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Killough, County Down


Ir. Cill Locha ‘church of the lough’


On the coast, 9.5km SE of Downpatrick

par: Rathmullan bar: Lecale Upper

Killough is one of the detached townlands of the parish of Rathmullan, lying roughly two miles east of the main portion. The name of the townland is recorded as Killogh in 1635, as Killaugh in c.1672 and as Killough in 1739 and the most satisfactory interpretation of the place-name is Cill Locha ‘church of the lough’. There is now no trace of a church but writing c.1878 O’Laverty (i 156) comments: ‘A few perches to the west of the mill of Killough, a little knoll, on which a few stones are marked with crosses, arrests the eye of the curious, and points out the old cemetery of Knockavalley (the hill of the road); but about the church that once stood there nothing is known, though it gave name to the town of Killough – ‘the church of the lough’ – which grew up beside it’. The lough referred to in the place-name appears to be the inlet of the sea known as Killough Harbour. In the early eighteenth century Michael Ward, father of the first Lord Bangor, developed the village and renamed it Port St. Anne (Universal Gazetteer) in honour of his wife but the new name did not take hold.  Lewis gives the name as St Anne's Port (Lewis' Top. Dict.ii 153).


PMcK, 2009; McKay, P. (2007): A Dictionary of Ulster Place-Names, p. 87;

Additional Information

T., 1851 Census

Historical name form

Old FormRef. DateReference

Cill Locha - Church of the Lough

1834cOSNB Inf. E42 no. 100

Cill Locha

1989GÉ 58

Cill Locha ""church of the lough""

1999Dict. Ulst. PN 87
Killoghe1595Mercator's Ulst.
Killough (Customs)1616CPR Jas I 304a
Killough (Customs)1616CPR Jas I 320b
Killough (Customs)1619CPR Jas I 430b
Killough (Customs)1620CPR Jas I 460b
Killogh1621CPR Jas I 507b
Killough (Customs)1621CPR Jas I 511a
Killegh1636Inq. Ult. (Down) $76 Car. I
Killogh1645Inq. Ult. (Down) $104 Car. I
Killaugh1657cHib. Reg. Lecale
Killogh1659cCensus 1659 70
Killogh1661BSD 97
Killough1663Sub. Roll Down 269
Killogh1667ASE 112 a 31
Killough1669ASE 191 a 19
Killaugh1672cHib. Del. Down
Killalough, strand of1692Rent Roll Down 2
Killoghe1692Rent Roll Down 1
Killogh1710Map Ld de Clifford (OSNB) E42 no. 100
Killough1739Sloane Map
Killough1755Map of Down (OSNB) E42 no. 100
Lecale Upper
Parish in 1851
Place name ID
Place name type