Over 200 years of tourism in Ballycotton

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During the June Bank Holiday weekend, the village of Ballycotton celebrates its link with the sea during its Seafood and Shanty Festival. Anybody going there should consider parking outside the village and walking along its length to the pier to enjoy the festivities.

People have been going to Ballycotton for some time to enjoy the sea air and the views as well as the seafood, often brought directly from the boats moored at the pier. Our usual impression is that people went to Ballycotton from the end of the 1700s or very early 1800s to seek the unpolluted sea air, as a forlorn relief from consumption or TB. In fact, the height of the tourism business in Ballycotton was in the later 19th century and early 20th century.

In fact, the earliest account of tourists or visitors to Ballycotton can be traced to the early to mid-1740s! It comes from an autobiography by John Carteret Pilkington: The Real Story of John Carteret Pilkington written by himself, which was published in London in 1760, about twenty years after his visit to Ballycotton. Pilkington’s arrival in Ballycotton was quite dramatic too!

Read more inside the latest issue of Midleton & District News.