Author Topic: New Barnsley?  (Read 176 times)

ROCKY ROAD

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New Barnsley?
« on: June 03, 2019, 09:18:44 PM »
Does any one know where New Barnsley got its name from? The Ulster Place-Name Society has the suggestion that it was built by people from Barnsley, but I find this difficult to believe!


CMcG

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Re: New Barnsley?
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2019, 01:47:38 AM »
Joe Graham says that it is 'named after a local Clachan sadly burned down in recent troubles'.  However, that doesn't really explain where the name came from.

There's a previous thread on this matter in which sonofshanks said 'There was once a Flax Mill there established by a man from Barnsley, Yorkshire. He named his estate and lands, 'New Barnsley' and when it came to building a housing estate there, Belfast Corporation kept the name.'
http://www.belfastforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=15375.0

All I can add to that is that the first references to New Barnsley I can see, both in old newspapers and Belfast street directories, appear from the early 1870s onwards and those early references are nearly all in connection with the Firth family and the Whiterock Bleaching Company and Bleach Green. Joseph Firth was the manager of a bleach works and moved to Belfast in the 1860s from... Kexbrough, Yorkshire (today a village in the Metropolitan Borough of Barnsley).

Joseph died in 1900 aged 73, his son carried forward his work, as you can see here in the 1901 Ireland census (note that his birthplace is given as 'Yorkshire'):
http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1901/Antrim/Falls_Ward/Springfield_Road/981342/

If correct, then it is a similar phenomenon to the case of Mossley (in Newtownabbey), whereby this English placename was effectively imported by the Grimshaw family from Lancashire who moved here in the 18th C and subsequently took over a mill located in Ballyhenry townland, from which the village named Mossley emerged.


ROCKY ROAD

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Re: New Barnsley?
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2019, 07:23:53 AM »
A brilliant bit of detective work, CMcG!  I've looked through the online Street Directories at PRONI and indeed New Barnsley is connected to the Whiterock Bleaching Company.