Living in Armagh
The county of Armagh has a population of almost 160,000 people and carries the nickname ‘The Orchard County’. Armagh’s landscape is an interesting mix of fertile soil and rugged mountain terrain. The county also enjoys an Oceanic climate with relatively mild winters and wet summers. Good news for those looking to live in Armagh is that temperatures rarely go below freezing during the day, even during winter. However, rainfall is common with an average of 30 inches falling each year.
The county of Armagh has two main motorways linking it to the rest of the country. The M1 which links Belfast to Dungannon and the A1/N1 which connects Belfast to Dublin run through the county. The Ulster Railway first appeared in Armagh in 1848, connecting Armagh town with Belfast. At one time, the county had a fantastic railroad network which connected it to various important cities across the north of Ireland.
However, times have changed and only Lurgan, Portadown, Newry and a handful of other small towns have rail access. Those interested in living in Armagh who don’t drive and are reliant on public transport will be well served by Ulsterbus who have a range of services which connects the majority of towns in the county to Belfast.
Armagh is filled with tourist attractions, few of which garner more attention than St. Patrick’s Cathedral. It is said to be the very first church founded by Saint Patrick and was considered to be the most important monastery in Ireland for centuries. The church has been destroyed and rebuilt on no fewer than 17 occasions. The Cathedral’s cemetery is said to hold the remains of Brian Boru and is currently the seat of the Archbishop of Armagh.
Gosford Castle is another popular attraction and can be found in the town of Markethill which is close to the County Down border. Work commenced on the castle in 1819 and it took over 30 years to complete. The castle fell into decay but was bought by a development company in 2006 and they planned to build apartments there. Two years later, the first residents moved in. If you are interested in the chance to live within a castle, Gosford Castle offers you this unique opportunity.
Towns & Sport
Due to the relatively small size of the county’s population, Armagh has just three towns with a population of over 10,000 though Armagh City is one of these. The others are Newry and Craigavon. Craigavon is an interesting place because it was originally intended to be a linear city which linked Lurgan and Portadown. However, the full plan was never completed and it is now seen by locals as a link between the towns rather than a large town that incorporates both.
The Armagh Gaelic Football team is one of the most successful in Ulster in recent times. However, it is the small town of Crossmaglen which has dominated the county scene in recent years. Despite the small population of the town, Crossmaglen Rangers are the most successful club team in All-Ireland history, winning the championship five times. They have only lost one game in the county championship since 1995.
Also check out Working in Armagh and History of Armagh, or view Armagh Jobs