Grey Abbey Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church

On Newtownards Road, just past the mini roundabout in the centre of Greyabbey.

Beneath the portrait of the Reverend James Porter inside the church is the inscription, ‘Sacred to the memory of the Reverend James Porter Dissenting (Presbyterian) Minister of Greyabbey who Departed this Life July 1798 aged 45 years”. Departed is something of an understatement as the Reverend Porter was actually hung for his support of the Society of United Irishmen in the 1798 Rebellion.

His main crime was to intercept a letter intended for the commander of the British garrison in Belfast warning of a rebel attack on Portaferry. In North Down and Ards, Presbyterians constituted the majority on the rebel side and several ministers were among the leaders executed or transported to America following the failure of the uprising. It is said that the tree from which Porter was hung still exists at Grey Abbey, where he is buried, today.  The current church was built in 1862.


Parking available on Main Street. For more information call 028 4278 8650 or visit

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