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My place, my people: Week one looks at County Antrim

This page has been specially written for those thousands of school children who are doing the Belfast Telegraph Newspapers in Education project, My Place My People. Over the six weeks of the project, we will be looking at each county in Northern Ireland. Today we start with Antrim, looking at some of the county’s most treasured monuments and influential people.

Published 27/01/2016

The Giant's Causeway
The Giant's Causeway

The county of Antrim is located in the north east of Northern Ireland. It borders the famous Lough Neagh as well as counties Down and Londonderry.

The history and natural beauty of Antrim makes it one of Northern Ireland's most popular destinations for visitors.

The Giant's Causeway, which is around three miles from the town of Bushmills, attracts thousands of tourists every year. It is an area of 40,000 basalt columns formed by an ancient volcanic eruption and has myths, legends and stories attached to it which are loved by young and old.

Not too far away is another big Antrim attraction, the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge near Ballintoy.

It crosses a chasm that is 30 metres deep and 20 metres wide. It takes bravery and a sense of adventure, especially on a windy day, to walk across, but if you do it you are rewarded with wonderful views.

Most of Northern Ireland's capital city, Belfast, is in county Antrim. So too are towns like Larne, Ballymena and, of course, Antrim.

Another Antrim town is Portrush, which has the Royal Portrush golf course which will host the biggest golf event in the world, The Open, in 2019. It is not just well known for golf is a much liked seaside resort.

The Glens of Antrim are also worth seeing. There are nine Glens. They include Glenarm and Glenariff, which is known as the Queen of the Glens.

One of the main towns in the Glens is Ballycastle, which is home to the Oul' Lammas Fair. The Fair marks the end of summer and beginning of harvest. Amongst the hundreds of stalls featuring crafts and farm produce, there will be people selling the local speciality 'Yellow Man', a sweet honeycomb candy. Also at the Fair you are able to buy seaweed known as 'dulse'.

One of Northern Ireland's most historic buildings, Carrickfergus Castle, is also in Co Antrim. It was built way back in 1177.

A Special Person: Kaitlyn McWatters

My granny Lottie is a very special person in my life.  She always has a smile on her face and always makes me laugh.

As soon as I come home from school on a Monday and Wednesday, she would run up to me and give me a big hug.

And when she gives me that big hug she'd tell me that I'm nearly the size of her, even though I am the height of her.

My granny Lottie sometimes acts like a three year old and loves to play children's games, which is one reason why I love her so much!

My granny is always energetic and ready for some fun!

When I come home from school she would always have soup and bread ready for me and sometimes a few treats.

Granny, I may not say this all the time but I really do love you and your children's games.

This is from your 10-year-old granddaughter Kaitlyn McWatters.

Influential people from County Antrim

CS Lewis:

The famous author was born in Belfast in 1898. He wrote the world renowned Chronicles of Narnia, which includes The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

Lilian Bland:

Although born in England in 1878, Lilian Bland moved to Carnmoney in County Antrim as a young lady and became one of the first women to design, build and fly an aircraft.

Liam Neeson:

Born in Ballymena in 1952, Liam Neeson has become one of the most respected and revered actors in the world. He has starred in a host of successful films including Schindler’s List, Love Actually and The Lego Movie.

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