Hill of the O’Neill & Ranfurly House
Situated in Dungannon and located at the top of Market Square is Hill of The O’Neill and the newly refurbished Ranfurly House Arts and Visitor Centre. All visitors are invited to come and discover how Dungannon was once at the centre of world affairs. Learn about the history of the O’Neills, the Flight of the Earls and the Plantation of Ulster through an interactive exhibition on permanent display in Ranfurly House Arts and Visitor Centre. Take a stroll on the Hill of the O’Neill and take in the spectacular views from the newly landscaped gardens and pathways of this historical location. View the remains of the towers that belonged to the Knox Hannyngton House on the site which once stood the Castle of Hugh O’Neill.
St. Patricks Chair & Well
Also known as the Druids Chair and Well or St. Brigid’s Well, perched on the hillside in Altedaven Glen, this large ‘chair’ of sandstone is believed to have healing properties and local folklore says that if you sit and make a wish within days it will come true! The chair is a huge 2m high stone block, shaped like a throne. The well which is said to never run dry is another rock. It has a depression in it and is filled with natural water. According to folklore the water within such depressions or bullauns has healing powers and this well is supposed to be good at healing warts.
In 1609 Sir Toby Caulfield, English solider who had fought for Queen Elizabeth the First in Spain and the lowlands against Hugh O’Neill in Ireland, was rewarded by King James the First with 1000 acres at Ballydonnelly. He later received a Knighthood and became Lord Charlemount. Here he built a village for his men which he called Castlecaulfield and in 1614 he built this castle for himself in the English style. It is generally believed an O’Donnelly fort originally stood here. The Castle was built from limestone and probably had a slated roof. It had cellars, a small court, and a medieval style gate lodge for defensive purposes. The site was not a particularly defensive one. In the rebellion of 1641 the Castle was attacked by the O’Donnellys and burned and it has been a ruin ever since.
Knockmanny Passage Tomb
The cairn commands superb views south over the Clogher Valley. The covering cairn in its present form is modern, added in 1959 to protect the stones from weathering and vandalism. Excavation showed that a passage of the classic passage tomb is absent but several of the stones forming the chamber are decorated with characteristic passage tomb art including circles, spirals and zigzags. Prospective visitors should contact NIEA to arrange for the chamber to be opened. (028 9054 3030)
Beaghmore Stone Cirlces
A large, impressive series of Bronze Age ceremonial stone monuments excavated from the surrounding bog between 1945 and 1949 and in 1965. The main features are the six stone circles (built of fairly small stones) occurring in pairs, with 12 small cairns which held cremation burials and stone rows all running in parallel. Finds were sparse from the excavations but two flint hoards were found, one dated by radiocarbon to the late Neolithic and other early bronze age.