Ballymiscaw is a large townland in County Down, on the edge of Belfast.
According to the PLACENAMESNI website, the name Ballymiscaw is probably a translation from the Irish phrase Baile Lios na Scáth “townland of the fort of the shadows or spectres”.
The Ballymiscaw Road runs up into the hills between Dundonald and Holywood, but the townland also includes most of the Stormont Estate. This means that anyone hunting for a modern-day “fort of shadows or spectres” will soon spot Parliament Buildings, home to the Northern Ireland Assembly.
It’s always easy to mock politicians, but on the issue of townlands, I’m actually on the same side as the Assembly, which has used “Ballymiscaw” in its official address since 2010. The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development also uses “Ballymiscaw” in its address. So here’s a celebratory photo of fireworks over Stormont.
On a theme of road racing, this townland is also the location of the annual Craigantlet Hill Climb. On the day of the event, the Ballymiscaw and Belmont Roads are closed to the public to allow racing cars to storm up a short but steep hill.
The townland of Ballymiscaw also includes Dundonald Cemetery, and a short stretch of the Comber Greenway just visible through the trees on the south side of the cemetery.
Which civil parish is Ballymiscaw in? Dundonald
Which council area is Ballymiscaw in? Belfast City Council
Which county is Ballymiscaw in? County Down