The Friary Surgery has evolved from a practice founded by Drs John and Sheelagh Woods at their home on Mall East in 1928. They were joined by Dr Dick O’Reilly when the NHS was founded in 1948, and later by their son, Dr Oliver Woods in 1963. The practice moved to a purpose built Armagh Health Centre in Dobbin Lane in1970.
Shortly after Dr John’s death in 1972, he was replaced by Dr Patrick Kellett, who had been the practice’s first GP registrar. Dr Dick’s son, Dr Garry O’Reilly became a partner in 1975, again having spent a year as a registrar. Dr Dick retired later the same year.
Another former registrar, Dr Maura Briscoe, became a partner in 1982. She left to take up a post in the Department of Health in 1991. Dr Sheelagh retired in 1989. Drs Ruth Reilly and Susan McNally joined the practice in 1992 and the practice was further expanded on the arrival of Dr Frances O’Hagan in 1997.
In 2000, the premises were rebuilt to cater for the increasing population and the ever-changing role of general practice in the new millennium. The title of The Friary Surgery was adopted in recognition of the nearby former Franciscan Abbey.
Having practised on The Mall, co-designed the original Armagh Health Centre, and coordinated the move to the present building, Dr Oliver Woods retired in 2000, and was replaced by Dr Garry’s daughter, Dr Roisin O’Reilly. Dr Edward Farnan replaced Dr Kellett, who retired in 2002, and when Dr Garry retired in 2007, he was replaced by another daughter, Dr Siobhan O’Reilly and Dr Gareth Conway. Dr Edward Farnan and Dr Gareth Conway both left the practice in 2013 and was replaced by Dr Eimear Moriarty. Dr Ruth Reilly retired in 2015 and Dr Roisin McAleavey joined the practice in 2016. Dr Susan McNally retired in early 2018.
We have always been regarded by patients and staff as a family practice. We are proud to carry on this tradition, while remaining at the forefront of innovation in Primary Care.