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Coordinates: 54°04′27″N 4°39′14″W / 54.074167, -4.653889
Castletown
Manx: Balley Chashtal
Castle Rushen
Castle Rushen seen across Castletown Harbour at low tide.



Isle of Man location map
Red pog.svg
Castletown

Red pog.svg Castletown shown within the Isle of Man
Population 3,109 (Isle of Man census 2006)[1]
OS grid reference SC263675
    - Douglas  8.9 miles (14 km) ENE 
Parish Malew
Sheading Rushen
Crown dependency Isle of Man
Post town ISLE OF MAN
Postcode district IM9
Dialling code 01624
Police Isle of Man
Fire Isle of Man
Ambulance Isle of Man
House of Keys Castletown
List of places: Isle of Man

Castletown (Manx: Balley Chashtal, pronounced [ˈbalʲə ˈxaʃtʲəl]) is a town geographically within the Malew parish of the Isle of Man but administered separately. Lying at the south of the island, it is the former Manx capital. The centre of town is dominated by Castle Rushen, a well-preserved castle.

HistoryEdit

Castletown is the former capital of the Isle of Man and site of Tynwald and can trace its roots back to 1090. The town has narrow streets and small fishing cottages. Fishing boats still continue to go out to fish from the harbour. Commercial traffic to the port ended in the 1970s, although there has been an ongoing expansion of finance and industrial businesses in the area.[2]

The last person to be hanged on the Isle of Man was John Kewish in Castletown at Castle Rushen on 1 August 1872. In 1874, the House of Keys moved from Castletown to Douglas.[3] The first telephones appeared in Castletown in 1901.

PoliticsEdit

Castletown is, along with Douglas, Peel and Ramsey, one of four town local authorities. They were all designated as towns by the Town Act 1852. Castletown became a local authority in 1883. It is also a House of Keys constituency, electing one Member of the House of Keys (MHK). The current MHK is Tony Brown who was elected in the Manx general election, 2006 and who is also the Chief Minister of the Isle of Man.

DemographicsEdit

  • The Isle of Man census 2006 lists the parish population as 3,109[1]
  • The 2001 census revealed a parish population of 3,100 in 2001.
  • It is the fourth largest town on the island.
  • It was the island's capital until deposed by Douglas in 1864.

GeographyEdit

Castletown Aerial View - Isle of Man - kingsley - 30-APR-09

Aerial View (from the west)

The town lies on the NW side of Castletown Bay. The opposite shore of the bay is the west coast of the distinctively-shaped Langness Peninsula and the hamlet of Derbyhaven. To the north-east is the village of Ballasalla, to the north-west the villages of Ballabeg and Colby and to the west Port St. Mary and Port Erin. The A3 road connects Castletown with Ramsey via Douglas and the A5 road (also known as New Castletown Road as opposed to the Old Castletown Road which takes a more rural route nearer the coast) connects the town with Douglas to the north-east and Port Erin to the west. The A25 road was the historical route to Douglas and is now bypassed by the A5. The southern end of the Millennium Way long-distance footpath is at Castletown.

TransportEdit

Castletown station - geograph.org.uk - 483407

Locomotive No. 4 Loch Approaching Castletown Station (1978)

Buses to Douglas, Port St. Mary and Port Erin (Nos. 1, 2, 11 and 12) run about every 20 minutes on weekdays: the route is the island's busiest. There are also occasional buses to Peel (Service No. 8) via Foxdale; all these buses are within the island's transport network Bus Vannin The town is also served by Castletown Railway Station on the Isle of Man Railway (IMR), a 3 ft narrow gauge steam-operated railway from Douglas to Castletown and Port Erin. The station is on the NE edge of the town next to Poulsom Park, and was at one time used to transport beer from the Castletown Brewery as well as cattle and other livestock; remnants of the cattle dock are still visible at the station. The island's only commercial airport, Ronaldsway Airport is about 1 km NE of the town. There are free electric car charging stations available in a nearby car park.

EducationEdit

Sunset, King William's College - geograph.org.uk - 24248

Sunset Over King William's College

King William's College is an independent school. Founded in 1668 with funds from the Bishop Barrow Trust, it opened in 1833 with 46 boys. It is now co-educational, with about 500 pupils. The college has two sites in the town: the main estate is near the shore of Castletown Bay at the end of the main airport runway, and the Buchan School, the College's junior school, is in the Westhill area of Castletown, about two km from the main campus. Other schools are: Castle Rushen High School, a co-educational secondary state school in the SW of the town; and one primary school, Victoria Road School, originally opened as a boys' school in 1895, with a girls' school in Hope Street.[4]. The old grammar school in the town, which later became a chapel, is now an exhibit of a Victorian period schoolroom, part of the Story Of Mann. This is open to the public between Easter and November and can be found close to the castle and the Old House Of Keys.

ReligionEdit

Birmingham Citadel Band, Castletown, Isle of Man - geograph.org.uk - 175361

Birmingham Citadel Band
Old St. Mary's Church (Background)

There are three churches in the town. Castletown Methodist Church on Arbory Street, founded in 1932, is part of the Methodist Church in the Isle of Man, which in turn is part of the British Methodist Connexion. St. Mary’s on the Harbour on Hope Street is the Church of England Church for the Parish of Castletown in the Diocese of Sodor and Man. The church building was consecrated as a church in 1985 when the congregation moved from the Garrison Church in Castletown Square.[5] St Mary's Roman Catholic Church on Bowling Green Road, built in the 1820s, it was the first post-reformation Catholic Church to be built on the island.[6]. On the town square is Old St. Mary's Church which is now office accommodation. It once had a spire, but this was lost in the early 1900s. The "new" St. Mary's on the harbour replaced this church. Further afield is Malew Church, 2 km north of the town on the A4 road towards St John's. This has its own graveyard, unlike the churches in the town. There is also a private chapel at King William's College.

SportEdit

Castletown golf course - geograph.org.uk - 120357

Castletown Golf Links

The town has a thriving sports community, including Castletown Metropolitan F.C. who play in the Isle of Man Football League and are based at the Castletown Football Stadium, Malew Road. They are one of the most successful clubs on the island, having been League champions eight times and won the Manx F.A. Cup seven times.[7][8] There are two Rugby union football clubs in the town, Castletown R.U.F.C. who are based at Poulsom Park and Southern Nomads R.U.F.C. who are based at King William's College. They both play in the Manx Shield. Castletown cricket club is based at King William's College and is a member of the Isle of Man Cricket Association.[9] Castletown Golf & Country Club is located on the Langness Peninsula, Derbyhaven. The Billown Circuit motor cycling course has its start line in the town. Castletown Bowling Club is located at The Crofts.[10] Next to the bowling green is Castletown Lawn Tennis Club. [11] Southern Swimming Pool is a 25 metre, five lane Short course pool.[12]

World Championship Tin Bath RacesEdit

Castletown Harbour is the venue for the annual World Tinbath Championship which has been held every year since 1972 and is organised by the Castletown Ale Drinkers.

2011 Commonwealth Youth GamesEdit

The closing ceremony of the 2011 Commonwealth Youth Games is due to be held in Castletown on 12 September 2011.[13]

LandmarksEdit

Old House of Keys

The Old House Of Keys
Off Castletown Square
Open Seasonally By
Manx National Heritage

  • The Old Grammar School was originally built as a chapel about 1190 - 1230 and is located in the harbour to the rear of the town square at the side of a large car park. The building stopped being a school in the 1930s and is now a museum exhibit open seasonally in connection with the other Story Of Mann sites in the town.[14]
  • The Nautical Museum (also known as The Peggy Story in recent times) opened in 1951; the main focus of the museum is an 18th century yacht, the Peggy, housed in the boat cellar, where she has been since the 19th century. She had been bricked up and forgotten before being rediscovered by workmen.[15]
  • The Museum Of Witchcraft was in existence in the town for a short period at the Witches Mill which has since been redeveloped as apartments. It was operated by the well-known self-proclaimed witch Gerald Gardner who ran it under the title Folklore Center of Superstition and Witchcraft becoming a familiar figure in the town.
  • The Railway Station was constructed in 1902 from locally sourced limestone from Scarlett Point and has been extensively refurbished in recent times, notably being overhauled in 1994 to original form. It is open seasonally and many people's first encounter with the town is their arrival at the station which is a short walk from the centre.

Town ArchitectureEdit

Much of the attraction of Castletown is in the quality of its period buildings, many constructed of the local silver-grey limestone. The layout of the town centre still retains its early arrangement, echoing the cluster of houses around the military parade ground, which still has its alternative use as market place. The interested visitor can still identify the original building plots, and the crofts attached to them, which have given their name to a residential area close to the town centre.

Notable peopleEdit

MHKs and electionsEdit

Year Election Turnout Candidates Elected Notes
1903

General Election

?

1919

By Election

?

1919

General Election

Unopposed

1924

General Election

Unopposed

1929

General Election

Unopposed

1934

General Election

Unopposed

1946

General Election

?

1951

General Election

?

1956

General Election

?

1960

By Election

?

Death of Sir Joseph David Qualtrough CBE

1971

General Election

?

1981

General Election

?

?

1986

General Election

67.4%

1991

General Election

Elected Unopposed

1996

General Election

67.2%

  • Tony Brown (876 votes)
  • Elsie Pickard (467 votes)
  • Carol Edge (102 votes)
2001

General Election

Elected Unopposed

2006

General Election

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Isle of Man Census 2006 Summary Results" (PDF). Economic Affairs Division, Isle of Man Treasury. 2006. pp. 3. http://www.gov.im/lib/docs/treasury/economic/census/isleofmancensusreport2006.pdf. Retrieved 2008-09-28. 
  2. ^ "Castletown". Isle of Man Guide. http://www.iomguide.com/castletown.php. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 
  3. ^ "Old House of Keys". Isle of Man Guide. http://www.iomguide.com/oldhouseofkeys.php. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 
  4. ^ "Victoria Road School". castletown.org. http://www.castletown.org.im/community/sch_victoriad.html. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 
  5. ^ "Castletown Parish Church St. Mary's on the Harbour". castletown.org. http://www.castletown.org.im/community/churches_stmoth.html. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 
  6. ^ "St Mary's Catholic Church". castletown.org. http://www.castletown.org.im/community/churches_stm_rc.html. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 
  7. ^ "Isle of Man 1897/98 and 1970/71-1994/95". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. 2007-05-29. http://www.rsssf.com/tablesm/manx1898.html. Retrieved 2008-09-08. 
  8. ^ "Isle of Man List of Cup Winners". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. 2008-06-08. http://www.rsssf.com/tablesm/manxcuphist.html. Retrieved 2008-09-10. 
  9. ^ "IOMCA Member Clubs". Isle of Man Cricket Association. http://icc-europe.org/ISLEOFMAN/DATABASE/ADMIN/clubs.shtml. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 
  10. ^ "Castletown Bowling Club". castletown.org. http://www.castletown.org.im/community/bowling_club.html. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 
  11. ^ "Castletown Lawn Tennis Club". castletown.org. http://castletownlawntennisclub.webs.com/. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 
  12. ^ "Southern Swimming Pool". castletown.org. http://www.castletown.org.im/community/pool.html. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 
  13. ^ "2011 venues". 2011 Commonwealth Youth Games. http://cyg2011.com/index.php/venues. Retrieved 2008-09-21. 
  14. ^ "Old Grammar School". castletown.org. http://www.castletown.org.im/heritage/grammar_school.html. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 
  15. ^ "Nautical museum". castletown.org. http://www.castletown.org.im/heritage/nautical_museum.html. Retrieved 2008-09-29. 

External linksEdit


This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Castletown, Isle of Man. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.

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