Magheramorne (from Irish: Machaire Morna) is a hamlet in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It is about 5 miles south of Larne on the shores of Larne Lough. It had a population of 75 people in the 2001 Census. It is within the Larne Borough Council area.
Nearby is an old limestone quarry currently owned by Lafarge (formerly known as Blue Circle). Extraction of limestone from the quarry, for use in the Magheramorne cement plant, ceased in 1980. The high point for limestone extraction at Magheramorne was in the 19th and 20th centuries. In the 19th century a mission church for labourers at the limeworks was established and became a Presbyterian Church.
In September 2009, Lafarge obtained outline planning permission for redevelopment of the quarry and cement works, including a new eco-friendly village and a major cycling centre mainly in the quarry. A regeneration plan will transform the quarry into a nature conservation, leisure and housing area. The 75 hectare quarry will be the home of a World Cycling Centre and the All-Ireland Scuba Diving Centre if the plans go ahead. The area of Larne Lough that was used to ship cement out of Magheramorne is now used as a marina.
Game of Thrones
The abandoned Magheramorne quarry area is used as a filming location for the HBO TV series Game of Thrones. Castle Black, Hardhome and the Wall were filmed there, whereas scenes shot atop the wall were filmed inside the Paint Hall Studios in Belfast. The composite set (with both exteriors and interiors) consisted of a large section of Castle Black including the courtyard, the ravenry, the mess hall and the barracks, and used the stone wall of the quarry as the basis for the ice wall that protects Westeros. A functional elevator was built to lift the rangers to the top of the Wall. A castle with real rooms and a working elevator were built near a cliff 400 feet high, CGI fills in the rest to make the wall appear 700 feet high. The area around the elevator was painted white to make it look like ice. George R. R. Martin said: "It’s a pretty spectacular, yet miserable location. It is wet and rainy, and the mud is thick. I visited there; it really gets the actors in the mood of being at the end of the world in all of this cold and damp and chill".
- Saint Comgall, founder of Bangor Abbey in County Down, was born at Magheramorne in the 6th century.
- William McConnell of Magheramorne, who died at the age of 102, was one of the last living survivors of the 1916 Battle of the Somme.
- The area is home to the Magheramorne Silver Band, established in 1882 by one of the local Orange Lodges. The band has drawn its membership mainly from the Magheramorne area and surrounding district, including the town of Larne, and continues to undertake a wide range of engagements across East Antrim and further afield.
- Placenames Database of Ireland
- "Local MP Visits Magheramorne Quarry". Magheramore: Reinvented. Larfarge Tarmac. Retrieved 13 April 2015.
- Magheramorne reinvented by Lafarge
- "Game of Thrones. 10 Secrets about HBO's Adaption". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 13 April 2015.
- "Travels to Season 2 and Beyond with Game of Thrones Creator George R. R. Martin". Fodor's. Retrieved 13 April 2015.
- Sandford, Ernest (1976). Discover Northern Ireland. Belfast: Northern Ireland Tourist Board. p. 53. ISBN 0 9500222 7 6.
- "Magheramorne station" (PDF). Railscot - Irish Railways. Retrieved 2007-08-28.
- Magheramorne Silver Band
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