At the heart of Ardglass is one of Northern Ireland's main fishing harbours - home port to over 30 fishing vessels and main hub for Northern Ireland’s pelagic fish processing industry. While this natural deep water harbour has been used for over 3,000, years construction of the current port began in the early 19th Century. An extension was begun in the 1830s but disaster occurred in 1838 when the new pier and lighthouse felt the brunt of a storm and fell into the harbour. After many years the pier was rebuilt and was extended again in the late 20th Century. Considerable development of the harbour has taken place in recent years with the construction of a new fishmarket and delivery of new ice making plant. Ardglass also has an attractive marina with approximately 80 berths which are used by both local and visiting yachts.

Kilkeel is a very busy fishing port located in the heart of the Mourne Country on the east coast of Northern Ireland. The harbour was first started in the 1850s and a pier was built in 1868 with further improvements in 1872. The harbour has grown since then and developed until the recent introduction of pontoons for the smaller fishing boats. The harbour at Kilkeel bustles with the province's largest fleet, and is busiest during landings and in the fishmarket auction time. There are fish-processing factories, trawler repair and new build facilities dotted around the harbour.

Portavogie harbour is located on the east coast of the Ards Peninsula and derives its name from Port an Bhogaigh, which translated means 'harbour of the bog'! This busy commercial fishing port has a large fleet of trawlers which provide a fascinating sight with daily comings and goings. Portavogie is famous for its prawns and herring. A pier was built at Portavogie in 1906. This pier was not a success as it had no weather protection. A new harbour was constructed in 1955. The harbour was further developed in 1975 and 1985, doubling the size, deepening the basin, providing a market area and ice making machinery.

Services

Ice

The Authority has Ice Makers in all of its harbours.

Slipway

Slipway facilities are available in Kilkeel and Portavogie. Kilkeel has 3 slips and Portavogie has 1. At this time there are no slipway facilities in Ardglass.

Pontoon Berths

Pontoons have been installed in Kilkeel and Portavogie to facilitate access to vessels by small boat owners.

Utilities

"Electricity and Water is available in all three Harbours. Meters are available and cards are available from Harbour Offices during working hours.
  • Eddie has been Harbour Master at Portavogie since 2012. He leads a team of 3 staff.

    Eddie Robinson, Portavogie Harbour

  • John Smyth has been Harbour Master in Ardglass since 1988.

    John Smyth, Ardglass Harbour

  • Michael Young has been Harbour Master in Kilkeel since 1999. He leads a team of 7 staff.

    Michael Young, Kilkeel Harbour

John Smyth – 30 years service with the Authority

John Smyth Harbour Master, Ardglass has just completed 30 years of dedicated service. Terry Jarvis NIFHA chairman was along with other team members delighted to have the opportunity to say thank-you to John at a small presentation to mark this event.

Also included in the picture are from left to right: Rosemary Scott, David Lindsay, Kevin Quigley (CEO), Belinda McCaughey, John Smyth, Richard Fitzpatrick, Terry Jarvis, Eddie Robinson, Fred Milligan and Wendy Campbell.

Ardglass Harbour - 19 April 2018

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3 days ago

NIFHA

John Smyth Harbour Master Ardglass has just completed 30 years of dedicated service. Terry Jarvis NIFHA chairman was along with other team members delighted to have the opportunity to say thank-you to John at a small presentation to mark this event. ... See MoreSee Less

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3 days ago

NIFHA

The P5 pupils from St Colman’s Primary School, Kilkeel learn about Health & Safety as part of Rosemary’s introduction to NIFHA’s Happy Harbours programme. They also enjoyed playing ‘The Journey of a Fish Finger’ game which follows the journey of a cod until it reaches their plates as a fish finger. The children will now work through the programme with their teacher Mr McConville before visiting Kilkeel Harbour in June. ... See MoreSee Less

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1 week ago

NIFHA

It’s that time of the year again when NIFHA once again launches its ‘Happy Harbours’ school education programme.
We are delighted that all 5 primary schools, local to our harbours are keen to continue their participation in what will be our 3rd year of running this successful programme.
Rosemary Scott from NIFHA visited the P4 class, at Portavogie Primary School recently, on the first of her school visits to introduce the children to “Happy Harbours”.
The children will now go on to study the various topics with their teacher, Mrs Hughes which includes the use of specially designed games, such as “Safety First“ “Ropes and Ladders” and “Go Fishing”, to encourage learning through play.

We look forward to sharing our news and photos as we progress through each stage of the programme.
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2 weeks ago

NIFHA

Lifeboats to the rescue ! ... See MoreSee Less

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2 weeks ago

NIFHA

Taking ice aboard for another trip ... See MoreSee Less

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