The Old Church

This beautiful sandstone church has been part of village life since 1840.

Now a community-run arts and heritage centre, the Old Church was originally built by Michael Harrison, then living in Glenmona House, for the benefit of Protestant gentry who previously had no Church of Ireland church in the vicinity.


Constructed with locally quarried sandstone, it is quite similar to Layde Church, Cushendall, except that its tower is crowned by tapering corner pinnacles.


Among those buried in the tiny churchyard are Ronald John McNeill (Baron Cushendun), who rebuilt Glenmona, and his first cousin Ada McNeill.


The small congregation was boosted in summer months by visitors, including poets Louis MacNeice and John Masefield. Another much-loved poet, Nesta Higginson (Moira O’Neill) - now officially commemorated by a blue plaque - would have attended services there when she lived in Cushendun as a teenager.


Over time, the congregation dwindled and the church was deconsecrated in 2003.


In 2006 Cushendun Building Preservation Trust began working to have the building restored as a community arts and heritage space, and the project was finally realised in 2019. The Old Church Centre hosts all sorts of events and performances and is available for private hire. You can find out more and see the current ‘What’s On’ at https://theoldchurchcentre.com.