Antrim Coast Road Memorial – Larne, Northern Ireland - Atlas Obscura
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Larne, Northern Ireland

Antrim Coast Road Memorial

An unassuming tribute to engineer William Bald and the workers who built one of Europe's most scenic coastal roads.  

People around the world have heard of the Antrim Coast Road, a ribbon of asphalt that winds through breathtaking scenery. But far fewer are aware of the people who made the road happen. This small, unassuming memorial seeks to change that.

This stone sculpture was erected in memory of William Bald, the engineer responsible for building the world-famous road, and the men of the Glens of Antrim who helped him. Their work has had an ever-lasting impact on the region, bringing millions of tourists to the area since its opening and making it one of the most scenic coastal routes in Europe.

The Antrim Coast Road was built between 1832 and 1842 to open up the Glens of Antrim and provide much-need jobs in the area. At a cost of only £37,140 it makes you realize how much of a bargain this project was, as if it were done today it’s been estimated it would be priced at around £370 million.

And no, the “Men of the Glynnes” is not a spelling mistake, but instead another alternative name for the “Men of the Glens.” The sculpture sits just outside the edge of Larne Town Park on the Coast Road, around about a half mile before the Black Arch. It overlooks the Irish Sea and Larne Lough, with views of Larne Harbor and the Chaine Memorial Tower.

Know Before You Go

The best way to get to it is to drive up the Old Glenarm Road to the start of the Coast Road and park at the small car park on the left. The stone sculpture is on the other side of the road.

You can also walk from Main Street up the Old Glenarm Road, past the entrance to Larne Town Park and Chaine’s Park to the start of the Coast Road, where you'll find the stone sculpture on the right hand side of the road next to a picnic table and picturesque view.