Saintfield (historically called Tawnaghneeve or similar) is a village and civil parish in County Down, Northern Ireland. It is about halfway between Belfast and Downpatrick on the A7 road. It had a population of 3,381 in the 2011 Census. Saintfield's population is made up mostly of commuters working in both south and central Belfast, which is about 11 miles away. The population of the surrounding countryside is mostly involved in farming.
Running east to west across the A7 is the B6 road, and to the west of this crossroads is Main Street, which takes one towards Lisburn and Ballynahinch, and to the east is Station Road which takes one towards Killyleagh.
Saintfield was originally an early 17th-century settlement, from which the parish church survives. The present town form of Saintfield dates back to the early 18th century and the establishment of linen manufacturing and other trades by the Price family. The village had a number of corn, flour and flax mills, the remains of which are visible today, and has retained a tradition of textile manufacture through Saintfield Yarns. The architectural and historic significance of the town centre is reflected in its designation as a Conservation Area in 1997.
The Society of United Irishmen launched a rebellion in 1798, which began in Leinster and quickly spread to Ulster. The United Irishmen had been founded in 1791 by liberal Protestants in Belfast. Its goal was to unite Catholics and Protestants and make Ireland an independent republic. Although its membership in the South was mainly Catholic, most of its leaders and members in northeast Ulster were Protestant Presbyterians. On 9 June 1798, a British force was ambushed in a wood near Saintfield. About 100 men were killed altogether, and the United Irishmen emerged victorious. The headstones of men who were killed in this battle can be seen near the river at the bottom of the 1st Presbyterian Church graveyard.