The Saint Patrick Centre in Downpatrick is the starting point for any visitor who wishes to know more about Ireland’s patron saint.
The exhibition explores the legacy of Patrick, ancient and modern, and recalls the saint’s own story – in his own words. A series of interactive displays allow visitors to explore how Patrick's legacy developed in early Christian times and reveals the fabulous artwork and metalwork which was produced during this Golden Age. The exhibition also examines the major impact of Irish missionaries in Europe between the fifth and ninth centuries, a legacy which remains to this day.
The Ulster History Circle have erected a Blue Plaque at the centre dedicated to the Scholar, poet and bishop, Aodh Mac Aingil 1571-1626. Mac Aingil was tutor to the sons of Hugh O'Neill, and was sent as special messenger to the Court of Spain to solicit aid for the Ulster forces. He entered the Franciscan order, and in 1626 the Pope nominated him Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of all Ireland, but he died of a fever before he could return.