Newry is the sixth largest city in Northern Ireland, and thirteenth in all-Ireland. Half of it is situated in County Armagh and the other half in County Down. It is about halfway between Belfast and Dublin. It has a population of about 30,000 and was founded in 1144 alongside a Cistercian monastery. It grew as a market town and a garrison and became a port in 1742 when it was linked to Lough Neagh by the first canal in the British Isles. In March 2002, as part of Queen Elizabeth's Golden Jubilee celebrations, Newry was granted city status alongside Lisburn BBC report.
Notable buildings in the city include Newry Catholic Cathedral of St. Patrick and St. Colman and Newry Town Hall . The town hall is notable as it is built over the river Clanrye that is the boundary between the counties of County Down and Armagh. The building of a city hall is also planned as part of the celebrations of the city status granting. The city also boasts a museum and an arts centre . Newry has a reputation as one of the best provincial shopping towns in Ireland and also has two of the oldest churches in Ireland.
The headquarters of Newry and Mourne District Council is in Newry. The district of Newry and Mourne has a majority nationalist population leading to a council dominated by the Social Democratic and Labour Party and Sinn Féin, but there are some Ulster Unionist and DUP councillors.
The name of the city comes from the original Irish "An Iu(bh)ir C(h)inn Tra(ha)" which translates as the Yew at the head of the Strand, which relates to an apocryphal story that Saint Patrick planted a yew tree there in the fifth century. In modern Irish the full name of the town is rarely used; instead it is abbreviated to An tIúr (pron. "on ture").
The city has a number of grammar schools , which include is St. Colman's College, Rated the top grammar school in Northern Ireland, with an enrollment of 861 pupils and Our Lady's Grammar, rated top girls' grammar school in Northern Ireland, it has an enrolment of 808 pupils.
See also: List of towns in Northern Ireland
Last updated: 05-23-2005 09:23:43