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With all the discussion going on regarding proposed Department for Infrastructure changes to the layout of Newry City centre to facilitate social distancing and encourage more walking and cycling, thought there was no better time to produce a suggested route for a cycle/ walking route that would connect the entrance to Newry Canal Towpath beside WIN Business Park to Carlingford Lough Greenway at the entrance to the Albert Basin.

The proposed route.
The proposed route.

The suggested route embraces several Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Masterplans which have suggested a green lung for the city between Newry Canal and the Clanrye River. We have kept away from the walkway along Merchants Quay, specifically to contribute towards creating a new route in the city which would tie in with past Masterplan aims and give free access to all parts of the city.

The Newry City Centre Masterplan in October 2011 proposed a waterfront park between the two waterways all the way from Sugar Island to the Albert Basin "A key component of this would be the relocation of car parking away from canal and riverside locations, thereby freeing up space for parkland and recreational use. Alternative parking locations would be identified as part of masterplan proposals for gateway locations."

The Route

Our route travels from the Newry Canal towpath down Canal Quay to its junction with New Street where it takes left and then immediate right into Basin Quay, followed by an immediate left down Basin Walk and all the way down to Sugar Island.

From here it takes a route straight across to Bank Parade making use of the existing path between Newry Town Hall and the Sean Hollywood Arts Centre leading out on to Needham Bridge. On Needham Bridge it's straight across past Newry Bus Centre all the way down to Mill Street. Straight Across again through Canal Bank car park down to William Street and again straight across to the Carlingford Lough Greenway.

Benefits of the route

  • Within easy reach of Hill Street and Monaghan Street, the historic centres of Newry as well as perfect access to Newry Bus Centre and options onwards by bus and Rail
  • It passes iconic Newry buildings including Sands Mill, Riverside Church, Bank of Ireland and Newry Town Hall.
  • Removes cyclists and walkers from the traffic filled Merchant's Quay.
  • Generally navigates via a quieter route.


The route overall does not have any insurmountable challenges. Probably the most difficult part of it would be the Canal Quay section and the section passing Newry Bus Station.
Crossings are always a challenge but in several cases, specifically at Needham Bridge, Mill Street and William Street/ Bridge Street existing traffic lights could be relatively easily re-alligned to make crossings more straightforward.

Edit 26/5/20 - Addition

Present proposed plans for the new Theatre and Arts Facility at Newry Town Hall and Sean Hollywood Arts Centre would block access to the path at the rear for cyclists but walkers could use during opening hours. If this design proceeds the present footpath at the other side of the Town Hall would need to be used and adapted.

Click on images below and use the arrows to progress through the route.


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