Castlereagh Presbyterian Church

The church is located at 79 Church Road, near the centre of Castlereagh.

The first church built on this site in 1650 was almost on the doorstep of the old  ‘grey castle’ of the powerful Gaelic chieftain, Con O’Neill. Known as Castle Reagh, it was from here that Con made a decision that would have far reaching consequences for the history of Ireland. During a Christmas party here in 1602, he sent out some men to raid a wine store in the then tiny village of Belfast, which the castle overlooked.

The disastrous repercussions of that raid would ultimately lead to the division of his land with Sir James Hamilton and Sir Hugh Montgomery and the influx of thousands of Scots settlers to North Down and the Ards. Most of these settlers were Presbyterians and it was they who founded the church here.  The present church building was opened in 1835.

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