A couple of years ago Magherafelt was named as one of the best places to live in Northern Ireland by a national newspaper.
Judges said it was a “supremely practical choice for families”, thanks to its convenient central location, rapidly improving town centre and excellent schools.
But Magherafelt residents don't need a team of judges to tell them what they’ve known for years.
Here are 17 things only Magherafelt people know - or should know - about the town: anecdotes and memories that make up a shared community.
1. Pronouncing Magh-er-a-felt
There are different ways of pronouncing Magh-er-a-felt - some would say Mara-felt or Mackerafelt, and so on. It's often a source of amusement for those who live there and call it home. Photo: National World
2. The Picture House
Although it's now closed, the cinema - or 'The Picture House' as locals referred to it regardless of what it was named over the years - was THE entertainment venue growing up in the town. Opened before the Second World War, it often attracted long queues winding along Queen Street if there was a popular or controversial movie showing. Next door was Dinny Bradley's sweet shop where you stocked up on supplies before heading into The Picture House darkness. Photo: Contributed
3. Head to Bryson's for a good band
Bryson's in Garden Street was the place to head on a Thursday night to hear a good band or solo performer. Progressive rock, blues and folk music lovers were well catered for. Many top acts appeared including the guitarist Henry McCullough, who performed at the Woodstock Festival. Going back in time there was the Town Hall, where the public library is today. Weekly dances were held and the occasional star act performer, such as comedian Frankie Howerd, took to the stage. The Arches Hotel in the town centre for discos and dance bands; St John's Hall, King Street, which was a popular venue for pantomines; The Burnside Hall (FE College) for the odd dance, and the Johnston Hall at the Rainey School for highbrow drama. Photo: National World
4. The Market Yard escape
When our Market Yard was in full swing, Magherafelt residents knew to avoid the town centre. Back then Rainey Street was lined with tractors and cattle trucks and the street plastered in running cow dung and straw. The danger arose when a cow, or two, made a bid for freedom and charged from the Yard up towards the town centre pursued by shouting farmers in long coats and a poor policeman holding on to his cap. Photo: Google