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Dundonald

Trip Planner Europe  /  UK  /  Scotland  /  Ayrshire  /  South Ayrshire  /  Dundonald
Dundonald is a large settlement and civil parish in County Down. It lies east of Belfast and is often deemed to be a suburb of the city. It includes the large housing estate of Ballybeen, and the many new housing estates that have emerged in the last few years. Dundonalders do NOT consider themselves part of East Belfast as Dundonald has its own proud history. John de Courcey established a keep including a motte and Bailey in the 12th century. This is now known as Most Park and can be accessed from Church Green, Comber Road and the Upper Newtownards Road.HistoryDundonald refers to a 12th-century Norman fort, or Dún, Dún Dónaill, that stood in the town. One of the largest in Ireland, the man-made hill that the fort stood on is still in existence.Although the mound is commonly referred to as 'the moat' this is, in fact, a corruption of the word 'motte' and refers to the fact that this defensive structure was built in the style of a motte and bailey. St. Elizabeth's Church is located beside the moat, with the Cleland Mausoleum in the adjacent graveyard.Dundonald acquired rail links to Belfast and Newtownards in 1850, Downpatrick in 1859 and Newcastle in 1869. The town was located on the once extensive Belfast and County Down Railway mainline. The rail link with Belfast encouraged Dundonald to expand as a commuter town, but in 1950 the railway line running through Dundonald was closed. Dundonald railway station was opened on 6 May 1850, but finally closed on 24 April 1950. In the 1960s, Dundonald was deemed a small village. A number of property developments, most notably the housing estate Ballybeen, were then built and Dundonald's population rapidly grew.
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