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Scrabo Hill 160m,
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Belfast Hills Area   E: Belfast Hills East Subarea
Place count in area: 9, OSI/LPS Maps: 15, 20, 21 
Highest place:
Divis, 478m
Maximum height for area: 478 metres,     Maximum prominence for area: 380 metres,

Places in area Belfast Hills:
E: Belfast Hills East:   Cairngaver 217mOuley Hill 186mScrabo Hill 160m
N: Belfast Hills North:   Carnmoney Hill 231.1mCave Hill 368mDivis 478mSlievetrue 312m
SE: Strangford & Portaferry:   Ballywhite Hill 101mCastlemahon Mountain 128m

Note: this list of places includes island features such as summits, but not islands as such.
Rating graphic.
Scrabo Hill Hill Screabach A name in Irish Ir. Screabach [PNNI 2], ‘thinly covered or stony ground’ Down County in NI and in Ulster Province, in Local/Historical/Cultural List, Sandstone Bedrock

Height: 160m OS 1:50k Mapsheet: 15,21 Grid Reference: J47756 72621
Place visited by 51 members. Recently by: gerrym, Paddym99, garybuz, Combat_Monkey, eflanaga, paddyhillsbagger, sdmckee, Andy1287, Kirsty, Matrim, Vfslb1904, dregish, Carolyn105, PPruzina, Hoverla
I have visited this place: NO (You need to be a logged-in member to change this.)

Longitude: -5.715574, Latitude: 54.580252 , Easting: 347756, Northing: 372621 Prominence: 97m,  Isolation: 4.6km
ITM: 747672 872616,   GPS IDs, 6 char: ScrbHl, 10 char: Scrabo Hil
Bedrock type: Sandstone, ()

Scrabo Hill offers magnificent views of North Down, including Strangford Lough and the Ards Peninsula. It was long considered a fairy hill with its own fairy guardian named Mac an Eantoin. Scrabo Tower, designed by Sir Charles Lanyon, was built on the summit of the hill as a memorial to the third Marquis of Londonderry. With its turrets, it is prominent in views around Belfast and North Down. A hill-fort is situated on the top of this prominent hill and traces of a number of hut-groups can be seen below the summit (Archaeological Survey of County Down 147, 179). The quarries at Scrabo are amongst the most important in Ulster and are of considerable antiquity since Grey Abbey was built with Scrabo sandstone in the late 12th century. The Natural Stone Database ( lists no less than 109 historic buildings built with Scrabo sandstone, including Belfast Castle, Belfast Royal Academy and the Albert Clock.   Scrabo Hill is the 1458th highest place in Ireland.

COMMENTS for Scrabo Hill (Screabach) 1 of 1  
Follow this place's comments Picture about mountain Scrabo Hill (<i>Screabach</i>) in area Belfast Hills, Ireland
Picture: Scrabo Tower at the summit
Towering views over north Down and beyond
by kernowclimber  6 Jul 2015
Scrabo Hill, an AONB, rises dramatically above the town of Newtownards and the surrounding plain. The view from the hill is exceptional, extending across Strangford Lough to the Mourne Mountains, the Isle of Man and the Scottish coast. It has been a place of human habitation from the Mesolithic through the Bronze and Iron Ages; the density and number of hut circles and the remains of an extensive hill fort indicate that it may have been one of the largest communal settlements in Ireland.

Scrabo is famous for its sandstone which has been exploited in a number of quarries designated an Area of Special Scientific Interest. The sandstone formed during the Triassic (160-190 million years ago), when this part of Ireland lay at the fringes of a vast desert; the climate was hot and punctuated by periods of torrential rain that caused severe erosion, depositing enormous quantities of sand in rivers and shallow lakes which later became rock. During the Tertiary, these sandstones were heated and intruded by a dolerite sill which formed a hard cap on the crag and tail of Scrabo Hill, protecting the sandstone from erosion, and scouring by later ice sheets.

Today, the hill is part of the Scrabo Country Park and is marked by an iconic tower at its summit. Built to the design of Charles Lanyon and W H Lynn, and stylistically similar to a Scottish watch tower, it was erected in 1857 and financed by local people to commemorate Charles William Stewart, 3rd Marquis of Londonderry, as a mark of their gratitude for his efforts in alleviating poverty during the famine. Costing over £3,000, the tower is 41 metres high; its walls, over a metre thick, are constructed of Scrabo dolerite. The roof, stairs, quoins and window dressings are of Scrabo sandstone.

Lying unoccupied after the last tenants left in 1966, the tower deteriorated until the DoE (NI) undertook a programme of structural and remedial works. In 1983 it opened to the public during the summer months housing a centre for the Countryside and Wildlife Branch of the DoE and contained a permanent exhibition about the Country Park and the surrounding countryside. Visitors were able to climb the 122 steps to a viewing platform at the top of the tower for unsurpassed panoramic vistas. However, in April 2014 the tower was closed to the public on safety grounds following water damage to its electrical system.

From the Newtownards or the Comber bypass, follow the signs for Scrabo Country Park and drive uphill to its main car park. The summit can be reached in a few minutes by following a steep tarmac track uphill. Follow the 3.7 km circular route exploring the old sandstone quarries to lengthen your visit. Linkback:
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Some mapping:
Open Street Map
(Various variations used.)
British summit data courtesy:
Database of British & Irish Hills
(Creative Commons Licence), a Hill-walking Website for the island of Ireland. 2400 Summiteers, 1480 Contributors, maintainer of lists: Arderins, Vandeleur-Lynams, Highest Hundred, County Highpoints etc