The Lord Carson Memorial Arch was erected in West Street in the Edgarstown area of Portadown. It was unveiled and dedicated on the 10th July 1937 by major D.G. Shillington. It was proudly displayed every year for the twelfth of July celebrations until Edgarstown was redeveloped in the 1970’s.
The main centre piece of the arch was a delicate stain glass window in memory of Lord Carson. It was fortunate that this was saved by a local resident and once again became the focal point of the new arch which was erected in 1982. Once again the arch stood proudly for the twelfth of July celebrations for a number of years until it fell down in a bad storm.
The stain glass window was saved with just one small pane of glass broken. It can now be seen mounted on the front of Carleton Street Orange Hall.
The original arch from 1937 and below the arch which was erected in 1982
One of the original murals in Edgarstown was of King William III, it was painted on the gable wall of a house in Henry Street, which no longer exists. Unfortunately, due to the areas housing redevelopment in the 1970’s it was demolished and lost.
There are only a handful of murals still remaining in Portadown today. Probably the most eye-catching one can be found in the Edgarstown area. It was finished and unveiled in time for the 100th Anniversary of the Battle of the Somme, in memorial of the 36th Ulster Division. It depicts a famous painting, a copy of which can be found on display in The Ulster Tower at the Somme.
The original mural demolished in the 1970’s and pictured below, the new mural for the 36th Ulster Division.
Portadown was once a vital part of the railway network rightfully earning the accolade ‘Hub of the North’. Train driver, William Partridge, a proud Portadown man from West Street in the Edgarstown area of the town drove the last steam train from Great Victoria Street station, Belfast to Connolly Street station, Dublin in 1966.
The ‘Steam Enterprise’ last journey brought to an end a 111 years of regular steam-hauled passenger train services between Irelands two capital cities which had began on the 5th April 1855. On board the train as it left Belfast were more than 300 steam train enthusiasts with their special souvenir tickets issued by the Ulster Transport Authority. The ‘Steam Enterprise’ made its last stop in Portadown that day on its final journey. Portadown was the only other stop in Northern Ireland. William Partridge was a member of Kilmority Loyal Orange Lodge 31 and also Kilmority Royal Black Perceptory.
William Partridge on the Steam Enterprise on the day of its last journey and pictured below he is on parade with Kilmority LOL 31. (behind the Lambeg drummer)
McConvilles is situated on the corner of Mandeville Street in Portadown since the 1800’s, when it was also a hotel.
Inside there is still the original wooden snugs, moulded ceilings and etched Russian oak fixtures in the Bar. They were replicated from a design on the famous ship, The Titanic which was built just over the mountains in Belfast. The only other pub in Northern Ireland which has the original snugs is The Crown Bar in Belfast. At the bar itself you will also find a well dressed man on the counter. Don’t worry, he’s a cigar lighter that’s said to be Sir Roger Tichbourne, the ninth richest man in Britain who disappeared in 1854.
McConvilles today is a thriving bar complex and a main stop for the majority of locals and visitors to the town. It includes Bar 2 and Euphoria Nightclub.
Charles Moore Johnston was a Captain with the 9th Battalion, Royal Irish Fusiliers. He was originally from Carrickblacker Avenue in Portadown. Captain Johnston was in command of ‘C’ Company, which was positioned on the left of the centre for the attack on the 1st July. He was killed in action on the 1st July 1916 at age 30. He is buried in Mensil Communal Cemetery Extension, Somme, France. He was a member of Portadown Unionist Club.
His Father also, Charles, was Chairman of Portadown Unionist Club. The bannerette of Portadown Unionist Club has been preserved and is on display in Carleton Street Orange Hall.