smyth as of a proud and haughty nature, but I rather consider him refined and cultured, dignified in bearing, true to his exalted calling and position, and yet underneath all, he was a most devoted and adherent and advocate of the traditions of his Church, believing she could do no wrong. He had no vision or faith in the rise and progress of democracy and he is in that non-conformity. Doubtless many of my readers will recall his dogged and persistent opposition to the system of National Education then introduced. So determined was he that he retained and paid teachers of mediocre ability at a starvation salary in order to thwart and prevent , if possible, the benefits and advantages coming to the village. I have no doubt he acted with an honest, though prejudiced motive, believing that the interests of the Church would suffer by the system. In this connection it brings me to refer to an old and honoured resident of Glenavy who passed away a few months ago in the person of Mr James Gibson of Crossvale House, in his 84th year, of whom Glenavy owes much to an educational capacity. He possessed the rare and unique qualifications of being a first-class teacher and was called upon to take up the duties of principal of a school in the village under the National Board of Education. His work and labours were soon recognised in the growing and advancement and popularity of the new system, so that in a short period the school under the Church Education had few scholars, and was ultimately closed. In addition to his school work Mr Gibson endeavoured to raise the standard of education by holding night classes for those more mature in age, in which also he taught the lighter subject of science. Their classes were well attended and greatly prized. In an interview quite recently with a person who attended these classes, he said Mr Gibson has the faculty of presenting his knowledge and learning in such a clear and intelligent manner, so simplified that anyone with brains could grasp and understand. In addition to Glenavy he was principal o other schools in Ulster, retiring with the pension in force.

Easter Vestry, 1924

The following extract is from The Lisburn Standard Friday May 2nd, 1924.

Easter Vestries – Glenavy

The vicar, Rev. R.H. Muir, B.A., presided.

Appointments –

Vicar’s Churchwarden – Mr. H. McKee;
People’s Churchwarden – Mr. J.H. Haslett.
Parochial Nominators – Messrs. A.H. Mussen, M.D., J.P.; J. Hamill, E. Johnston; Supplemental – Messrs. J. Barnes, J. Bickerstaffe, A.Ross.
Diocesan Synods men – Messrs. J. Hamill, E. Johnston, J. Patterson
Glebe Wardens – Messrs. H. McKee, J.H. Haslett.
Select Vestry – Mrs. Glover, Mrs. Walker, Miss Hartley, Messrs. H. Higginson, D. Johnston, E. Johnston, G. Johnston, D. Mairs, F.C. Martin, R.P. McLain, A.H. Mussen, M.D., J.P; J. Patterson
Sidesmen (Parish Church) – Messrs. W.J. Bell, A. Farr, J. Hamill, A.Ross; (St. Andrews) – Messrs. D. Johnston, W.H. McKee; (St. John’s) – Messrs. W. Frazer, W.McMullen, H. Robinson.

Photographs of Glenavy Parish Church

Photograph of Glenavy Parish Church

Photograph of Glenavy Parish Church
in possession of a friend
Date unknown

Glenavy Parish Church

Photograph of Glenavy Parish Church
in possession of a friend
Date unknown

Organ & Vocal Recital

The following extract is from The Lisburn Standard January 30th 1925.


Re-Opening of Organ
(D.V.) February 7th 1925.
SERVICE – 7.30p.m.


Organ and Vocal Recital

Organist – Mr. Herbert Scott, A.R.C.M.
Soprano – Miss Ethel Davison, L.R.A.M.
Tenor – Mr. Fred Mackey
Bass – Mr. David McAlpine

Silver Collection in aid of Organ Fund

Killultagh Fete

The following extract is from The Lisburn Standard dated 13 02 1925

School Fete at Killultagh

The annual outdoor fete in connection with the Methodist Sunday Schools was held on Thursday, the 18th inst, the place selected being the old historic grounds of Killultagh, the residence of John Laird, Esq., J.P., kindly granted for the occasion. The children and friends numbering about 150, assembled at the schoolroom, where a short service was held, after which they proceeded by cars to the place of rendezvous, where they were warmly received and most hospitably entertained by the esteemed host (J.Laird Esq., J.P.) ably assisted by Mrs. Laird and Mr. William Laird. After partaking of a sumptuous tea , so kindly provided by the hosts, a number of games, races, &C., were indulged in. As the party were about to return home, Mr. Laird had another special treat in store for the little ones, viz., sweets and gingerbread, and a supply of pears was distributed gratis by Mr. John Moore. A number of speeches were made, and a hearty vote of thanks was passed to the Laird family, who had contributed so largely to the day’s enjoyment; throwing themselves heartily into all that could make the young people happy. Three hearty cheers were given for the devoted superintendent (Miss Johnston) and the Pastor (Rev. J.W. McWilliam), and the procession again turned homewards , feeling that a most enjoyable day had come to an end, but that Killultagh would still live in their memories.

Appointments, 1929

The following is an extract from The Lisburn Herald 20th April 1929


The Rev R R Muir BA Vicar presiding Appointments: Churchwwardens: (Vicar’s) G Evans; (people’s) J Thompson; select vestry John Addis, John Bickerstaffe, Thomas Farr, Alex Ferguson, William Huston, Dalway Johnson, Edward Johnson, F C Martin, James McMullen, James Walker; sidesmen Parish Church A Ferguson, H Richardson, W Watson; St Andrew’s T Farr, E Johnson; St Johns W Frazer, Wm McMullen, J McMullen; glebe wardens G Evans, James Thompson.

Parish Church Appointments – 1931

The extract is from the Belfast Newsletter dated Saturday 11th April 1931 and appears with permission of the Belfast Newsletter.


Rev. R.R. Muir, B.A. (Vicar), presided. Appointments – Vicar’s churchwarden, Mr. W.G. Evans. People’s Churchwarden, Mr. A. Ferguson.

Select Vestry -Messrs. J. Addis, F.C. Martin, S. Johnston, D. Johnston, T. Farr, D. Mairs, J.P.; J. McMullan, E. Totten, J.H. Haslett, J.Higginson, J. Thompson, J. Walker.

Glenavy Parish Church 1934

Supplement to the Lisburn Herald – Saturday 27th February 1934

Interesting history

Mr Alexander Woods, formerly of Lisburn, and now resident in Glenavy, in a most interesting brochure, gives a short history of the local parish church. Occupying only three pages, the author has managed to give an outline of the church’s history from the time of its formation back in St. Patrick’s day up to the present day. Actually there have been several churches on the site, the one being built in 1664 escaping the ravages of James II’s army on account of its low position and surrounding forest. A portion of Dule Schomberg’s troops was quartered in the district, and "in consideration of the kindness shown them," presented the church with a silver chalice, which still can be seen. It bears the inscription :- "This plate was given to ye Church of Glenavy by the Officers of ye Queen’s Regent of Horse, commanded by ye Honble. Major-General St. John Lanier, in the year 1690. In Honorem Ecclesiae Anglicanae." This regiment was known as "Queen’s" from 1685 to 1714; from the latter date until 1746 became the "King’s Own Regiment of Horse", when its name changed to "King’s Dragoon guards" which title it bears today.

From the church records we get some interesting weather information. For example, 1814 was remarkable for the amount of snow that fell in the early months. This was "accompanied with an intense frost". At the end of the year occurred "the greatest fall of rain that has happened in the memory of man".

"The snow began to fall on January 3rd and was not completely thawed until March 29th, continuing on the ground for 85 days, during which time the ground was covered to an unusual depth, so as to be impassable to both man and horse."

"The rain continued for about two months almost without intermission, and produced such excessive floods that the new bridge over Crumlin River at Cidercourt was entirely swept away. Lough Neagh was swelled to an unprecedented height and overflowed its banks for a considerable distance, by which many families were compelled to leave their habitations and much property was lost."

"In the same year (1814) Lough Neagh was frozen, when such was the intensity of the frost that Lieu – Col Hyland undertook and accomplished the hazardous feat of riding his horse from Crumlin waterfoot to Ram’s Island; and the singular novelty was exhibited of a drag chase on the ice round the island with Ms. Stafford Whittle’s pack of harriers."

Glenavy Parish Church 1936

The Lisburn Standard – Friday 24th April 1936

Easter Vestries

Rev W J Chambers presided at Glenavy Easter Vestry meeting. Appointments – Vicar’s Churchwarden Mr J Haire. People’s Churchwarden – Mr W L Briggs. Parochial nominators – Messrs W L Briggs, J Lyle, and R Robinson; supplemental nominators – Messrs F C Martin and J Walker, Diocesan synods men – Messrs W L Briggs and G Johnston. Select Vestry – Miss Houston, Miss English, Messrs WH Johnston, WL Ross, J Thompson, J Lyle, V Higginson, G Johnston, J Walker, H Richardson, R Robinson, and G Rollins. Sidesmen, Parish Church – Messrs D Steele, A Ferguson, W Watson, J E Morgan, and M Walker; St John’s – Messrs T W Doyle, W Frazer, and J McMullan; St. Andrew’s – Messrs T Farr and D Johnston, Treasurer Mr W H Johnston.

Coronation Celebrations – 1937

Glenavy Coronation Celebrations 12th May 1937

Glenavy Coronation Celebrations 12th May 1937. Commencing with a service in the Parish Church at 1.30pm

Glenavy Parish Church 1938

Glenavy Parish Church on fire Decenber 1938

Glenavy Parish Church on fire Decenber 1938

Christmas Eve, December 1938 was to prove a disastrous day in the history of this Parish Church. A fire started after pipes froze during a very severe frost. The church was completely gutted. One lady, who was a child at the time, told me she remembered going down to Glenavy the next day and seeing "the steam still rising off the walls". She added, "It really got to you then, because you just couldn’t believe that it had happened. There was a terrible frost and the pipes were frozen. Only for the Rev. Chambers, we wouldn’t have had a church until after the war. He came and he really worked to get it going again."

Picturesque County Antrim Parish Church destroyed

Source unknown. Picturesque County Antrim Parish Church destroyed. Glenavy Parish Church which was completely gutted by fire at the weekend.(1938)

Aftermath of the disastrous fire in Dec 1938

Aftermath of the disastrous fire in Dec 1938

This was an example of the determination to have the church restored to its former glory again.

The following extract from the Belfast Telegraph dated Tuesday, December 27th, 1938 with permission from the Belfast Telegraph.

Others badly damaged

Boiler explosions caused by frozen pipes were responsible for five Northern Ireland Church fires during the Christmas Holidays.
Strabane Presbyterian Church and Glenavy Parish Church were gutted, the vestry of Seskinore Parish Church was wrecked by an explosion, and slight damage was caused to high Street Presbyterian Church, Antrim, and St Thomas’s Parish Church, Lisburn Road, Belfast. A second outbreak occurred at the latter this morning. The Belfast Fire brigade was called out to the Glenavy and Antrim fires, both of which occurred on Saturday night…


Glenavy Parish Church, which was only recently renovated, when electric lighting was installed, was destroyed by fire on Saturday night. The church had a seating capacity for about 350 people. About eight p.m. on Saturday a passing motorist’s attention was drawn to the building by smoke issuing from it, and he promptly gave the alarm.

Belfast Fire Brigade were called, but before they reached the scene the clock and bell in the belfry had crashed to the ground and the roof of the church had also collapsed.

Obtaining a good supply of water from the Glenavy river the firemen soon had hoses playing on the blazing building. The fire, however, had such a firm grip that it was impossible to save the interior and the firemen consequently confined their efforts to saving the belfry and to keep the flames from spreading to adjoining property.

Fortunately the records were kept by Rev. W.J. Chambers at the rectory.

Re-Opening and Consecration of Glenavy Parish Church

re-opening and consecration of the church after the fire in 1937

An invite issued by James Walker on behalf of Glenavy Parish Church for the re-opening and consecration of the church after the fire in 1937

Reopening Glenavy Parish Church, 1939

"Reopening Glenavy Parish Church –
The Bishop of Down and Connor and Dromore (Rt Rev Dr MacNeice) receiving an invitation at the church door to consecrate the building."
Courtesy of Belfast Telegraph
Monday 30th October, 1939

St Aidan's Church, 1939

"St. Aidan’s Church. Glenavy,
which is to be re-opened and consecrated on Saturday. The old church was destroyed by fire at Christmas, 1938."
Courtesy of Belfast Telegraph
Thursday 26th October, 1939

Extract from The Northern Whig and Belfast Post – Saturday 31st December 1938

Only walls standing at Strabane and Glenavy
Severe frost plays havoc with heating apparatus
Seskinore Boiler explosion
Volunteer Fire-fighters help to save Antrim building

Two Ulster churches – Strabane Presbyterian Church and St. Aidan’s (Church of Ireland), Glenavy, County Antrim, were destroyed by fire during the Christmas holiday week-end. High Street Presbyterian Church, Antrim, would have met a similar fate but for the valiant efforts of volunteer fire-fighters. The vestry floor and roof at Seskinore Parish Church, County Tyrone, were demolished owing to the bursting of a boiler. In each case frost is believed to have affected the heating apparatus.

At Strabane and Glenavy only the walls of the churches were left standing. The outbreak at Antrim was discovered in time to enable towns-people to confine the flames to the basement until the arrival of the Belfast Fire Brigade.

Glenavy Building Gutted

Villagers Thwarted by Rapid Spread of Flames

St. Aidan’s Parish Church at Glenavy, County Antrim, was completely gutted on Saturday night despite the efforts of Belfast Fire Brigade. The outbreak was discovered about 8.30 and the flames spread so quickly that although there was a prompt answer to the summons on the part of the villagers all they could do was to stand idly by and watch the building burn.

When the fire brigade reached the scene the church was ablaze from end to end, and despite their strenuous efforts only the walls were left standing.

So fierce were the flames – which could be seen for miles around – that it was found impossible to save any of the interior decorations or pews.

While the fire was at its height, the bell fell out of the belfry and crashed through the roof into the porch.
It is believed that the fire was caused through the pipes in the heating system being frozen, this causing the boiler to burst.

Saved by Promptness

It is stated that only prompt action on the part of the sexton of the Methodist Church in Glenavy prevented that building from catching fire also. The heating apparatus had been lighted and the sexton detected a smell of burning.

On investigation it is understood he found the pipes red hot and hurriedly placed wet sacking over them, after which he extinguished the fire under the boiler.

It would not be long before the Parish Church was back in action again. A concerted effort by clergy, parishioners, friends and others enabled the church to be restored again.

Extract from The Lisburn Standard – Friday January 6, 1939

Recent fire at Glenavy Parish Church

A meeting of the Diocesan Council of Down, Connor and Dromore was held on Wednesday; the Lord Bishop presiding in Clarence Place Minor Hall, Belfast… The burning of Glenavy parish Church was considered at length, and the secretaries were requested to communicate with The Representative Church Body on the subject of insurance..

An air of normality was maintained during this difficult period. The Select vestry was selected as in former years in order that church business could continue:

Extract from The Lisburn Standard Friday April 21 1939

Easter Vestries

Rev W J Chambers presided at Glenavy Easter Vestry meeting. Appointments – Churchwardens – vicar’s, Mr Wm Bell; People’s Mr W L Briggs; select vestry – Miss English, Miss McLaughlin, Mrs J Walker, Messrs W H Johnston, G. Johnston, G. Johnston, J. Thompson, J.E. Morgan, A. Ferguson, W. Leslie, E. Cormican, F. Chambers, J. Walker; Parochial nominators, Messrs. W.L. Briggs, W.H. Johnston, J. Walker; supplemental, Messrs. G. Johnston, F. Chambers, J. McMullen; diocesan synods men, Messrs. W.L. Briggs, G. Johnston; Sidesmen, Parish Church, Messrs. D. Steele, A. Ferguson, W. Watson, C. Bell, J.E. Morgan; St Johns , Messrs. T.W. Doyle, W. Frazer, J. McMullan; St Andrews, Mr D Johnston. Wardens at St. John’s, Messrs. J. McMullan, T. Morrison.

Finally on the 28th of October, 1939 the church was ready for consecration.

The following order of service for the consecration was published by The Herald, Lisburn:

Consecration of St Aidan’s Church, Glenavy
By the
Right Rev. The Lord Bishop of the Diocese
On Saturday, 28th October 1939
At 2.45 p.m.

Parish of Glenavy
Diocese of Connor

Architects – Messrs. H. Seaver, 154, Malone Road and D. W. Boyd, 43, Scottish Provident Buildings, Belfast
Contractors – Messrs. Cairns Bros., Belfast
Vicar – Rev. W.J. Chambers
Curate – Rev. J B Fisher, B.A.
Churchwardens – Messrs. W Bell and W.L. Briggs
Hon. Treasurer – Mr W. H. Johnston, Ballycessy
Hon. Secretary – Mr J Walker, Glenavy P.E. School

Preacher: The Ven. P.N. Shirley, M.A., B.D., Archdeacon of Connor


There will be Special Services on Sunday, 29th October, at 11.30 a.m.
Preacher: The Very Rev. M.F.H. Collis, B.D., Dean of Connor.
Offerings at all services for the Re-building Fund.

Harvest Thanksgiving Services on Sunday Morning, November 5th, at 11.30 a.m.
Preacher: Rev Canon J S Taylor, M.A., Rector of Lisburn Cathedral.
Offerings for Protestant Orphan Society and Overseas Missions.

Form of Service

The Bishop, attended by his Chaplains, shall be received at the principal entrance to the Church, by the Minister and other Clergy present, properly habited, and the Churchwardens with a Petition praying that he will consecrate the Church.

The Bishop receiving the Petition, shall order the same to be read.

Then the Bishop, and the clergy and others attending on him shall proceed up the nave saying as they go the Twenty-fourth Psalm; the bishop beginning, and they Clergy and others answering by verses.

Then shall follow the form of the Consecration of a Church to be found on page 272 of the Book of Common Prayer.

After this shall follow evening prayer.

Proper Psalm LXXXIV. – Quam Dilecta.

First Lesson – 1 Kings viii. V. 22 to v. 40

Magnificat. – Chant, 445 – Havergal.

Second Lesson. – Heb. X. v. 19 to v. 25

Nunc Dimittis. – Chant, 662 – Hine.

Apostles’ Creed and Prayers.

After the Third Collect will follow the Anthem:
"O taste and see" – Goss.


Hymn before the sermon, No. 256:
"All things are Thine; no gift have we."


Hymn during collection of offerings, No.255:
"Christ is made the sure Foundation."

Prayers and Benediction.

Recessional Hymn. No 424:
"The Church’s one Foundation."

Laus Deo.

The order of service also contained a summary of the history of Glenavy Parish.

The improvements carried out in 1894 included a chancel with organ chamber, vestry, choir stalls, and cathedral glass windows. Many valuable gifts were presented by the people of the parish. These were presented by the people of the parish. These were destroyed in the disastrous fire of Christmas Eve, 1938, but their memory is being perpetuated by a brass tablet in the Church as rebuilt in 1939.

The gifts to the present building include, a Memorial East Window by friends of the late J. English; Communion Table by Mrs Hamill; Communion Rails and Service Books by Miss F.E. Sefton; Silver Communion Set by Mr. And Mrs. R Gurd; a Lectern Bible by Dr. E. Downer; Oak Collecting Plates by Mr. And Mrs. A. Ferguson; Communion Linen by Mr. McClure, Lisburn; Book Markers by Ronald and Reginald Ferguson; Chancel Chairs by Mr. J. Haire, Sister, and Brothers; Alms Dish by Mrs. H. Watson and family; Brass Book Stand by the Girls’ Club; Oak Collecting Plates by Mr. D Steele.

Also subscriptions in cash towards the rebuilding fund amounting to £340.

The Electric Two-Manual Organ was supplied by Messrs. Evans and Barr of Belfast.

Communion Table

Glenavy Parish Church Communion Table and Oak Panelling.
Photograph courtesy of Northern Whig and Belfast Post
30th October, 1939

The local press provided reporting on the day’s events:

Extract from The Belfast News Letter 28th October 1939, reproduced by kind permission of the Belfast News Letter.

Glenavy Parish Church Rebuilt

St. Aidan’s Parish Church, Glenavy, which was gutted by fire on Christmas Eve, 1938, has been reconstructed and will be reopened and consecrated this afternoon. The church which was burnt dated from 1812. It replaced an older building, and it is known that the site has been occupied by a church for a very long time. The 1812 church was a handsome building, with a tower and a lynch gate dating from 1890.

The architect responsible for the reconstruction is Mr D.W. Boyd, M.R.I.A.I., of Scottish Provident Building, Belfast. Though the stone walls of the church remained standing after the fire, the heat was so great that it destroyed the stone dressings and tracery of the windows. All damaged stone has been cut out and replaced by York Stone. The new roof is slated and carried on pitch fine principals, stained dark. The new oak pews are of oak, and the nave has an oak floor. The chancel floor is laid in marble.

One part of the old church has not been restored – the gallery. The old hot water heating system has been replaced by an installation of tubular electric heaters.

Two panels of cast bronze have been erected in the porch. One is a war memorial – relating to the war of 1914-18 – containing 68 names. The other is something unusual – a memorial to the memorials and gifts which were destroyed in the fire.

These included the east window, pulpit, lectern, communion set, mosaic reredos, chancel tiling, alms dish, etc. The old east window was erected by a Mr. Joseph English, in memory of his wife and son, and it has been replaced in the new building by his daughter. One of the old memorials was to Richard Latimer, a former Governor of Jamaica, and another to Archdeacon Watson, who was the vicar of the parish from 1886 until 1896.

The Contractors

The general contractors were Messrs. Cairns Bros., of Candahar Street, Ormeau Road, Belfast. The work has been completed in good time and to the satisfaction of all concerned, careful attention having been given to every detail.

Wrought Stone

The wrought stone required in the reconstruction was supplied by Messrs. Blaney & Bowman, Beersbridge Road, Belfast. The firm have a reputation for prompt deliveries and strict attention to architects’ and builders’ requirements. One of their recent contracts was the Portland stone and marble for the new branch of the Bank of Ireland in Dublin.

Furniture and Marble Floors

The oak furniture for chancel and sanctuary, including pulpit, reading desks and lectern, choir stalls, holy table and panelling, also the stone font, memorial tablets in cast bronze, and chancel and sanctuary floors and steps in marble, were all carried out by Messrs. Purdy & Millard, Belfast, and executed in their own workshops.

The following extract is taken from "Aid to the Book of Common Prayer – Its origin and History and other information" by Richard A. Rogers.

Reredos – A carved screen at the back of the Holy Table.

The following memorial is to be found mounted on the wall in the porch of the Parish Church:

Glenavy Church Memorial

This memorial is to be found mounted on the wall in the porch

of the Parish Church


East window by Joseph English to his wife Isabella, died
September 1883 and son Robert died February 1889.

Pulpit in memory of Joseph English died 11th March 1902.

Lectern by Mrs Alsager Nixon to their mother Harriet
Gore Pollock of Goremount, Glenavy and Alsager
in Cheshire, died September 1880.

Communion set, paten, chalice and flagon by Captain Dowglass
and his family in memory of his sister and child.

Windows to :- Dr Black: Esther Wallace by Mrs Mussen:
Arthur Gayer Finlay by Mrs Watson.


Richard Latimer former Governor of Jamaica.
Frances Whittle daughter of Richard Latimer.
Captain John Nelson Ingram.
Venerable Archdeacon Watson Vicar of Glenavy 1886 – 1896.
Dr Arthur Mussen, J.P.


Mosaic Reredos by Frances Morrow.
Chancel Tiling by Captain Dowglass.
Lectern Bible by Rev E J Smyth.
Alms dish by Rev FJ Nelson.
And many other accessories.

English Family Headstone

English Family headstone

English Family headstone

Joseph English of Crumlin
in memory of Isabella his devoted wife
who died 5th September 1883 aged 64 years,
Also of their dear children
Anna who died 7th June 1870, aged 20 years
Margaret Susan
who died 2nd August aged 23 years
Robert English M.D., M.CH.,
assistant colonial surgeon who died at Cape Coast castle, West Africa
on the 26th February 1889 aged 27 years
also his eldest son John
who died in Chicago USA 21st May 1903
aged 55 years
The above named Joseph English
died 11th March 1902 aged 79 years
Deeply regretted
Also his daughter Sarah English
died 9th March 1951 aged 89 years

"And with the Lord those angel faces smile
which I have loved long since lost a while"

Joseph English married Isabella Armstrong in 1846.

Gore Family Headstone

Gore Family Headstone

Gore Family Headstone

Harriett Gore of Goremount
died 24th July 1801 aged 61 years
William Gore
died 22nd March 1810 aged 65 years
William Gore
died 2nd March 1830 aged 65 years
Anna Gore
died 1st April 1869 aged 83 years
Harriette Gore
died 18th September 1880 aged 61 years
widow of Henry Alsager Pollock
Goremount and Alsager in Cheshire
Kathleen Margaret Alsager Nixon
died 9th May 1931 aged 71 years
widow of James Hamilton Fitzgerald Nixon
of Mount Prospect, County Cavan
and youngest daughter of Henry Alsager Pollock
of Goremount and Alsager

The writing on the headstone has worn and fallen off in parts. It appears that the original inscription has been put onto
another memorial stone, which is now broken and flat on top of the grave.

Dowglass Family Headstone

Dowglass Family Headstone

Dowglass Family Headstone

to the memory of
Ellen Dowglass
the beloved sister of
George Dowglass
of Gobrana
who died 12th November 1862
aged 30 years
Louisa Sarah the beloved daughter of the above
who was born on the 18th August 1861
and died on the 6th May 1864
also his second daughter
Ellen born 22nd December 1863
died 16th April 1873
aged 9 years and 3 months

For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him 1st Thess, IV Chap,14 verse

(this is a flat memorial)

Ingram Family Headstone

Ingram Family Headstone

Ingram Family Headstone

to the memory of
Captain John Nelson Ingram
late of HM’s 1st Royal Regt
who departed this life
on the 4th day of July 1841
in his 66th year of his age
As a soldier
he was brave and generous
as a friend
faithful and sincere
and to the poor
a kind and liberal benefactor
This monument has been erected
by a few friends
as a token of the gratitude
for his magnificent bequests
to the parish of Glenavy and Ballinderry

Easter Vestry – 1940

The following extract is from The Lisburn Herald, Saturday April 6, 1940.

St. Aidan’s Glenavy – Easter vestries.

Rev. W.J. Chambers (vicar) presided at the Easter Vestry meeting of St. Aidan’s Parish, Glenavy.

The Chairman, in the course of his address, gave a review of the events of the past year, especially mentioning the rebuilding of the parish church and its opening and consecration on 28th October, 1939. When all accounts were paid, and discounts allowed, there was only a debt of £37 on the parish. “This very small debt,” he said, "will give an opportunity to some parisioners who have not yet subscribed to our rebuilding fund, and so allow us to keep up our reputation of being free of all debt."

Appointments :- Churchwardens, Messrs W. Bell (vicar’s); W.L. Briggs (people’s); Select Vestry, Miss English, Miss McLaughlin, Mrs. J. Walker; Messrs W.H. Johnston, E. Cormican, A. Ferguson and J. Walker; Hon treas., Mr. W.H. Johnson; hon sec., Mr. J. Walker; sidesmen, Messrs D. Steele and W. Watson; wardens for St. John’s, Messrs. J. McMullan and T. Morrison; for St. Andrew’s, Messrs. D. Johnston and D. Mairs, J.P.

Easter Vestries

The Lisburn Herald 26th April 1941


The Rev. W. J. Chambers presided at the Easter Vestry of Glenavy parish. Appointments:- Rector’s Churchwarden. Mr W. Bell; people’s churchwarden, Mr. R. Robinson: select vestry, Miss English, Miss McLaughlin, Mrs J Walker, Messrs G. Johnston, J.E. Morgan, A. Ferguson, J. Walker, W.H. Johnston, W.J. Bell, W. Leslie, J. Mairs, J. Johnston, Wardens for St. John’s J. McMullan, T. Morrison; St. Andrew’s, D. Johnston, D. Mairs, J.P.; hon. Secretary. J. Walker; hon. Treasurer, W.H. Johnston.

The Lisburn Standard Friday April 17 1942


The Rev W J Chambers rector presided. Appointments:- Churchwardens – Messrs W Bell (rector’s), R Robinson (people’s); St John’s J McMullan and T Morrison; St Andrew’s D Mairs JP., and D Johnston; parochial nominators – D Mairs JP, T Morrison, J Walker; supplemental – W H Johnston, D Johnston, J McMullan; synods men – D Johnston, G Johnston, T Morrison, R Robinson; select vestry – W J Bell, W H Johnston, Joe Johnston, W Leslie, James Mairs, J E Morgan, G Johnston, R Wilson,jun,. J Walker, Miss English, Miss McLaughlin, Mrs J Walker, treasurer – Mr W H Johnson, secretary – Mr J Walker.

Organist Honoured

The Lisburn Herald Saturday Jan 16th 1943

Glenavy Parish
Organist Honoured by Choir

The choir of Glenavy Parish Church were given a social evening by the Select Vestry in the Parish Hall. The Rev. W J Chambers (vicar) and Rev. R I Hanlon, BA. (curate) were present. Games were played, and there was a short programme to which the following contributed – Misses Meta Harbinson and P Walker, Rev Hanlon, Messrs H Richardson, R Wilson and J Walker.

During an interval, Mr Richardson, on behalf of the clergy and choir, presented the organist Mr J Walker, with a silver mounted baton, which was suitably inscribed.

A very enjoyable evening was brought to a close with the singing of the National Anthem.

Easter Vestries

The Lisburn Herald Saturday May 8th 1943

Easter Vestries
Glenavy Parish

Rev W J Chambers (vicar) presided at the annual general vestry meeting of Glenavy Parish on Thursday of last week, and in the course of his address stated that the attendance at the various services showed no signs of slackening, about 100 Communicants attending on Easter Day. The financial side of growth, for having paid their way, they were in the happy position of having a substantial balance to credit. They owed a great debt of gratitude to the hon. Treas, Mr W Johnston, for the hard work entailed in preparing the statement of accounts.

The following appointments were made: Churchwardens, Mr W Bell (vicar’s) Mr R Robinson (peoples), select vestry Miss English, Miss McLaughlin, Mrs J Walker, Messrs W H Johnston, G Johnston, Joe Johnston, W J Bell, J E Morgan, A Ferguson, R Wilson,jun., Jns Mairs, D Mairs, JP, D Johnston, J Walker; Hon Sec Mr J Walker, Hon Treas Mr W H Johnston. Wardens for St John’s Messrs J McMullan, T Morrison; St Andrew’s, Messrs D Johnston, D Mairs JP, sidesmen (parish church), Messrs W Watson, D Steele; (St Johns) Messrs E Cormican, W Frazer.

Choir Member Honoured

The Lisburn Herald Saturday July 17 1943

Glenavy Parish Church
Member of Choir Honoured

On Wednesday of last week, 7th inst, Mrs Wm. Moore (formerly Miss Peggy Walker) and her husband were the guests of the clergy and choir members of Glenavy Parish Church at a presentation party organised by the choir. The Parish Hall was tastefully decorated for the occasion.

After tea, the Rev W J Chambers in the course of his address, spoke very appreciatively of Mrs Moore’s services to the choir for a great many years and hoped she would have pleasant memories of her past associations with the church. Rev R I Hanlon BA also referred to Mrs Moore’s musical abilities and added his personal good wishes for all those present.
Mrs Moore, returning thanks, said she appreciated very much the great honour conferred on her, and she would long remember her happy associations with the choir.

Mr J Walker expressed thanks. The proceedings concluded with a short programme to which the following contributed: Miss Meta Steele, Rev. Hanlon and Mr Robt. Wilson.

Church Missionary Society, Young People’s Union

Church Missionary Society, Young People's Union

Church Missionary Society, Young People’s Union, Glenavy dated 1st May 1942

The Lych Gate, Glenavy Parish Church

The following is an extract from the Belfast News Letter – 30th July 1943. Reproduced by kind permission of the Belfast News Letter.

The Lord Bishop of Down will, on Sunday morning next, dedicate a Lynch Gate at Glenavy, County Antrim, in memory of Archdeacon Charles Watson (former rector of the parish) and his wife and her brothers. Included in the memorial is the name of Sergeant – Pilot Colin Vernon Finlay, killed in action over Malta in May of last year. The Lych Gate is being erected by relatives and friends of the persons whose names it will bear. It will be remembered that St. Aidan’s Church, Glenavy, was destroyed by fire on Christmas morning, 1938. It was rebuilt in 1939.

The following extract is taken from "Aid to the Book of Common Prayer – Its origin and History and other information" by Richard A. Rogers.

Lych Gate means the gate of the dead, from lich, "a dead body", originally intended for the accommodation of mourners while waiting for the arrival of the clergy and procession from the church at funerals.

The following plaque is mounted on the inside of the Lynch Gate:

Glenavy Lych Gate

To the glory of God and in loving memory of

Archdeacon Charles Watson, and his wife Jane

and of her brothers

William Laird Finlay and Howard Finlay

Arthur Gayer Finlay

And of the latter’s grandson

Sergeant Pilot Colin Vernon Finlay

killed in action Malta 14th March 1942

The Lynch gate is erected by their relatives and friends

The following extract is from The Lisburn Herald and Antrim and Down Advertiser – Saturday August 7 1943

Glenavy Parish
New Lych Gate Dedicated

A large congregation gathered in St Aidan’s Parish Church, Glenavy, last Sunday on the occasion of the dedication by the Lord Bishop of Down and Connor and Dromore, of the lych gate which has been erected by relatives and friends to the memory of Archdeacon Charles Watson, B.A., vicar of the Parish of Glenavy from 1885 to 1897, and to his wife, Jane, her three brothers (William Laird Finlay, Howard Finlay and Arthur Gayer Finlay) and the grandson of the last-named Sergeant-Pilot Colin Vernon Finlay, who was killed in action over Malta on May 13, 1942. The former lych gate was destroyed by trees during a storm some years ago.

Sunday’s service was conducted by the Vicar of Glenavy, Rev W J Chambers, assisted by Rev R I Hanlon, B.A., curate, Rev J R McDonald, MA, who acted as Bishop’s chaplain, read the lesson.

Archdeacon Charles Watson was the author of a valuable work on the history of the parish "Glenavy past and present".

The late Mrs Jane Watson did not lose interest in the parish up to the time of her death in 1940. She wrote to the present vicar on her 90th birthday enclosing a substantial cheque towards the rebuilding of St Aidan’s Church after the disastrous fire of Christmas Eve, 1938.

Undated newspaper cutting, source presently unknown:

Church of The Dwarf

St. Aidan’s, Glenavy, whose new lych gate was dedicated on Sunday, is one of Ireland’s most historic and picturesque churches. A former vicar, Archdeacon Watson, to whom the lych gate is principally dedicated, was the recognised authority of his day on Glenavy, ancient and modern, and wrote an interesting book called "Glenavy, Past and Present".

The name Glenavy, meaning Church of the Dwarf, appears differently in early documents, for example, Lenavy, Lunavy, Lynavy, and Lanavy. The name first appeared in 1661 in the Triennial Visitation Book, and was then written Glenaury. Its ancient Rectory belonged to the Abbot of Bangor prior to the dissolution of the monasteries.

Archdeacon Watson’s wife retained her interest and affection for the old parish until her death a few years ago. She was greatly distressed when the church was burned in 1938, and on her 90th birthday sent the vicar a handsome cheque towards its restoration.

Undated newspaper cutting, source presently unknown:

Bishop and the Lych Gate
Glenavy Dedication

Prior to the morning service at Glenavy Parish Church, near Crumlin, on Sunday, the Bishop of Down (Dr. Chas. King Irwin) dedicated a lych gate in the churchyard. It has been erected by relatives and friends to the memory of Archdeacon Charles Watson, vicar of the parish from 1885 to 1897; to his wife, Jane; her three brothers, Wm. Laird Finlay, Howard Finlay, and Arthur Gayer Finlay, Sergt.-Pilot Colin Vernon Finlay, who was killed in action over Malta in 1942.

There was a large attendance of parishioners at the ceremony.

Preaching at morning service the Bishop expressed the pleasure it gave him to dedicate the lych gate to the memory of a former incumbent. It was a pretty addition to that very beautiful and beautifully kept church.

"But don’t let us look on this lych gate as an ornamental approach to the church nor yet merely as a memorial to those who have gone," said the Bishop. "Let it speak to us rather a lesson every Sunday when we come here. Lych gates are not very common in this country, but they have a significant history. They were intended originally as a place where the mourners might rest the coffins in shelter while waiting for the clergyman to come to meet them. So a lych gate is connected with the burial of the dead in Christ and the mere fact that it is such a gate suggests to us the great thought that we too in time shall have to pass through the graven gate of death to go to our joyful resurrection. Let it, therefore, tell each of us as we enter beneath it that we have to prepare and make ready to meet our God."

The service was conducted by the vicar (Rev. W.J. Chambers), assisted by Rev. R.J. Hanlon. B.A. (curate), and Rev. J.R. McDonald, M.A., rector of St. Matthew’s, Shankill, who acted as Bishop’s chaplain.

Undated paper cutting:

Dedication of the memorial lych gate at St Aidan’s Parish Church, Glenavy – Rev. R I. Hanlon, Curate; Rev. W.J. Chambers, Vicar; Dr. King Irwin, bishop of Down, and Rev. J.K. McDonald, M.A.

Glenavy River eroding

The Lisburn Herald, 30 October 1943

Lisburn Rural Council notes:
Glenavy River:

Mr J Walker, secretary of the Select Vestry of Glenavy Parish Church wrote stating that the river which passed the Parish Hall had got out of its proper bed and was wearing away the bank in front of the hall. He suggested that the proper channel be cleaned. The matter was referred to the County Surveyor for attention.


The Lisburn Herald, Saturday 18 December 1943

Recital at Glenavy
Excerpts from "Messiah"

An organ and vocal recital took place in Glenavy Parish Church last Saturday, when the vocal items were excerpts from Handel’s Messiah.

The solos were taken by Mrs S Stockman LGSM (contralto), Miss M Houston (soprano) , Mr N Thompson (tenor) and Mr S Alcorn (bass). Glenavy Parish Church and St Johns (Crumlin) choirs, assisted by Lambeg Parish Church Choir, rendered four choruses:- "And the glory of the Lord," "O Thou that tallest," "Worthy is the Lamb," and "Hallelujah", Handel’s organ concerto (10th movement) was played by the Rev. W.J. Parr M.A. rector of Lambeg, and Rev. R.I. Hanlon, B.A., curate of Glenavy, played te prelude. "May the grace of God our Saviour" (arranged by Anderson), also "Lift up your heads" (Guillemont). Revs Parr and Hanlon acted as accompanists to the solos, and Mr J Walker was organist.

Rev W J Chambers, Vicar, conducted the devotional part of the service and announced the various items.

Altogether the service was most inspiring, and was carried out in a highly creditable manner, especially by choirs, which up to recently, would not have attempted such high class music as Handel’s Messiah.

Parish Magazine

An example of the Parish magazine dated August 1945, Volume 14 no. 164. It was priced at twopence.

Parish Magazine dated August 1945

Parish Magazine dated August 1945

Easter Vestry

The Lisburn Standard Friday May 3 1946


Rev W.J. Chambers presided. Appointments:- Churchwardens: Vicar’s Mr G E Ingram; People’s Mr G Johnston; select vestry – Mrs D McCullough, Mrs J Walker, Messrs J H Price, J E Morgan, D Mairs JP, D Johnston, J Johnston, W Moore, WH Johnston, A Ferguson, W J Bell, J Walker; sidesmen – Parish Church Messrs D Steele, J Ferguson, WJ Christie, St John’s Messrs T Morrison, J McMullan,; St Andrew’s Messrs D Mairs JP, D Johnston, C Johnston, Hon Secretary Mr J Walker; Hon Treasurer Mr W H Johnston.

A brief history

The following extract is from the Lisburn Herald dated 3rd April 1948.

At Glenavy there was a church founded bt St. Patrick. The priest in charge was Nanus Angelus, a man of very small stature, and the church became known as the "Church of the Dwarf." (LannAbbhaich or G’Lann-Avaich) where three daughters of St. Comgall are reputed to have been buried. This church also administered to Camlin and Tullyrusk, and it, or a successive building, existed in 1306. In 1622 Conway brought over from Wales, the Rev. Meredith Gwyllim as rector of the parishes of Glenavy, Ballinderry and Magheragall. A new church 58 ft., by 20 ft., to seat 300 persons, was erected at Glenavy in 1644, this church receiving the gift of a silver chalice from the Duke of Schomberg in 1689. The present church of Glenavy, largely financed by the Marquess of Hertford, was completed in 1814, and the church at Magheragall was rebuilt in 1830 to replace the old church, which was near Brookhill.

Glenavy Parish Church Website

T & W Ide Studios

An undated eight page catalogue by T & W Ide Studios, artists in Stained Glass, Tiles, Mosaics and Decoration, address: 75 & 76 Wells Street, Oxford Street, London. Glenavy Church is listed as one of the previous clients of this company.

Church History

The following is an extract from the 1961 Rural Deanery publication.

We are fortunate in having in our possession plenty of material relevant to the long history of our Parish. In 1814 the Revd. Edward Cupples produced "A statistical account of the Parish of Glenavy" and in 1892 the Revd. Charles Watson’s "Glenavy Past and Present" was published. As well as the foregoing we have Parish records going back to the year 1707, with a wealth of information about the social conditions from that time.

Bishop Wm. Reeves in "Ecclesiastical Antiquities" states that the Parish of Glenavy dates from the time of Saint Patrick, who began to build a church here, the spot being well known as Lettir-Phadruic, which means "site of Patrick." This Church he gave in charge to one, Daniel Nanus Angelus, i.e., Anugelic Dwarf, from whom it received the name LannAbhaic (Church of the Dwarf). This name soon came to be pronounced &Lannaway" and in 1661 is found as Glenaway-hence Glenavy. In the martvtology of Donegal, which is borrowed from the more ancient Calendar of Marianus, we find at the day- Nov. VI, Aidan son of Colga of Lann-Abhaic;" and so we conclude that the old church was dedicated to Saint Aidan, who must be distinguished from Aidan of Lindisfarne who was son of Lugar. History also records that three sisters of Saint Comgall, friend of St. Columba, founder of the celebrated monastery of Bangor, Co. Down, was buried here.

Prior to the dissolution of monasteries, the Rectory of Glenavy was appropriate to the great Abbey of Bangor. After the dissolution it was granted to Sir James Hamilton in the patent giving him Killultagh and thus became a Vicarage. After him it passed to Sir Fulke Conway; a Welsh Knight, who presented the living to the Revd. Meredith Gwyllim in 1622. To this Gwyllim were also given the Parishes of Ballinderry and Magheragall, to all of which he was inducted on June 7th, 1624. The Conway family held the territories of Killultagh until 1683, when they passed to the Seymour’s, the heirs receiving the title of Marquis of Hertford. On the death of the 4th Marquis in 1870 the property passed to Sir Richard Wallace, who died in 1890, after which most of the farms were purchased by the tenants.

From the 6th century there is no mention of Glenavy until 1306 when under the "Crusade Tax" we find "The Church of Lannaway with the Chapel 10/- tenth 12d." Bishop Reeves believes the Chapel mentioned to be on Rams Island. Again a gap until 1622 when the Revd. Meredith Gwyllim became Vicar. The earliest church building of which we have any knowledge is the new church built in 1644, which had neither tower nor spire. It had a small gallery and, sittings for 300. Seemingly because it was hidden in deep forest it was spared the fate of Camlin and Tullyrusk, both of which were ravaged by the armies of James II. We still retain an interesting relic of those days which the officers of a detachment of Duke Schomberg’s army presented to the Church in consideration of the kindness shown to them when quartered in Glenavy. It is a silver chalice and paten bearing the inscription, "This plate was given to ye Church of Glenavy by the officers of ye Queen’s Regmt. of Horse, commanded by ye Honble, Major General Sir John Lanier, in the year 1690. In honorem Ecclesiae Anglicanae." This regiment fought at the Boyne, 1690, and Aughrim, 1691. Another gift, expressive of appreciation in our own generation, is inscribed "This Chalice, copy of that in York Minister dated 1340, was the gift of the officers and men of 560 Searchlight Battery, Royal Artillery under the command of Major H, A. Johnston, R.A., stationed at Glenavy, 1941."

An addition to the west end of the Church was made in 1717, but in 1812 it was demolished and the foundations of a new one laid. This building, with tower and spire, was open for worship in 1814 and the cost was £3,060. Extensive repairs costing £800 were carried out in 1855 and the transept added in 1863 costing £440. In 1890 a Lynch-gate was erected at the entrance to the graveyard "To the Glory of God and in loving memory of Wm. Laird Finlay and Howard Finlay," who were brothers of Mrs. Watson, wife of the Vicar. The tragic fire of Christmas, 1938, left only the walls and tower of the Parish Church standing, but within a year the congregation were worshipping under a new roof, surrounded by new furnishings but within the same old hallowed walls. The cost, £10,000. The year 1957 witnessed extensive -repairs to the church tower, and 1959 witnessed an extension to the parish churchyard and the car park. A vicarage was built for the Parish in 1819, but having outlived its usefulness is being succeeded by a modern building at present in course of construction. The Parish also possesses a serviceable Curate’s residence purchased from Dr. Mussen in 1886.

At one time the Moravians flourished in Glenavy. In 1750 John Cennick, one of Wesley’s preachers who joined the Moravians in 1745 and who wrote such well known hymns as "Lo ! He comes;" "Brethren let us join to bless," "Children of the Heavenly King," preached to thousands in a field at Glenavy. In 1751 he had a chapel and dwelling house erected, and though we read that at the dedication of the chapel, 800 people were present and crowds outside, there is to-day no trace of the chapel and no Moravian adherent left.

As we stated earlier the old church of Crumlin was destroyed by the army of James II and the parish lost its identity, coming under the wing of Glenavy. The Crumlin people attended Glenavy Parish Church using a right of way to the stepping stones across the river into the churchyard. From about 1850 a Sunday School and afternoon service were held in Crumlin Courthouse, but with the turn of the century thoughts turned towards the erection of an adequate place of worship to serve the Crumlin community. Under the leadership of the then Vicar, the Revd. J. M. Boyle Glover, the present St. John’s Church was built, and consecrated on Saturday, September 12th, 1903. The Jubilee of: St. John’s Church was celebrated’ by a Special Service on Saturday, 12th, 1953. A site has been purchased in Crumlin and we look forward to the day when a Hall will be built to meet the needs of the district.

The other Church in the Parish is St. Andrew’s, Tunny, on the shores of Lough Neagh, almost five miles from Glenavy. It was dedicated as a chapel-of-ease and opened for worship on 25th March, 1855. Improvements in 1893 included the addition of a chancel, lancet windows and a heating system. For the, centenary celebrations in 1955 the church was completely renovated and. redecorated within and without, a calor gas lighting system installed, windows replaced and many gifts presented. The erection of a bell-tower over the porch and vestry marked the most striking change in the appearance of the church.The bell was a gift from Castle Connell Parish from the disused church at O’Brien’s Bridge, Co. Limerick, Diocese of Killaloe.

The old Parish of Tullyrusk which, with Glenavy and Camlin, formed the Glenavy Union, has completely lost its individuality. The churchyard at Tullyrusk contains the foundations of the church destroyed towards the. end of the 17th century. In 1886 a large area of Tullyrusk was ceded by Glenavy to form the new Parish of Stoneyford.

To conclude this brief historical sketch of the Parish mention must be made of two places of outstanding interest.

The Crew was named in ancient times "Craebh-tulcha," which means "the spreading tree of the hill." It was so called from a sacred tree under which the Kings of Ulidia were crowned. The great stone on which the ceremony was performed is still there. Here many fierce battles took place and here in 1005 Brian Boru and his Munster men camped. In 1099 the sacred tree was cut down as the final insult by a victorious army. In 1814 a school was built at the Crew, though as such it has long ceased to exist. This building or its successor, was used jointly by Crew L.O.L., and the Parish until 1959, when the ‘Lodge members provided a fine new Hall for their own use. Weekly Sunday School and a Monthly Mission Service are still held in the old Hall.

The final place of note in the Parish is Rams Island in Lough Neagh, distant about 1½ miles from the Glenavy shore. Rams Island is chiefly interesting for its ancient Irish Round Tower, in a state of good preservation. The tower, divided into three stories; is 43 feet high, 30 feet 5 inches in circumference, and the walls are 2 feet eight inches thick.As to its date of building or subsequent history we have no knowledge.

The following are extracts from the 1970 Annual Report for the Parish of Glenavy

St. Aidan’s: In our last Report the name of Mr. F. Hayden Richardson appeared as having generously provided a silver font ewer to replace the original which was stolen some time ago. On 18th October he was called into the immediate presence of his Lord. In 43 years he was very seldom absent from his seat in the choir. We thank God upon every remembrance of him.

At the end of the year the Select Vestry, with great regret, accepted the resignation of Mr. Douglas Harbinson as Sexton.

The Curatage: During the year the transaction regarding the sale of the Curatage was completed. We welcome, not only as owners, but also as parishioners, Mr. And Mrs. T. Malcom and family.

The following names were listed as Parochial Benefactors in 1967 and 1970

Miss M. Stewart
Joseph English
John Oakman
Sir J.M. Scott
Capt. John Nelson Ingram
Miss J. Durham
W. Gregory
Allen Bell
W.J. Phillips
Mrs. J.A.Patterson
W.H.N. Downer
Dr. Mussen
William Ingram
John Bullick
S. Green
Mrs. J.R. Sloan
James Kirkpatrick
William Davison
Miss Mary Johnston
Miss Jane A. Kirkpatrick
Miss Margaret Ferris
David Mairs
Frederick W. Reid
Miss Rose Ann Bell
Mrs. S.J. Cooley
Mrs. M. Ross
Andrew Bell
Mrs. C. Henessy
Mrs. A. Ross
Mrs. J. Bickerstaffe
T.W. Doyle

 Glenavy Parish Church, 1961

Glenavy Parish Church, 1961

Memorial Service – W. Bro Joseph Magowan

The following is an extract from The Ulster Star dated 28th October 1967 and appears with permission of The Ulster Star.

Glenavy District L.O.L. No.4
Memorial Service
for the late
W. Bro. Joseph Magowan
(W.D.M. 1947 – 1967)
in Glenavy Parish Church
Sunday, 5th November, at 3 p.m.
Brethren to assemble at Glenavy Protestant Hall at 2.45.
Visiting Brethren Welcome.

Averts from Glenavy Parish Magazine – Feb 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Advert from Glenavy Parish Magazine February 1968

Mr James Walker

Article: Taken from the Antrim Guardian 25th October 1974.

Mr and Mrs James Walker, Glenavy 1974

Mr and Mrs James Walker, Glenavy 1974

Music and school teaching would appear to have had a special appeal in the case of Mr. James Walker, of 15 Gobrana Road, Glenavy, Crumlin.

A pianist from the age of twelve, he secured a teaching post at Castlerea, Co. Roscommon, in the year 1906, when he also became organist of the local parish church.

Similar appointments were subsequently undertaken at Leckpatrick, Strabane, and at Crom, in Co. Fermanagh.

Fort-eight years ago Mr. Walker moved to Glenavy as principal of the local school and of course the job of organist was "thrown in."

Although Mr. Walker has since retired from the teaching profession, he is still the parish organist and "officiates" at morning and evening services on Sundays,
"I enjoy church music and I wouldn’t miss a service. In fact, I have rarely been absent during the past 48 years in Glenavy," he stated.

Mr. Walker, however, had an extra task in the church – he was on the select vestry for all those years and recently received a gift to mark his faithful service. He pioneered the choral festival in Lisburn Rural Deanery and for several years was conductor.

Even after 68 years as a church organist, Mr. Walker has no plans for retiring.

As on parishioner said: "The church – and the music – wouldn’t be the same without him."

Mr. Walker, wearing his robes, is pictured outside the church with Mrs. Walker.

New Vicarage

The following extract is from Parish of Glenavy Year Book 1981.

The Vicarage. The third project (since the turn of the century) was the building of a new Vicarage in 1960/61 when the Rev.A.J.E. Campbell, M.A. was in office.

Glenavy Parish Church Postcard

A 20th century postcard depicting Glenavy Parish Church

A 20th century postcard depicting Glenavy Parish Church

Old Sunday School House

The following extracts are from Parish of Glenavy Year Book 1981.

Old Sunday School House

It was largely due to the demand created by the birth, rejuvenation or growth of Youth Organisations in the Parish that the decision was taken to build a new Parish Hall. Hitherto the Church Lads’ Brigade, Girls’ Brigade and Youth Club had met in the Protestant Hall, the Methodist Church Hall, the "Sunday-School" and Glenavy Primary School.

It is difficult to establish the exact history of the "Sunday-School" because it is reckoned to be almost 200 years old. A search of the Parish records around that time revealed that in the year 1771 the Vestry members agreed expenditure of £2.5.6. "to making out a School-house." Although it is not identified by reference to the town land in which it is situated it seems likely that this relates to the original building adjacent to the Church entrance. Other schools built around that period were situated in "Ballydonaghy", "Lane Ends" (Thomas Ingram’s land) and "Boadore" (Budore?) (Wm. McClure’s land) and the remarkable thing is that the cost in each case was £2.5.6. Or a multiple of that sum e.g. £4.11.0.!

The following entry appears in the Vestry minutes dated 5th February, 1931, "The Vestry expressed their approval of the alterations in the Old Sunday School House, making it into a Parish Hall and considered it to be a useful asset to the Parish of Glenavy."

Parish Youth Organisations

The 288th N.I. Company of the Girls’ Brigade which was formed in 1977 really had its roots in the 1st Glenavy Company of the Girls’ Life Brigade. The need for such an organisation was seen by the Rev.W.J. Carson who was the Methodist Minister in Glenavy in 1942. In 1943, Miss Adeline W. McKeown became Captain of the Company, a post which she held for 29 years, by which time the Girls’ Life Brigade had been incorporated into the Girls’ Brigade. At the end of the 1972 season the Company was compelled to close, but by 1977 there were sufficient Officers to re-instate the Company, this time under the auspices of Glenavy Parish.

Church Lads’ Brigade

The first Captain of the C.L.B. was Mr. Hugh Totten and when he started the Company he was also Captain of Ballinderry C.L.B. He was later joined by Officers from Christ Church, Lisburn, and after a number of years, during which young men from Glenavy Parish were being trained, the leadership of the Company was transferred.

Youth Club

The Youth Club was formed when the Rev. St. G.C.H. Lundy was Incumbent and the leader was the Rev. J.S. Martin (Curate). After his departure, a Committee of young lay people was made responsible for its operation and over the years the Club has grown steadily in numbers and influence.

Parish Hall

The following extract is from Parish of Glenavy Year Book 1981.

Glenavy Parish hall was opened and dedicated on 6th June 1981.

Some Facts about the Parish Hall:

The design follows closely plans drwwn by Mr. David Gilmore of Buildind Design Services, Newtownards.

The hall is "timber-framed" – a method of building which dates back at least to the 17th century and is widely used in the United States, Canada and Scandinavia.

The construction utilises a framework of fine quality, preservative – treated timber, additionally strengthened by a sheet material such as ply-wood. This framework is covered on the inside with plasterboard which hold a thick layer of fibre-glass insulation in place. The external finish is an attractive combination of charcoal grey facing bricks and concrete blocks coated with "wash-perle", a proprietary finish which is water-proof, but still allows the wall to "breathe" and is guaranteed not to crack.

The roof is felted, lathed and tiled and the ceiling in the main hall is "suspended". The walls are cavity type and this, coupled with the extensive use of insulating material, means that heat retention is two to six times better than in a traditionally built structure.

Window-frames and external doors are made from best quality mahogany and the floor in the entrance hall and main hall is first-grade maple.

The main hall dimensions are 60’x32′ overall and in addition to the kitchen and cloakrooms there is a downstairs committee room (20’x20′) and an upstairs room (20’x18′). Storage space is provided on either side of the upstairs room and also under the stage.

Thanks to an immense amount of voluntary labour the total cost of the hall (excluding extension of the car park” has been kept to approximately £40,000 and the generosity of parishioners, coupled with good "house-keeping", has ensured that no outside borrowing was necessary.

Sunday School Prizes

Sunday School Prize

Sunday School Prize

This inscription appears a book titled "Annals of the poor" by Rev. Leigh Richmond, M.A. A new edition, enlarged and illustrated. Published by The Religious Tract Society.

The inscription reads:

For Good Attendance, by the
Rev. R. Johnson Smyth
1st February, 1871.

Sunday School Prize, 1873

Sunday School Prize, 1873

This inscription appeared inside a book titled "The Life of Luther" published by the Religious Tract Society.

The inscription reads:


as a reward for regular
attendance at Glenavy
Church Sunday School
from his minister and
Charles Wm. Harding
March 1873.

Sunday School Prize, 1874

Sunday School Prize, 1874

This inscription is inside a book titled "Sea Sketches about ships and sailors" published by Religious Tract Society

The inscription reads:


Revd. E. Johnson Smyth
April 1874

Parochial Officers

The following extract is from Parish of Glenavy Year Book 1981.

Parochial Officers – 1880

Vicar: Rev. E. Johnston – Smyth

Vicar’s Churchwarden: Capt. Dowglass

People’s Churchwarden: Mr. James Smyth

Select Vestry:

Joseph English, Wm. Fitzgerald, Robert Jebb, Dr. A. Mussen, James Lorimer, J.G. Oakman, Wm. Wheeler, John Wickliffe, Jonathan Peel, James Ballance, Jn., John Corken, Lucas Waring.

Parochial Officers – 1931

Vicar: Rev.R.R.Muir, B.A.

Vicar’s Churchwarden: Mr. George Evans

People’s Churchwarden: Mr. A. Ferguson

Select Vestry:

J.Addis, J.H. Haslett, S.Johnston, E. Totten, J. Thompson, T. Farr, D.Mairs, J.P., D. Johnston, F.C. Martin, J. Higginson, J. McMullan, J, Walker.

Parochial Nominators: Ed. Johnston, Geo. Evans, Jas. McMullan

Diocesan Synodsmen: Jas. Thompson, J. Walker

Jonathon Peel Headstone

Jonathon Peel Headstone

Confirmation Photograph

Confirmation Photo

I was told this was a confirmation photograph and Bishop Grierson is in the photograph. Bishop Charles Thornton Primrose Grierson (1857 – 1935) was Bishop of Down, Connor and Dromore between the years 1919 – 1934

Memorials of the Dead

The following extract is from a book titled "Memorials of the Dead" printed in the early 20th century.

Parish of Glenavy, including Camlin and Tullyrusk.

Glenavy church built in 1812 cost £450 according to Erck; but Mr. Ewart gives the date of consecration 1814, and the cost £1,680 – a wide difference from Erck, who gives the date of the glebe-house as 1819 and the cost £800.

The following notes are taken from Mr. Ewart’s handbook in 1886:-

Incumbent – Revd. Chas. Watson, A.M. ind. 1885.
Curate – Revd. William Munce, M.A. appd.1885.

This parish was formerly called Lynavy, or the "Glen of the River"; it is bounded on the west by Lough Reagh.

The date of the union of the above three parishes is uncertain, but from a Regal Visitation book it appears the union existed in 1633.

The old church of Glenavy had neither tower nor spire. Its porch bore the date 1644. The wards of the key of this parish church form the initials of the Revd. Ed. Cupples, the vicar, in 1812, when the present church was built. A transept was added to it in 1863, costing £440.

The church of Camlin or Crumlin is a venerable ruin, over grown with ivy; and is situated on the verge of the parish, on a precipitous bank overhanging the river of Crumlin, being distant about quarter of a mile from that town. It is seventy-seven feet long, and twenty-three wide. Although the present floor is on a level with the adjacent grong, the original one appears to have been much beneath it; for there are arches and niches running along the walls, and the present floor rises to the top of them, at a short distance from the roof. The windows are immediately above these arches: that on the east is a long, narrow aperture. A few individuals still continue to bury in the graveyard.

There are no remarkable monuments belonging to any of these churches.

The chalice and communion-table, which is of silver, has the following inscription:-

This plate was given to ye Church of Glenavy, by the Officers of ye Honble Major- General SIR JOHN LANIER, in the yeare 1690.
In honorem Ecclesiae Anglicanae.

When Duke Schomberg was stationed at Lisburn, a detachment of his army was quartered at Glenavy, and being well treated by the inhabitants, this chalice appears to have been given in acknowledgement.

The records of the union are: a registry of baptisms, marriages, burials, and acts of vestry, in one volume, commencing in the year 1707; a registry in parchment, of baptisms and marriages commencing in the year 1813; and a book, containing the acts of vestry, commencing in the year 1814. The registry of burials is still continued in the old book of 1707. These records are kept in the church, under lock and key.

"Parish of Camlin"

The Roman Catholic chapel is a neat modern building (1816), 60 feet long by 30 wide; and is situated in the town land of Ballymacricket, within half-a-mile of the town of Glenavy. The Rev. Patrick Blaney is the priest. This chapel was built about 15 years ago by subscription; to which the Marquis of Hertford and the Protestants of the union liberally contributed.

The church of Tullyrusk stood in the town land of that name, being distant from Glenavy about three miles. There is an extensive and well-enclosed churchyard in which the Protestant dissenters and Roman Catholics chiefly bury.

Note – Mr Ewart says no part of this church now remains except the foundation. It was 62 feet long and 18 feet wide.

"Modern Church Plate"

A Communion Service of cup, flagon and paten was presented by Captain Dowglass, J.P., of Gobrana, in 1867. The flagon bears the following inscription:-

This Flagon with the Chalice and Paten was presented by Captain Dowglass of Gobrana, and his family, to the Parish of Glenavy, in memory of his sister and child.

The oldest parochial record – the Parish register – begins in 1709.

Mr Ewart says of Camlin or "Crumlin" : it has a well-kept graveyard (a rare exception to the general run of those that have come under our observation throughout Ireland -ED.), covering half an acre. The church was destroyed in the wars of James II., and the latest interesting event recorded concerning it, is that of an ordination held in it by Bishop Jeremy Taylor, in 1661, when Andrew Acton was admitted to deacon’s orders.

For a full description of these parishes, we should refer our reader to "The Story of the United Parishes of Glenavy, Camlin and Tullyrusk," by present Vicar, the Rev. Charles Watson, M.A., B.D., where much of interest will be found, and we heartily endorse the words of the late Bishop Reeves in a letter found on the subject of this little work, written to its author in 1890, in which he says:- "If only the majority of the clergy of the united diocese would exert themselves with spirit, industry, and benevolence, there would be produced a compilation which would, in the loving hands of Lavens Ewart, set this diocese beyond all comparison in the literary and constitutional rank of A1 in the diocesan literature of the Irish Church."

Let us again urge on our clerical brethren the great value of such parochial "stories" – it can scarcely be estimated; and surely amongst our University degree men, of whom we rejoice to think we have still so many in every diocese, we cannot lack the small amount of literary capacity to put together what is interesting and of value in our parishes, neither can the want of time be pleaded, except in cases few and far between. We for our part will be glad to give any information that is asked us, that can assist the clergy to carry out this much to be desired work.

Sale of Work

The following extract is from The Lisburn Herald dated Saturday April 17th 1948.

Glenavy Parish
Countess Granville opens sale

The Protestant Hall, Glenavy was crowded last Saturday afternoon when a sale of work organised by the Select vestry of the parish of Glenavy was opened by the Countess of Granville.

The Archdeacon of Connor, Ven., J.R. McDonald, M.A., who presided, said that the object of the sale was to raise funds in connection with the parish which had rebuilt its church at a cost of £7,000. Rev W. J. Chambers and Rev. W.J.P. Frazer expressed the meeting’s gratitude to the Countess, and a vote of thanks to the chairman was carried on the proposal of Mr. J. Walker and Mr. G. Johnston. There was a great variety of stalls and buying was brisk.

Social and Dance

The following is an extract from The Lisburn Herald dated 19th June 1948.

Glenavy Conservative Flute Band (Ladies’ Committee)

Social & Dance will be held in Glenavy Protestant Hall on Friday 25th June 1948 from 9pm till 2am.

The drawing of prizes in connection with the above will take place during the evening. Music by Summerhill Dance Band. Spot and Novelty Dances. Admission: Ladies 2s Gents 3s.

Glenavy Cardwell and 40 Shades of Green

Glenavy Cardwell and 40 Shades of Green published in The Antrim Guardian, 27 November 2014

Glenavy Cardwell and 40 Shades of Green published in The Antrim Guardian, 27 November 2014

Almost two hundred years ago James Green from the parish of Ballinderry, County Antrim married Nancy Cardwell in her native parish of Glenavy. That was in September 1817 in the new parish church building in Glenavy village which had been the resting place to many of the Cardwell ancestors, from at least the early 18 th century.

A lack of records and scant details of those that survive from this period inhibit the researcher when attempting to establish the exact origin of the bride and groom on this occasion.

An American biographer, R.H.W. Peterson, compiled a sketch of James Green and his family and he informs the reader that James was the son of a Methodist minister called John and his wife Lizzie, born on 8th January, 1791. At the age of 19 he had lost both parents and in 1822 he and his wife left these shores for America, arriving in New York after 86 days at sea.

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