Palace Barracks, Holywood is a British Army installation in Holywood, County Down, Northern Ireland.

Palace Barracks
Palace Barracks
Palace Barracks is located in Northern Ireland
Palace Barracks
Palace Barracks
Location within Northern Ireland
Coordinates54°37′25″N 05°48′50″W / 54.62361°N 5.81389°W / 54.62361; -5.81389
Site information
OwnerMinistry of Defence
Operator British Army
Site history
In use1886 – present
Garrison information
Occupants1st Battalion, Ranger Regiment

History Edit

Palace Barracks occupies the site of a palatial house known as "Ardtullagh", the home of the Bishop of Down, Connor and Dromore until it was bought by the UK War Office in 1886.[1]

In 1933, five children of Lance Corporal Harry Poole and his wife, Mary, lost their lives from asphyxiation following gas poisoning in the married quarters of the barracks.[2]

During the roughly three decades of "The Troubles" in Northern Ireland, the barracks served as the home base for battalions rotating through the province, especially those on a two-year "accompanied" tour with their families. A wide variety of facilities are available for soldiers to use off duty, including a swimming pool, squash courts, saunas, bars and a gymnasium.[3]

Palace Barracks became the Regimental Headquarters of the Royal Irish Regiment in 2008.[4]

In March 2010, it was the site of a bombing.[5] An elderly man was blown off his feet and had to be treated in hospital. The bomb was allegedly driven towards the base in a hijacked taxi.[6] The Real IRA claimed responsibility for the attack.[7]

In 2014, it became the base for the Royal Scots Borderers, 1st Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Scotland.[8]

Current units Edit

Current units stationed at the camp include:

British Army Edit

Royal Navy Edit

Security Service Edit

  • Northern Ireland Headquarters[14]

Palace Barracks is the declared headquarters of the MI5 for their investigations into Northern Ireland-related terrorism.[15]

References Edit

  1. ^ "The History of the Culloden Estate and Spa" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 November 2013. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
  2. ^ "Palace Barracks Memorial Garden". Archived from the original on 7 April 2014. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
  3. ^ "Army Base Palace Barracks," Domesday Reloaded, BBC website.
  4. ^ "Royal Irish Regiment". Royal Irish Rangers. Retrieved 2 December 2022.
  5. ^ Real IRA Claims Barracks Car Bomb Blast Sky News, 12 April 2010.
  6. ^ Sharrock, David (12 April 2010). "Car bomb explodes near MI5 base in Belfast". The Times. London, UK. Retrieved 4 May 2010.
  7. ^ "Real IRA admits NI MI5 base bomb". BBC News. 12 April 2010. Archived from the original on 26 August 2017. Retrieved 4 May 2010.
  8. ^ "Families' anger as Royal Scots Borderers moved". The Scotsman. 7 March 2013. Retrieved 2 May 2016.
  9. ^ "Belfast-based 1 Scots to lead Army's new Ranger Regiment". Belfast Telegraph. 25 November 2021. Retrieved 9 December 2021.
  10. ^ "Future Soldier Guide" (PDF). 25 November 2021. p. 70. Retrieved 9 December 2021.
  11. ^ "152 (North Irish) Regiment RLC look back on 2016". Reserve Forces & Cadets Association Northern Ireland. Retrieved 24 November 2017.
  12. ^ "Royal Irish Regiment". Retrieved 24 February 2021.
  13. ^ "Find a Unit - RFCA NI". Retrieved 24 February 2021.
  14. ^ "Palace Barracks explosion: Major review of security ordered at MI5 base in wake of bomb blast". Belfast Telegraph. 14 August 2015. Retrieved 24 February 2021.
  15. ^ "MI5 in Northern Ireland". The Security Service. Retrieved 27 April 2018.