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Ballywalter Parish, County Down

Origin

Ir. Baile Bhaltair 'Walter's townland'; perhaps earlier Eng. Walter(s)ton

Background

Village is on E coast of Ards Peninsula, 5km E of Greyabbey

bar: Ards Upper

Walter was a common personal name among the Anglo-Normans, as witnessed by the mention of a ‘Waltero Purcel’ in Cartae Dunensis 419 §2 (c. 1177).  The taxation of Pope Nicholas IV refers to Rector ville Walteri de Logan, i.e. ‘the rector of Walter-de-Logan’s town’, and Reeves (EA 67, n. m) successfully identifies this as modern Ballywalter (par. Ballylinny), a grange near Doagh in Co. Antrim.  In the case of Ballywalter in the Ards, the alias form Ballywalter al. Walterstowne of 1637 (form 8 above) indicates an Anglo-Norman origin, Walter(s)ton, which has been then gaelicized between the Anglo-Norman invasion and the Plantation period.  For a similar development in this parish, see Anglo-Norman Pereston (1333 AD), modern Ballyferris.  One is not in a position at present to identify the Walter of Ballywalter.

References

Hughes A. J. (1992): Place-Names of Northern Ireland vol. 2 p. 67

Additional Information

See town and townland of Ballywalter for historical forms of this name.

Historical name form

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Barony
Ards Upper
Parish
Ballywalter
Parish in 1851
Ballywalter
Townland
None
Place name ID
17588
Place name type
P