carnlough has welcomed the first-ever gathering of the Honourable Clan MacAulay outside of Scottish soil.
The successful three-day event – held in the Londonderry Arms Hotel – was hosted by Ballygally man Laurence McAuley, the clan commissioner for Northern Ireland.
The gathering, which occurs every two years, included a formal clan banquet, clan ceilidh and visits to MacAulay historical sites of interest along the Antrim Coast and Glens.
It attracted more than 100 members of the McAuley clan from far and wide, with overseas guests from the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, England and of course Scotland to join the many McAuleys from across Northern Ireland in the spirit of kinship.
Dignitaries included clan chieftain Hector MacAulay from Crieff, Perthshire, and Lord Donald and Lady Mary MacAulay of Bragar, Edinburgh (Honorary Chieftain of Isle of Lewis).
Amongst the other notable McAuleys who attended included local boxing hero Dave ‘Boy’ McAuley, Canadian born Emmy award-winning composer and record producer Matthew McCauley and successful local author Tony Macaulay.
McAuley is among the 100 most common surnames in Ireland, if the many variations of the name – which include – McCauley, MacAulay, McCawley, McGauley, McCowley, McColley, Macauley, Cawley, Magawley, McCooley, Gawley are included.
In Co Antrim alone there are hundreds of MacAuleys, most of them believed to be of Scottish ancestry.