In the small seaside town of Whitehead, history is a huge part of the town’s cultural identity. It was known as a Victorian railway village and is home to Victorian and Edwardian buildings, the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland, steam trains, and of course, this Victorian walkway.
At the Beach Road end of the Whitehead Train Station is a small footbridge that dates back to the Victorian era. The railway structure is an important historic monument and has been given a B1 grade to protect it from destruction, or potential harm from construction.
The walkway was designed by the Walter Macfarlane & Co Iron Founders based at the Saracen Foundry in Glasgow, Scotland. During the Victorian age, Whitehead was a popular seaside destination. People from Belfast would flock to the Whitehead seaside and visit popular paths such as Blackhead Path and The Gobbins in Islandmagee.
Today, the Victorian walkway is still as popular as ever, as tourists and locals frequently use it to cross the railway line to go for a walk along Whitehead Promenade, or to visit the Victorian Street Fair in November. With its many reminders of an era long gone, the Victorian-era will always front-and-center in the history of Whitehead.
Know Before You Go
The best way to travel to the site is to take a train to Whitehead and then walk to the end of the platform towards Beach Road where this historic walkway is located.
If traveling by car, you can park at the Beach Road Nature Reserve car park opposite the boathouse in Whitehead. Then walk up Beach Road for five minutes towards the Whitehead Train Station.