Jail house to rock Carrick as new community centre

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The War Department told Carrick Borough Council that the town’s former county jail would make an “excellent community centre for dances and other social gatherings”.

The building, located behind the Town Hall, which had been used as an army supply depot for more than 50 years, was vacant in January 1959.

Carrick Mayor Alderman TJ Patterson said that the town was “rather short on accommodation for clubs and organisations”.

The town’s population that year was 8,600.

A report in the Larne Times noted that the jail’s condemned cell complete with a wooden bed and wooden pillow still existed.

The building still featured parquet flooring, heated rooms and an “enormous” glass covered courtyard surrounded by high walls. It also had seating for 1,500 people.

During the previous century, condemned men were led from their cells to be publicly hanged. Antrim Street was known as “Drop View Terrace”.

It was known as the county gaol for Antrim and was replaced by Crumlin Road jail.

An army spokesman said that the disposal of the building was “still under consideration”.