“It is a wonderful day for the Glens of Antrim.”

Last weekend the BBC’s Restoration Village focused on three projects in Northern Ireland and, after a week of telephone votes have been counted, they’ve revealed which one will progress to the final programme on 17th September – Cushendun Old Church. As the Belfast Telegraph report indicates their pitch did emphasis what I’d have to suspect is the ace up their sleeve in this, a local literary and artistic connection[RealPlayer video].From the Belfast Telegraph report

The Cushendun church is one of the most significant buildings in the National Trust village, a planned settlement designed by Clough Williams-Ellis, the architect and conservationist who created the model village of Portmeirion in Wales.

The church, which was built in 1840, was deconsecrated in 2003 due to a dwindling congregation, although in its heyday worshippers would have included local literary figures such as Louis McNeice, May Crommelin, Moira O’Neill and John Masefield.

The other local projects will be hoping that the publicity will provide deserved boosts to their own campaigns.

  • Donnie

    I watched the programme last week and I was underwhelmed by the Cushendun pitch. I thought the building and any historic emphasis placed on it was nothing special compared to the others in Gracehill and White House.

  • Pete Baker


    I agree that the Cushendun pitch may have appeared less than compelling.. but.. they did have a simple proposal, a building that was in reasonable condition and not beyond imagining in its new proposed usage, and a literary and artistic connection to pull in those potential voters.

  • na

    I think they have very little chance in the big vote as the building looked pretty ordinary and seemed in a good state of repair compared to many others. Though the benefit may be derived through increased publicity and local support for their project.

  • darth rumsfeld

    late news na- it won !!!!!

  • na


    They have just won a place in the final. Only the overall winner gets the money. The competition can be seen here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/programmes/restoration/2006/index.shtml

  • Dogzilla

    Pity they didn’t opt for Layde Old Church in Cushendall, now that would have been worth restoring. Cushendun remains so damned twee.

  • Jo

    They got £50,000, na. Perhaps you’ll need to go check that, seeing as its me who said it. 🙂