7 Degrees West - Sir John's Castle Ruins, Ballygawley

7 Degrees West - Sir John's Castle Ruins, Ballygawley

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Production 29/05/1969


04min 28sec


mute, sound



black and white


Digitised as part of the UTV Archive Partnership Project (ITV, Northern Ireland Screen and PRONI)


Department for Communities, ITV, UTV Archive

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Charlie Witherspoon takes his famous bicycle to a famous ruined mansion viewable to anyone travelling in the area of Ballygawley. The house has many names and has been known as Ballygawley House, Ballygawley Park, Sir John’s Castle and even St John’s Castle, which conveyed an extra spiritual title upon Sir John Stewart which he never attained! Built by his son, Sir Hugh Stewart in the early Nineteenth Century, it was burned down 100 years later by the IRA in 1922 and was never rebuilt, leaving an impressive set of ruins to this day.

This report was shot for a series called 7 Degrees West, a kind of early forerunner of Lesser Spotted Ulster, which saw features on old traditions and off-the-beaten-track places. Although the complete programmes, which included studio material, have gone from the archives, a number of these filmed location shoots featuring Charlie on his bike have survived. Look out for others in the Digital Film Archive.


An Ulster Television Production.

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