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Long-established Woodland

Tollymore was the first state forest to be designated a Forest Park. Now mainly coniferous, the forest covers almost 630 hectares at the foot of the Mourne mountains and was previously owned by the Earls of Roden.

Along the banks of the beautiful Shimna river, there are rocky outcrops, bridges, grottos and caves among the mature oaks and other native species. Within the conifer areas there are occasional big, old broadleaved trees, remnants of the former parkland and mixed woodland that covered the estate. Oak wood from Tollymore was the preferred material for the interiors of the White Star liners including the 'Titanic' which was built in Belfast.

Elsewhere in the park there are experimental forest plots, and exotic sights such as monkey puzzle, eucalyptus, and giant redwoods. Also growing here is the original tree of slow-growing spruce, Picea abies 'Clanbrassiliana' which originated nearby in about 1750 and is the oldest tree in any arboretum in Ireland. A magnificent avenue of Deodar cedars makes a striking entrance to the park.

The first mention of Tollymore was in a grant in 1611 which included ‘Ballytullymore’. In 1674 a transfer deed detailed Tollymore as having 300 acres of wood and underwood. The first deer park was probably built on this site around 1710 to 1715 and a new deer park added in 1740.

Walter Harris in his ‘Antient and Present State of the County of Down’ in 1744 described Tollymore as "finely wooded, cut into ridings and vistoes." Maps from 1760 and 1777 show the estate as having much woodland and this was before the Earl of Clanbrassill began his great period of planting from around 1777 to 1789. In his almanac he recorded the planting of over 330,000 trees. He laid the park out in the naturalistic style, one of the earliest examples of this in Ireland.

1203

Tollymore

J337319

Down

Down

Kilcoo

Tollymore Park

CASTLEROCK

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