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Bushmills town centre.jpg
Bushmills is located in Northern Ireland
Location within Northern Ireland
Population1,295 (2001 Census)
CountryNorthern Ireland
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtBT57
Dialling code028
UK Parliament
NI Assembly
List of places
Northern Ireland
55°12′13″N 6°31′24″W / 55.2037°N 6.5232°W / 55.2037; -6.5232Coordinates: 55°12′13″N 6°31′24″W / 55.2037°N 6.5232°W / 55.2037; -6.5232

Bushmills (From Irish Muileann na Buaise[2]) is a village on the north coast of County Antrim, Northern Ireland. Bushmills had 1,295 inhabitants in the 2011 Census. It is located 60 miles (97 km) from Belfast, 11 miles (18 km) from Ballycastle and 9 miles (14 km) from Coleraine. The village owes its name to the River Bush and to a large watermill that was built there in the early 17th century.[2] It is home to the Old Bushmills Distillery, which produces Irish whiskey, and is near the Giant's Causeway.

Bushmills in the early 20th century


Bushmills is classified as a village by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA).[3] On Census day (27 March 2011) there were 1,295 people living in Bushmills.[4] Of these:

  • 99% were from the white ethnic group
  • 93% were from a Protestant background and 3.4% were from a Catholic background
  • 77% indicated that they had a British national identity, 26% had a Northern Irish national identity, and 4% had an Irish national identity (respondents could choose more than one)

Places of interest[edit]

The village is best known as the location of the Old Bushmills Distillery. The distillery's products include the Bushmills Original and Black Bush blends, as well as the 10-, 12-, 16-, and 21-year-old Bushmills Single Malts. To celebrate the 400th anniversary of distilling starting in the area the distillery released a unique whiskey called the "1608" which included crystal malt. The distillery draws its water, not from the River Bush itself, but from a tributary known as Saint Columbs Rill.

The Giant's Causeway, which attracts over two million visitors per year, is located 2 miles (3.2 km) north of the town.


Bushmills railway station opened on 28 January 1883, but finally closed on 1 October 1949.[5] There is a narrow-gauge steam train running in the summer from Bushmills to the Giant's Causeway.

Bushmills Station with a steam locomotive on the 3 ft gauge track.

The Belfast-Derry railway line run by Northern Ireland Railways connects to Coleraine and along the branch line to Portrush. Local Ulsterbus provides connections to the railway stations. There is a scenic walk of 7 miles from Portrush alongside Dunluce Castle and the Giant's Causeway and Bushmills Railway.

Twin towns[edit]

Bushmills is twinned with Louisville, Kentucky, in the United States.[6]


Schools in the area include Dunluce School and Bushmills Primary School.


There are a few churches in the village:

  • Bushmills Presbyterian Church, Main Street, Magheraboy (1646)
  • Bushmills Gospel Hall, Priestland Road, Ballaghmore
  • Bushmills Free Presbyterian Church, Priestland Road, Walk Mill
  • St. John The Baptist Church of Ireland, Priestland Road, Glebe (1821)
  • St. Mary's Roman Catholic Church, Priestland Road, Ballaghmore


  • Norman Parke, a Mixed Martial Artist who fights in the UFC, was born and raised in Bushmills.

Navigation history[edit]

Bushmills was the location of one of the five Consol Navigation System transmitter stations in the years following the Second World War.[7]


  1. ^ Dunluce Castle US NI Department of the Environment. Retrieved 21 September 2012.
  2. ^ a b c Placenames Database of Ireland
  3. ^ NI Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) (ie with a population between 1,000 and 2,250 people.)
  4. ^ NI Neighbourhood Information Service
  5. ^ "Bushmills station" (PDF). Railscot - Irish Railways. Retrieved 13 September 2007.
  6. ^ "Sister Cities Online Directory: UK, Europe Archived April 15, 2008, at the Wayback Machine." Sister Cities International. Retrieved on March 26, 2007.
  7. ^ "Dolphin Mk 3 Technical Manual" (PDF). Retrieved 21 May 2013.

External links[edit]