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Irish: Camloch
County Armagh
Cam Lough - - 267458.jpg
Grid reference: J0326
Location: 54°10’50"N, 6°24’39"W
Population: 1,081  (2011)
Post town: Newry
Postcode: BT35
Local Government
Council: Newry, Mourne and Down
Newry & Armagh

Camlough is a small village in County Armagh, near Bessbrook and the slopes of the Ring of Gullion. In the 2011 Census it had a recorded population of 1,081.[1]

Places of interest

  • Ballykeel Dolmen and Cairn are south west of Camlough, at the western foot of Slieve Gullion.[2] The dolmen is an example of a portal dolmen and is made up of two portal stones with a sill between, and a lower backstone supporting a huge capstone.


  • Feile Chamlocha is the annual festival held in Camlough in the summer months including Camlough Festival and the Crooked Lake Triathlon
  • Crooked Lake Triathlon is an annual triathlon held in Camlough in June.
  • Camlough Lake Water Festival CLWF is home to Irelands only outdoor / open water swimming festival over a weekend in August. As well as introductory swimming events the lake also hosts the National 5k & 10k swims for Swim Ireland. Other events include:
  • Lord & Lady of the Lake 2.4km
  • Night Swim
  • Coffee Dock Swim
  • Try a Tri
  • 1k swim
  • Kids & adults duathalon (swim run)


Open Water / Marathon Swimming Since breaking the Open Water Relay Guinness World Record the lake has been a prominent training ground for Triathletes and Open Water Swimmers. Local Swimmer and CLWF Chairman Padraig Mallon then went on to complete the English and North Channel in the same year (only 3rd person to ever do so). His sister Colleen Mallon went on to break the Irish record for crossing the North Channel in 2014 and Keith Garry completed the English Channel in 2014. The area has also produced 2 successful relay teams crossing the North Channel and world class ice swimmers.

Camlough Rovers F.C. is the local football team, playing in the Mid-Ulster Football League.

Camloch is famous for its links with the Gaelic Athletic Association. The village hosts two Gaelic football clubs. St Patrick's Carrickcruppen GFC has won four Senior county championships; Shane O'Neill's GAC, a continuation of the first Camloch club (William O'Brien's, founded in 1888), has won two Senior and three Junior titles.

Craobh Rua Camloch hurling club was established in 1991 in the Camlough and Bessbrook areas of South Armagh. As hurling had not been played in the area in some 40 years, the club received some help from Armagh Hurling Board chairman, Jimmy Carlisle, who helped set up coaching courses for the children and their mentors. Over its first ten years the club has successfully fielded teams at under 12, under 14, under 16 and since 2010 at under 8, minor and senior levels. They play their home games at Dunster Park on High Street, Derrymore.

In 2010 the Seniors reached the Junior Championship Final and subsequently made it to the semi-final of the Ulster championship. The Under 14s won the 2010 Championship and the Feile, and represented County Armagh in the All Ireland Feile in Ennis, where they reached the semi-final. There are currently three Craobh Rua players representing Armagh at senior inter-county level, Fiachra Bradley, Micheal Garvey and Ryan Lewis.

World Record

A Guinness World Record for the longest open water relay swim was broken by a team of intrepid swimmers at Camlough Lake in South Armagh on Saturday 19 September 2009.[3] The group beat the world record for a 'continuous long distance relay swim' after embarking on the world beating attempt over a week before.

Two hundred swimmers from across Ireland took part in the challenge. The previous record was 480 km; Camlough set the record at 680 km.