Free historical lectures to shed light on Lurgan’s past

Free historical lectures to shed light on Lurgan’s past

A map of Lurgan from the 18th century.

Staff reporter


Staff reporter


A series of free historical lectures will take place in Lurgan this autumn and winter, delving into aspects of the town and its surrounding area in the 18th century.

Aiming to increase understanding and knowledge of Lurgan’s unique history and heritage, the lecture series will help the local community reconnect with their town and strengthen their sense of identity.

The talks are supported by Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council and The National Lottery Heritage Fund through the Lurgan Townscape Heritage (Lurgan TH) scheme, which has been made possible thanks to National Lottery players.

The first talk of this free lecture series will take place this Saturday 16 October at 7.30pm in The Jethro Centre (Flush Place, Lurgan) and will see Lurgan’s pre-eminent historian Dr Francis X. McCorry take to the stage to discuss 'Shankill Parish (Lurgan) Church of Ireland Vestry, 1672-1782: District Administration and Community Building'.

Dr McCorry will examine the early history of the Shankill Parish (Lurgan) Church of Ireland Vestry, which effectively operated as the town's council during these early years. Drawing upon his many years of research in the Shankill Parish Church archives, Dr McCorry will provide an insight into how the Vestry came into being and the personalities involved, before paying tribute to the critical role the body played in the overall administration, development and welfare of the young town of Lurgan in what were challenging years marked by increasing poverty and periodic outbreaks of disease and famine in the town.

Admission to the lecture is free and no booking is required. Please note, due to Covid-19 measures there is limited capacity and once reached there will be no further admission to the hall. Names and contact numbers will also be collected for all attendees before entry to the hall to assist with track and trace.

Follow-up lectures will be held between November 2021 and April 2022, with topics including the beginnings and development of Lurgan’s damask linen industry; the impact of 1740-41 famine on the town; the Lurgan Free School; and the early development of the Brownlow demesne (now Lurgan Park).

This series of talks is just one of many activities taking place as part of the Lurgan TH scheme; a heritage-led regeneration initiative which aims to repair, restore and regenerate the built heritage of the Lurgan town centre, while promoting the history and heritage of the town through an events and activities programme.

For further information on the Lurgan TH scheme, please visit or contact the Education Officer David Weir at

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