Close this window when done






Below is an extract from a1924 book published by the railway. The quote describes Dundonald for the tourist visiting by rail. The book based on Praegar’s 1900 Guide and was titled the “Belfast & County Down Railway Company’s Official Tourist Guide to County Down and the Mourne Mountains”. This book sought to give the tourist “an easily grasped and up-to-date account of the city of Belfast – the starting point of tours of Down – and of the principal towns and villages in the territory served by the Belfast and County Down Railway Company and its connections;”



Page 67



“…As we approach the station of




(dun Domhnaill, the fort of Donall, or Donald, one of the O’Neills) – 5 miles – we see on the left the large tumulus from which the little village takes its name. Hard by rises the square tower of the parish church, and beside it the lofty sepulchral monument of the Cleland family. On the right is a quarry in a boss of dolerite, which, flowing out as molten lava on the sandstone floor, has baked the underlying rock into a yellow quartzite. An afternoon may be well spent in examining the antiquities of this pretty spot. Leaving the station, we cross the Comber Road, which here passes under the railway, and take a by-road on the right. Turning almost immediately to the left up a hill, we reach the parish church of Dundonald, and examine the great sepulchral mound. Half a mile west of the church is the demesne of Summerfield, in which is a chalybeate spring which was formerly in great repute. In the Presbyterian church at Dundonald is preserved a curious wrought-iron chest, which is said to have been taken from one of the wrecked ships of the Spanish Armada. Returning by the road by which we came, we keep straight on when we come close to the railway, instead of crossing the bridge to the right, and on the right in a few minutes’ time we see a fine standing-stone close to the road. Following the road for a mile, we next visit a large rath or earthen fort that stands beside a farm-house a couple of hundred yards on our left. Half a mile further on we reach the demesne of Rockfield. If we turn to the left, after passing the gate-lodge, and cross two fields, we find one of the finest cromleacs in County Down, well known as the Kempe Stone. The townload in which it stands, now called Greengraves, was formerly known as Ballycloughtogal, !the town of the raised stone. The name evidently refers to the cromleac, and tradition says that a stranger warrior is buried there. The present designation points to the same tradition, Kempe in Anglo-Saxon signifying a warrior.

From Dundonald the railway runs for three miles down the valley of the Comber river to the town of