Website for Portrush



                 The Amphitheatre                                                  Barry's Fun Ride                                              Old Harbour and Kerr Street

Like most small coastal towns and villages Portrush developed and expanded from a safe harbour and fishing port.  It remained like this until the early 19th century when in parallel to the industrial revolution, its full potential as a port was realized. Portrush then became a  major shipping and commercial focus along the north coast. One hundred years ago you would  have seen coastal schooners, square riggers, steam ships and fishing smacks plying in and out of the harbour. Timber came from America, potatoes went to Glasgow, grain went to  Cork, fish came in and went to Belfast, coal, bauxite and other raw materials all came and went from the busy quayside. The harbour was used by fishermen from near and far to land their catches or shelter from storms, it is known that Breton and Spanish fishermen were frequent visitors coming here seasonally to catch dogfish and rays. Another factor which enhanced the fortunes of Portrush  was its close proximity to the Giants Causeway. The expanding rail network reached here in 1855 when the Ballymena, Ballymoney, Coleraine and Portrush Junction Railway Company  built a railway line and terminus. Then came a period of  prosperity which saw the town become a major destination for holidaymakers from all over Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales.