Saintfield & Downpatrick

Saturday 5 December
Saintfield House (J398604) was built about 1750 by Francis Price. It is a double gable-ended house of three storeys over a basement. It has a five-bay front and a three-bay rear. The house had single storey three-bay wings which ended in two-storey two-bay pavilions with high pyramidal roofs and central chimneys. One of these has been demolished. To the west of the house is a large stable-block. It has been greatly modified but retains a small bell-cot, with bell, over the gateway. Beside it is a tall cylindrical brick water-tower which is now in need of repair.

To the south of the house is a pair of raths. The first one (J398599) is about 45m diameter and is planted with trees. There is a very fine platform and good traces of a ditch. To the south of this is another rath platform (J401598) about 40m diameter. It features a good inner bank but there are no traces of a ditch. This is Lisdalgan townland. There are traces of several other raths within the estate and across the road is a motte (J394598).
St Patrick's Church (RC), Downpatrick (J488442) was built in 1875 in the Gothic style. A south transept is being added in a similar style. There is a very good west rose window. The Unitarian Meeting House in Stream Street (J489443) was built in 1711. It is a cross-shaped building with offices and vestry occupying the head. The main body of the church has a gallery in each arm and in the nave. A high central pulpit overlooks all parts.

The excavations beside the Cathedral (J483445) show little of interest. There is a small collection of carved stones inside the Cathedral and a much-weathered High Cross outside. The large boulder in the graveyard which is said to mark the grave of St Patrick was placed there earlier this century.
The Old Jail is now a museum (J484446). As well as specimen cells it has a number of interesting exhibitions including Egyptology and Bygones. There is a photographic exhibition which includes a collection of cameras.