Stewartstown, County Tyrone
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Looking north towards the main street
|Population||608 (2001 Census)|
|Irish grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||Northern Ireland|
Stewartstown is a small village in County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, close to Lough Neagh and about 5 miles (8.0 km) from Cookstown, 3 miles (4.8 km) from Coalisland and 7 miles (11 km) from Dungannon. In the 2001 Census it had a population of 608 people.
Stewartstown was built for The 1st Baron Castle Stuart (formerly known as The 3rd Lord Ochiltree; 1560–1629). He was a direct descendant of King Robert II of Scots, by a younger son, Robert Stewart, Duke of Albany. He held the High Court position of First Gentleman of the Bedchamber to King James VI of Scots (later King James I of England). Lord Castle Stuart, when he was still The 3rd Lord Ochiltree, held the office of General of Edinburgh Castle, and gained the rank of General in the Artillery. In 1611, when he was still styled as The 3rd Lord Ochiltree, he settled in Ulster, where he was granted 3,000 acres (12 km2) in County Tyrone, and later other large tracts of land in other parts of Ulster as well.
In 1615, with the King's consent, the then 3rd Lord Ochiltree sold and resigned the Barony of Ochiltree in the Peerage of Scotland to his first cousin, Sir James Stuart, son of James Stewart, Earl of Arran, in order to raise money. In its stead, in 1619, he was raised to the Peerage of Ireland and created The 1st Baron Castle Stuart by James VI and I. No Parliament sat between the years of 1615 and 1634, so he never voted in Parliament, but constantly enjoyed the title. In 1587, he married Margaret, daughter of Sir John Kennedy of Blairquhan Castle, Ayrshire. He was the ancestor of the Earls Castle Stewart. William Greer (September 22, 1909 - February 23, 1985), born in Stewartstown, was an agent of the U.S. Secret Service, best known for having driven President John F. Kennedy's automobile in the motorcade through Dealey Plaza in Dallas on November 22, 1963, when the President was assassinated.
Places of interest
Roughan Castle was built circa 1618 by Sir Andrew Stewart (d. 1639), 2nd Lord Castlestewart, eldest son of Andrew Stewart (1580–1629), 3rd Lord Ochiltree, 1st Lord Castlestewart, who came from Scotland during the plantation and established the nearby town of Stewartstown. The 2nd Lord Castlestewart built his castle overlooking Roughan Lough. It is a small square castle, three storeys high with a central tower 20 feet (6.1 m) square, flanked by thick rounded towers at each corner.
For more information see The Troubles in Stewartstown (Tyrone), which includes a list of incidents in Stewartstown during the Troubles resulting in two or more fatalities.
- Ballytrea Primary School
- St. Mary's Primary School, 22 West Street. Catholic maintained primary school. Principal, Marian Hamill. School website: www.stmarysstewartstown.com
- Stewartstown Primary School
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- Stewartstown railway station opened on 28 July 1879, closed for passenger traffic on 16 January 1956 and finally closed altogether on 1 June 1958.
Stewartstown is classified as a small village or hamlet by the NI Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) (i.e. with population between 500 and 1,000 people). On Census day (29 April 2001) there were 608 people living in Stewartstown. Of these:
- 25.3% were aged under 16 years and 14.8% were aged 60 and over
- 46.7% of the population were male and 53.3% were female
- 72.9% were from a Catholic background and 26.2% were from a Protestant background
- 5.1% of people aged 16–74 were unemployed
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