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It was founded in 545 AD by Finnian of Movilla as a monastery, which was named "Movilla," or, "Magh Bhile" in Irish, meaning "plain of the sacred tree," suggesting that the area had previously been inhabited by secular tribes. The monastery was raided and destroyed by the Vikings around 824, but a new Augustinian monastery was built here in the 12th Century. It, in turn, was also raided by Vikings. After many battles and raids, the town of today was founded by a Scottish aristocrat in 1605.
Today, Newtownards is known for its coastline, beautiful green-topped cliffs, natural beauty, historic buildings and homes, high population of Protestant and Catholic inhabitants, and as the location of Scrabo Tower.
People Born in Newtownards
Newtownards in People's Lives
Liam Neeson: I traveled here in 2008 to film scenes of the movie Five Minutes of Heaven.