Visit to the St Patrick’s Centre and County Down Museum in Downpatrick

On the 15th September 2023 a group from Bangor Friends of Columbanus travelled to Downpatrick to visit the County Down Museum and the newly updated visitor galleries in the St Patrick’s Centre.

The Downpatrick High Cross sits centrally in a special gallery

FoCB member and former Director of the Down Museum, Mike King, led a fascinating tour of the Museum including giving a detailed explanation of the decoding of the complex weathered imagery of the Downpatrick high cross. Other highlights included the galleries detailing other early Christian sites in Co Down, the complex history of the twin hills of Downpatrick and the Ballykinler Hut exhibition which so simply and effectively told the stories of the diverse group of men who once lived there.

St Patrick’s Centre entrance with an information board marking the end of St Patrick’s Way pilgrimage walk

After the museum the group moved on to the nearby St Patrick’s Centre where the newly updated galleries now include stories of Comgall, Columbanus and the monastic period after Patrick.

The galleries feature a rich audio-visual enhanced presentation, which takes a serious look at the historic world of Patrick, the known records, the development of legend and the ongoing impact of his traditions in the modern world.

Some of the group with Mike King (bottom left) on the step of the Former Gaol Governor’s Residence