Tuesday, 20 March 2018

Chambré of Hawthorn Hill


This is a branch of the ancient Shropshire family of Chambré of Petton, which derived from John de Chambré, living in 1310, who is stated in an old mutilated pedigree to have been descended from
Johan de la Chaumbré, a nobelle Normanne, who entered England in ye traine of King William ye Conqueraure.
HENRY CHAMBRÉ, of Petton, went over to Ireland in the 17th century, and took with him a certified copy of his pedigree.

GEORGE CHAMBRÉ, of Petton, Shropshire, espoused Judith, daughter and co-heir of Walter Calcott, of Williamscote, Oxfordshire, and had issue, with a daughter, three sons, all named Calcott,
Calcott, dsp;
Calcott, MP, of Carnew and Shillelagh;
CALCOTT, of whom hereafter;
The youngest son,

CALCOTT CHAMBRÉ, of Coolatrindle, County Wexford, born in 1602, left issue, two sons, viz.
CALCOTT, of whom hereafter.
The younger son,

CAPTAIN CALCOTT CHAMBRÉ (-1753), of Wexford, married Mary, daughter of Oliver Walsh, of Dollardstown, County Kildare, and Ballykilcavan, Queen's County, by Edith his wife, sister of Raphael Hunt and had issue,
HUNT CALCOTT, his heir;
Chaworth Calcott, in holy orders;
The elder son,

HUNT CALCOTT CHAMBRÉ (-1782), of Carnew Castle, County Wicklow, wedded, in 1735, Anna Maria, eldest daughter and co-heir of William Meredith, and had, with other children (who died unmarried),
Ellinor; Anne; Henrietta.
The eldest surviving son,

MEREDITH CALCOTT CHAMBRÉ (1742-1812), of Hawthorn Hill, County Armagh, married, in 1785, Margaret, daughter and co-heir of George Faulkner, of County Dublin, and had issue,
HUNT WALSH, his heir;
William, Major-General;
Maria, m Rev R Henry, Rector of Jonesborough.
Mr Chambré was succeeded by his eldest son,

HUNT WALSH CHAMBRÉ JP (1787-1848), of Hawthorn Hill, Captain, Mullaglass Yeomanry, High Sheriff of County Armagh, 1829, who wedded, in 1813, Rebecca, only daughter of William Upton, of Ballinabarney, County Limerick, and had issue,
Meredith, 1814-79;
HUNT WALSH, of whom hereafter;
John, of Hawthorn Hill;
Catherine; Anna Maria; Rebecca; Margaret Elizabeth;
Olivia Henrietta Elizabeth; Mary Frances; Jane Hunt.
The third son,

HUNT WALSH CHAMBRÉ JP (1831-1914), of Dungannon House, County Tyrone, espoused, in 1860, Mary Anne Brunette, daughter of John Brett Johnston, of Ballykilbeg, County Down, and had issue,
Hunt Walsh Alan;
John Brett Johnstone Meredith;
William Thomas Meredith;
William Henry;
Thomasina; Rebecca Mary Brunette; Olivia Isabella Kathleen;
Jane Henry Wray Young Mabel; Kathleen Georgaina Evelyn.
The fourth son,

CHARLES BARCLAY MACPHERSON CHAMBRÉ JP (1870-1950), of Hawthorn Hill, married, in 1906, Nina Lisa Francis Ochiltree, daughter of the Rev Alexander Stuart, and had issue, a son,

ALAN STUART HUNT CHAMBRÉ JP DL (1908-), of Ringdarriff, Annahilt, County Down, who wedded, in 1933, Violet Aileen, daughter of Wickham Hercules Bradshaw Moorhead, and had issue,
JOHN ALAN, his heir;
Jean Mary, b 1938;
Rosaleen Aileen, b 1946.
His only son,

JOHN ALAN CHAMBRÉ (1939-), married, in 1968, Elizabeth Mildred, daughter of John Horace Willcox, and had issue,
Thomas John Charles, b 1976;
Sophia Gabrielle, b 1971;
Kate Mabel Elizabeth, b 1978.

HAWTHORN HILL was located at the foot of Slieve Gullion Mountain between Forkhill, County Armagh, and Newry, County Down.

It was built ca 1820 by Hunt Walsh Chambré.

The family is buried in Killevy churchyard.

During civil unrest in the 1920s the house was burnt.

It was subsequently reconstructed in its present form.

In 1968, the Chambré family sold the estate to the Northern Ireland Forestry Commission and the house was used until recently as its headquarters.

The demesne lies on the east-facing slopes of Slieve Gullion.

There are mature trees from the early 19th century, later exotics, and forest planting from the 1950s.

Modern landscaping and ornamental planting now form part of the walled garden and outbuildings, which now house the visitor centre for Slieve Gullion Forest Park.

The gate lodge of ca 1834 is opposite the entrance and replaced a lodge that was contemporary with the house.


SLIEVE GULLION COURTYARD, Killeavy, County Down, remains and is used commercially for weddings and other functions.

It is located at the foot of Slieve Gullion with a walled garden to its north-west and Hawthorn House to its South.

There are two gate lodges: a modified back lodge to the north; and a restored gate lodge to the east, opposite the entrance gates to the park.

The early 19th century rectangular courtyard is enclosed to all sides by former stables and related farm buildings, now all refurbished as offices, apartments, conference centre and restaurant or service block by the Forest Service.

All buildings are constructed in coursed granite rubble with natural slate roofs.

The eastern side of the courtyard assumed its present form between 1861 and 1907.

It was sold to the Forestry Commission in 1968.

The present buildings were developed to provide resources for the local community and tourists and opened to the public in 1995.

The complex was taken over in 1999 by Clanrye Employment and Training Services, Newry.

First published in March, 2016.

Maggie's Hut

Maggie's Hut

At the beginning of the Blue and Red trails at the National Trust's Mount Stewart estate on the Ards Peninsula, County Down, there was a blue shepherd's hut where a member of staff greeted visitors and provided information.

Unfortunately that quaint little hut was crushed by a large tree during a storm in December, 2017.

I have just been informed, however, that a replacement arrives in the estate today, the 20th March, 2018.

It seems, however, that shepherd's huts or keepers' watch huts do have a history.

The one at Mount Stewart (above) was built by a company in County Fermanagh.

My cousin Shirley and her family purchased one, and it's installed in the grounds of their home at Fittleworth in West Sussex.

In fact, if you like the look of it and its location at the village of Fittleworth, you can stay in it.

It is close to the Duke of Richmond's magnificent seat, Goodwood.

Maggie's Hut has a double bed and wood-burning stove.

The Swan Inn, a family-run 15th century pub, is a short stroll away, too, convenient for the South Downs National Park, Chichester, Petworth and Arundel.

Maggie's hut during winter, 2018.

Maggie's Hut has a separate outdoor 'Eco' composting loo, and showering facilities are presently available in the main house.

I wish them every success with their imaginative endeavour; and may many guests enjoy Maggie's Hut.

I know who "Maggie" is, by the way (!).

First published in September, 2016.

Monday, 19 March 2018

Shelton Abbey


The noble house of WICKLOW derives from the Fersfield branch of the ducal family of Howard.

JOHN HOWARD (1616-43) married, in 1636, Dorothea Hassells.

Following his decease, his widow removed to Ireland, where she wedded her cousin, Robert Hassells, of Shelton, County Wicklow.

The son of John and Dorothea Howard,

RALPH HOWARD (1638-1710), of Shelton, who was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, took a degree in Medicine in 1667, and succeeded Dr Margetson as Regius Professor of Physics at that university.

Being afterwards attainted with many others in JAMES II's parliament, on account of his having returned to England on the breaking out of war in Ireland, with his numerous family of young children, in 1688, his estate containing 600 acres in the barony of Bargy, and County Wexford, and his leasehold interest of the north share of Arklow, and Shelton estates, County Wicklow, held from the 2nd Duke and Duchess of Ormonde, containing 4,000 acres, plantation measure, were seized upon and put in the possession of Mr Hackett, who being appointed sequestrator, resided in Shelton House, and received the rents until the war ended.

After the defeat at the Boyne in 1690, JAMES II stayed at Shelton to refresh himself, en route to Waterford; and says, in his memoirs, that he rested some time at Mr Hackett's.

On the re-establishment of tranquillity under WILLIAM III, Dr Howard recovered his estates.

He married, in 1668, Catherine, eldest daughter of Roger Sotheby, MP for Wicklow, and had issue (with three daughters), three sons, viz.
HUGH, his heir;
ROBERT, of whom hereafter;
William, MP for Dublin City, 1727.
The eldest son,

HUGH HOWARD (1675-1737), of Shelton, was appointed Keeper of the State Papers at Whitehall, 1714, and Paymaster of the Board of Works, 1726.

He died in London, leaving a fine collection of books, drawings, prints, and medals, as well as his estates at Shelton and Seskin, County Wicklow, to his only surviving brother,

THE RT REV ROBERT HOWARD (1670-1740), Lord Bishop of Elphin, who inherited, in 1728, the estates of his family at the decease of his elder brother Hugh, of Shelton, County Wicklow.

His lordship married, in 1724, Patience, daughter and sole heiress of Godfrey Boleyne, of Fenner, by Mary his wife, sister of the Rt Hon Henry Singleton, Lord Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, and had issue,
RALPH, his heir;
Catherine, m to John, 1st Earl of Erne.
Bishop Howard was succeeded by his eldest son,

THE RT HON RALPH HOWARD, (1726-89), MP for County Wicklow, 1761-76, Privy Counsellor, who was elevated to the peerage, 1778, by the title of Baron Clonmore, of Clonmore Castle, County Carlow; and advanced to a viscountcy, in 1785, as Viscount Wicklow.

His lordship wedded, in 1755, Alice (who was raised to the peerage, 1793, as COUNTESS OF WICKLOW), only daughter and heiress of William Forward MP, of Castle Forward, County Donegal, and had issue,
WILLIAM, successive peers;
Stuarta; Isabella; Katherine; Mary.
His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,

ROBERT (1757-1815), 2nd Viscount; who, in 1807, became EARL OF WICKLOW at the demise of his mother; but died unmarried, when the honours devolved upon his brother,

WILLIAM (1761-1818), 3rd Earl; who had assumed the surname and arms of FORWARD upon inheriting the estate of his maternal relatives; but resumed his family name of HOWARD on succeeding to the peerage.

His lordship espoused, in 1787, Eleanor, only daughter of the Hon Francis Caulfeild, and granddaughter of James, 3rd Viscount Charlemont, and had issue,
WILLIAM, his heir;
Francis (Rev); father of
Isabella Mary; Eleanor; Mary; Alicia.
His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,

WILLIAM (1788-1869), 4th Earl, KP, who wedded, in 1816, the Lady Cecil Frances Hamilton, daughter of John James, 1st Marquess of Abercorn; though his lordship had no male issue, and was succeeded by his nephew,
On the death of the 8th Earl, the titles became extinct.

SHELTON ABBEY, near Arklow, County Wicklow, was the splendid demesne of the Earls of Wicklow.

The mansion, built in 1770, comprises two storeys and eleven bays.

It was remodelled in the Gothic style, in 1819, to the designs of Sir Richard Morrison.

The intention was to represent an ecclesiastical structure of the 14th century, transmuted into a baronial residence.

The building is finished with lined render and granite dressings.

The decorative panelled front door has a blind fanlight and is set within a pointed-arched opening.

This is recessed within a projecting triple arched flat-roofed porch.

The front is lavishly embellished with reducing buttresses with tall pinnacles.

To the north and rear large two-storey wings were later added.

The mainly pitched roof is finished with natural slate and has cast-iron rainwater goods.

The building is set within a large wooded demesne. Internally the elaborate plasterwork is still intact.

This remains an important early 19th century country house which has been very well preserved.

During the Victorian era, the 'Abbey style' was considered appropriate to secluded settings such as this.

It has been converted to institutional use with no loss of character.

The town residence of Lord Wicklow used to be 56 Upper Brook Street, London (now part of the US Embassy).

In 1947, the 8th Earl opened Shelton as an hotel in a vain attempt to meet the cost of upkeep; but he was obliged to sell it in 1951, owing to taxation.

Shelton Abbey operated as a school for a period.

The mansion has, since the early 1970s, been used as an open prison for males aged 19 years and over who are regarded as requiring lower levels of security.

Wicklow arms courtesy of European Heraldry.   First published in January, 2012.

The Macartney Baronets


GEORGE MACARTNEY (son of George Macartney, the last of the Macartneys of Blacket, who resided in Scotland), settled in Belfast ca 1650, and married Grace Davies, said to be of the family of Sir John Davies, Knight, Attorney-General for Ireland during the reign of JAMES I, and had two sons,
ISAAC, of whom we treat.
The younger son,

ISAAC MACARTNEY, possessed a large estate in Ulster, and served as High Sheriff of County Antrim, 1690.

Mr Macartney spent £40,000 in constructing the docks and quays at the port of Belfast.

He wedded Anne, sister and co-heiress (with her sister, the wife of John MacDowall, of Freugh, and grandmother of Patrick, Earl of Dumfries) of John Haltridge, of Dromore, County Down, MP for Killyleagh, 1703-25, and had issue,
GEORGE, High Sheriff of County Antrim, 1743;
WILLIAM, of whom hereafter;
Grace, m Sir Robert Blackwood Bt.
The younger son,

WILLIAM MACARTNEY (1714-93), MP for Belfast, 1747-60, espoused Catherine, daughter of Thomas Bankes, of the family of Bankes, of Corfe Castle, Dorset, and had issue,
ARTHUR CHICHESTER (1744-1827), KC, of Murlough, County Down;
JOHN, of whom we treat.
The second son,

JOHN MACARTNEY (1747-1812), of Lish, County Down, MP for Fore (Co Westmeath), 1792-7, and for Naas, 1798-1800, received the honour of knighthood, 1796, for his exertions in promoting the inland navigation of Ireland.

Sir John was created a baronet in 1799, denominated of Lish, County Armagh.
The territorial designation "Lish" is somewhat curious, given that there is no townland or civil parish by that name to my knowledge. 
I think that it refers to the townland of TULLYLISH, which sits on the River Bann between Banbridge, County Down, and Portadown, County Armagh.
He married firstly, Miss Anne Scriven, descended from the Barclays of Urie, in Scotland, and had issue,
WILLIAM, his successor;
Elizabeth; Maria; Anna.
Sir John wedded secondly, Catherine, daughter of the Rt Hon Walter Hussey Burgh, Chief Baron of the Irish Exchequer, and had a son and daughter,
Hussey Burgh;
He was succeeded by his eldest son, 

THE REV SIR WILLIAM ISAAC MACARTNEY MA (1780-1867), 2nd Baronet, of Lish, Rector of Desertegny, County Donegal, who married Ellen, daughter of Sir James Barrington Bt, and had issue,
Sophia; Anna; Georgina; Fanny; Maria.
Sir William was succeeded by his son,

SIR JOHN MACARTNEY, 3rd Baronet (1832–1911), who lived at Jolimont, Mackay, Queensland, Australia.

Sir John Barrington Macartney, 6th Baronet, was a dairy farmer.

Sir John Ralph Macartney (b 1945), is 7th and present baronet,
former Petty Officer, Royal Australian Navy; Malaya and Vietnam 1968–69; In 1979, a teacher at Bruce College Technology and Further; in 2003 lived at Mount Pleasant, Queensland, Australia.
The family has lived in Australia since the migration of the 3rd Baronet in the 19th century.


ISAAC MACARTNEY (c1670-1738), merchant and shipowner of Belfast, was the son of another merchant and shipowner, "Black" George Macartney.

This Isaac was High Sheriff of County Antrim, 1690, and a Burgess of Belfast, 1701-07.

He built George and Hanover Quays in Belfast at his own expense; though was ruined by his brother-in-law's debts, his own "inattention to business", and the inefficiency of trustees appointed to manage his estates.

Mr Macartney was a Presbyterian and a leading elder of First Belfast Presbyterian Church between 1709-16.

He had an annual income of £400 from leasehold properties in Belfast and inherited his wife's estates in Counties Down and Armagh. His wife was Anne Haltridge (d 1748), daughter of William Haltridge, a wealthy Dromore merchant.

Macartney was gradually drawn into the financial affairs of his brother-in-law, which eventually ruined him.

Sir John Ralph Macartney (b 1945), 7th and present baronet, lives in Australia.

I have discovered a fascinating article by the Rt Hon Sir William Grey Ellison-Macartney KCMG (1852-1924), a statesman who served as Governor of several Australian states:-
In dealing with the two branches of the Macartney family, which settled in Belfast in the second quarter of the 17th century, the author of Benn's History of Belfast and the editor of The Town Book of Belfast have fallen into several inaccuracies.

Though both these publications were issued during my father's lifetime, neither of these writers made any enquiries of him for the purpose of identifying the respective personalities of the two George Macartneys who came from Scotland, and who occupied very prominent positions in Belfast, during the second half of the 17th century.

One was George Macartney, of Auchinleck, whose son George acquired in 1742 an estate in the north of Antrim, and whose descendants are known as the Macartneys of Lissanoure; the other was George Macartney of Blacket, from whom are descended, with others,
  • Col John Merton Macartney, late of Dorset Regiment, the male representative of this branch; 
  • Edward Henry Macartney MP, of Glenallan, Brisbane, Queensland;
  • The Rt Hon Sir William Ellison-Macartney;
  • Sir John Macartney Bt, of Queensland;
  • The Very Rev Hussey Burgh Macartney, Dean of Melbourne.
First published in December, 2010.

Sunday, 18 March 2018

Cecil Manor


JEAN GERVAIS, of Tournon, Guyenne, France, married Anne Fabre, and had two sons,
PIERRE, of whom we treat;
After their parents' death, and while still children, they fled with an uncle at the revocation of the edict of Nantes, and settled in England.

In 1710, DANIEL, the younger, was naturalized, and subsequently became a captain in the British army and gentleman usher to Queen Anne.

He wedded Pauline Belagnier, daughter of the minister of the French protestant church, Dublin, but dsp.

His brother, elder son of Jean Gervais, 

PIERRE GERVAIS, espoused, in 1717, Marie Françoise Girard, and died in 1730, having had three sons, the eldest of whom,

PETER GERVAIS (1722-1800), Collector of Revenue, Armagh, wedded, in 1763, Elizabeth, fourth daughter of the Rev Samuel Close, of Elm Park, County Armagh.

They both died in 1800, leaving issue,
FRANCIS, his heir;
Mary Anne, m Rev D Kelly;
Elizabeth, m Captain John Winder.
The only son,

THE REV FRANCIS GERVAIS JP (1764-1849), of Cecil, Rector of Tartaraghan, Carlingford, married, in 1807, Katherine Jane, daughter of Michael Tisdall, of Charlesfort, County Meath, and had issue,
FRANCIS JOHN, his heir;
Elizabeth; Catherine; Juliana Henrietta.
The only son,

FRANCIS JOHN GERVAIS JP DL (1819-82)), of Cecil Manor, High Sheriff of County Tyrone, 1846, wedded, in 1852, Annie Catherine, eldest daughter of the Rev John Richardson Young, of Kilmarron Rectory, County Monaghan, and had issue,
FRANCIS PETER, his heir;
Katherine Mary; Frances Elizabeth Haton.
The only son,

FRANCIS PETER GERVAIS JP DL (1858-1918), of Cecil Manor, High Sheriff of County Tyrone, 1902, Barrister, married, in 1884, Georgina Francis Dalrymple, daughter of James Gilmour, of Warren Hill, County Londonderry, and had issue,
DOROTHY, born ca 1886.

CECIL MANOR, near Augher, County Tyrone, was a rather austere three-storey, early 19th century block, probably attributed to William Farrell.

It was built ca 1830 for the Rev Francis Gervais who, formerly the property of the Cairnes family, was bought by the clergyman in 1811.

The windows were set wide apart in the solid expanses of wall.

Its entrance front had a Classical porch, prolonged by a wing of the same height.

There was a slightly overhanging roof with a bracket cornice; and chimney-stacks grouped together in a long line.

The mansion, originally called Saville Lodge, is now demolished.

The demesne had four gate lodges, of which two seem to have survived, albeit in a parlous state.

This was formerly a fine demesne on the lower slopes of Knockmany.

There is still an avenue of Douglas Fir and forest planting, and a lake.

A garden house is at the site of a formerly productive garden.

There was a male and female school, on Erasmus Smith's foundation, endowed with two acres of land by the Rev Francis and Mrs Gervais, who, in conjunction with the trustees of that charity, built the schoolhouse.

Much of the estate is now part of the Northern Ireland Forest Service's Knockmany Forest.

Former London residence  ~ 2 Strathmore Gardens.

First published in September, 2010.

Saturday, 17 March 2018

House of Crichton

This name originally assumed from the barony of Crichton in Edinburgh.

This family is descended from a branch of the Viscounts Frendraught, in Scotland.

JOHN CREIGHTON, of Crom Castle, County Fermanagh, settled in County Fermanagh during the reign of CHARLES I.

He married Mary, daughter of Sir Gerald Irvine, of Castle Irvine, and was succeeded by his son,

ABRAHAM CREIGHTON (c1631-c1705), MP for County Fermanagh, 1692-3, MP for Enniskillen, 1695-9, who commanded a foot regiment in WILLIAM III's service in the battle of Aughrim, 1692.

Colonel Creighton, High Sheriff of County Fermanagh, 1673, married Mary, daughter of the Rt Rev James Spottiswood, Lord Bishop of Clogher, and had issue,
DAVID, his heir;
Jane; Marianna.
He was succeeded by his only surviving son,

DAVID CREIGHTON (1671-1728), celebrated for his gallant defence, in 1689, of the family seat of Crom Castle, against a large body of the Jacobite army.

Having repulsed the assailants, young Creighton made a sally, at the instant that a corps of Enniskilleners was approaching to the relief of the castle, which movement placed the besiegers between two fires, and caused dreadful slaughter.

The enemy attempting to accomplish his retreat across an arm of Lough Erne at Inishfendra Island, near Crom Castle, that spot became the scene of such carnage, that it bore the name of the "Bloody Pass".

He represented Augher in parliament, 1695-9, and Lifford, 1703-28; attained the rank of major-general in the army; and was appointed Governor of the Royal Hospital, Kilmainham, County Dublin.

General Creighton wedded, in 1700, Katherine, second daughter of Richard Southwell, of Castle Mattress, County Limerick, and sister of 1st Lord Southwell, and had issue,
ABRAHAM, his heir;
He and was succeeded by his only son,

ABRAHAM CREIGHTON (c1700-72), MP for Lifford, 1727-68, who was elevated to the peerage, in 1768, by the title of Baron Erne, of Crom Castle.

His lordship espoused Elizabeth, eldest daughter of John Rogerson, Lord Chief Justice of the Court of King's Bench in Ireland, and had issue,
David, died young;
JOHN, his successor;
Meliora; Charlotte; Mary.
He married secondly, in 1762, Jane, only daughter of John King, of Charlestown, County Roscommon, and widow of Arthur Acheson, by whom he had no issue.

His lordship was succeeded by his eldest surviving son,

JOHN, 2nd Baron (1731-1828), who was created Viscount Erne in 1781; and advanced to the dignity of an earldom, 1789, as EARL OF ERNE.

His lordship wedded firstly, in 1761, Catherine, 2nd daughter of the Rt Rev Robert Howard, Lord Bishop of Elphin, and sister of the Viscount Wicklow, and had issue,
ABRAHAM, his successor;
Elizabeth; Catherine.
He espoused secondly, in 1776, the Lady Mary Hervey, eldest daughter of Frederick Augustus, 4th Earl of Bristol and Lord Bishop of Derry, and had an only daughter, Elizabeth Caroline Mary, who wedded James Archibald, Lord Wharncliffe.

John Henry Michael Ninian [Crichton] succeeded his father as 7th Earl.


Crom Castle in County Fermanagh, remains the ancestral seat of the Earls of Erne.

Crom Estate, however, has been a property of the National Trust since 1988.

The name Crom, which was sometimes spelt "Crum", is traditionally pronounced "Crum".

The 6th Earl, who died on the 23rd December, 2015, is survived by wife Anna, Countess of Erne, and his son and four daughters: John, 7th Earl; Lady Cleone; Lady Davina; Lady Katherine; and Lady Tara.

The 6th Earl retired as HM Lord-Lieutenant for County Fermanagh on the 9th July, 2012, having served 25 years in office.

One of his final official engagements was to welcome Her Majesty The Queen and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh to the county during Her Majesty's Diamond Jubilee tour, on the 26th June, 2012.

First published in January, 2012.

St Patrick's Day

The Duchess of Cambridge presenting shamrock to the Irish Guards on St Patrick's Day, 2012.

Her Royal Highness travelled to their barracks to meet officers and soldiers of the 1st Battalion of the regiment.

This tradition was maintained for many years by Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother (1900-2002).

Prince William is Royal Colonel of the Irish Guards.

The royal tradition dates back to 1901, when Queen Alexandra asked for shamrocks to be presented to the newly-formed regiment.
The badge of the Irish Guards comprises a star, within which is a shamrock with three crowns on its leaves (the historic kingdoms of England, Ireland and Scotland), the shamrock being placed on a cross of St Patrick.

The centre is surrounded by a circle which bears the legend QUIS SEPARABIT - who shall separate - and the date MDCCLXXXIII (1783), the establishment of the Most Illustrious Order of St Patrick (KP).

Friday, 16 March 2018

1st Earl of Thomond

This family (one of the few native houses to be found in the Peerage of Ireland) deduces its descent from the royal line of THOMOND, a race of princes which sprang from the celebrated Hibernian monarch, Brian Boru, who commenced his reign in 1002, and terminated it with his life at the battle of Clontarf in 1014.

The last of those princes,

CONNOR O'BRIEN, who was inaugurated King of Thomond in 1528, died in 1540, when his son was set aside and the principality usurped by his brother,

MURROUGH O'BRIEN, who surrendered his royalty to HENRY VIII, and was created in consequence by His Majesty, in 1543, EARL OF THOMOND, with remainder to his deposed nephew, Donough O'Brien, and BARON INCHIQUIN to his own male heirs; and for the better support of these honours, the King granted and confirmed to him and his male heirs all his lands, possessions, and patronages in Thomond beyond the River Shannon, bishoprics excepted.

His lordship died in 1551, when the Earldom devolved accordingly upon the said

DONOUGH O'BRIEN, who, on surrendering the patent to EDWARD VI, obtained a new grant of the dignities to himself and his male heirs, in 1552, and also possession of all the honours and lands which had fallen to the Crown by the death of his uncle.

From this nobleman the Earldom of Thomond passed in regular succession to

HENRY, 8th Earl, 1st Viscount Tadcaster (1688-1741); at whose decease, without male issue, it expired with his lordship's other honours.

The barony of Inchiquin was inherited by the 1st Earl's son and heir by Eleanor, daughter of Thomas FitzGerald,

DERMOD, 2nd Baron; to whom his father assigned the castle and lands of Inchiquin and other extensive territorial possessions.

His lordship wedded Margaret, eldest daughter of Donough, 2nd Earl of Thomond; and dying in 1557, was succeeded by his son,

MURROUGH, 3rd Baron (c1550-74), who espoused Mabel, eldest daughter of Christopher, 6th Baron Delvin, and was succeeded at his decease by his son,

MURROUGH, 4th Baron (1563-97), who married Margaret, daughter of Sir Thomas Cusack, LORD CHANCELLOR OF IRELAND, and was succeeded by his son,

DERMOD, 5th Baron (1594-1624), who wedded Ellen, eldest daughter of Sir Edmund FitzGerald, Knight, of Cloyne, and was succeeded at his decease by his eldest son,

MURROUGH, 6th Baron (1614-74), who was advanced, 1664, to the EARLDOM OF INCHIQUIN.
The 4th Earl was succeeded, in 1777, by his nephew and son-in-law,

MURROUGH (1726-1808), as 5th Earl; who was created, in 1800, MARQUESS OF THOMOND, and was enrolled amongst the peers of the United Kingdom, 1801, as Baron Thomond, of Taplow, Buckinghamshire.

His lordship had several children by his first consort, Mary, 3rd Countess of Orkney, none of whom lived, however, except MARY, who succeeded to the honours of her mother, as 4th Countess of Orkney, and wedded the Hon Thomas Fitzmaurice.

He espoused secondly, in 1762, Mary, eldest daughter of John Palmer, of Great Torrington, Devon, and niece of Sir Joshua Reynolds, but had no other issue.

His lordship was thrown from his horse in Grosvenor Square, London, in 1808, and died in consequence of the fall, when the barony of THOMOND, of Taplow, expired; but the Irish honours devolved upon his nephew,

WILLIAM O'BRIEN (1765-1846), as 2nd Marquess, KP, who married, in 1799, Elizabeth, only daughter and heiress of Thomas Trotter, of Duleek, County Meath, and had issue,
Susan Maria; Sarah; Mary; Elizabeth.
His lordship, who was installed a Knight of St Patrick in 1809, died without male issue, when the family honours devolved upon his brother,

JAMES, 3rd Marquess (1769-1855), GCH, Admiral in the Royal Navy, who wedded firstly, in 1800, Eliza Bridgman, second daughter of James Willyams, of Carnanton, Cornwall; and secondly, in 1806, Jane, daughter of Thomas Ottley; and thirdly, in 1847 , Anne, sister of Sir Charles William Flint.

His lordship, however, left no issue, and the marquessate and earldom expired; the barony of Inchiquin, however, reverted to Sir Lucius O'Brien Bt, in 1855, as 13th Baron Inchiquin.

ROSTELLAN CASTLE, County Cork, was delightfully situated and presented a striking object to vessels entering Cork Harbour.

The ancient castle, from which it acquired its designation, was a residence of the FitzGeralds, built by Robert FitzStephen; and during the wars of 1645 it was twice assailed and captured.

The early Georgian mansion of 1721 was built on the site of the ancient pile, and was considerably enlarged and improved by at least two of its noble proprietors.

The castle was rebuilt at some stage prior to 1750, possibly by the 4th Earl (1700-77), who established the predecessor of the Royal Cork Yacht Club in 1720.

In 1777 the 5th Earl and 1st Marquess of Thomond extended and renovated Rostellan; and further alterations were undertaken by the 2nd Marquess.

Thereafter it comprised three storeys, with a five-bay front between two three-sided bows.

A side elevation consisted of four bays and a three-sided bow.

The house front had noticeable string courses and quoins.

The chapel

A Gothic porch was added in the 19th century; and a substantial Gothic chapel wing with pinnacles and castellated round tower.

Facing the water-front, near the house, there was a battlemented terrace complete with canons, akin to a battery.

The 1st Marquess erected a tower in honour of Mrs Siddons, a house guest.

Following the decease of the 3rd and last Marquess in 1855, Rostellan was purchased by Dr Thomas Alexander Wise.

Sir John Pope-Hennessy, KCMG, formerly of Myrtle Grove, became the next owner; followed by Charles John Engledow MP.

Rostellan suffered the fate of many mansions, in 1944: demolition.

The demesne which surrounded it was exquisite in situation, and commanded an unequalled prospect of the animated, picturesque and grand harbour.

The grounds were well planted, displayed a profusion of luxuriant evergreens, and presented many delightful indications of the mildness of the climate, and the fertility of the soil.

First published in March, 2016.  Thomond arms courtesy of European Heraldry.

Johnstown Castle


LORD MAURICE FITZGERALD (1852-1901), second son of Charles, 4th Duke of Leinster, of Carton House, County Kildare, married, in 1880, the Lady Adelaide Jane Frances Forbes, daughter of the 7th Earl of Granard, and had issue,
GERALD HUGH, his heir;
Geraldine Mary; Kathleen; Marjorie.
Lord Maurice, Lord-Lieutenant of County Wexford, 1881-1901, was succeeded by his son and heir,

GERALD HUGH FITZGERALD (1886-1914), Captain, 4th Dragoon Guards (Royal Irish), who wedded, in 1914, Dorothy Violet, daughter of Spencer Calmeyer Charrington (of the famous brewing family), though the marriage was without issue.

Captain FitzGerald was killed in action during the 1st World war.

JOHNSTOWN CASTLE, near Wexford town, is a spacious, castellated mansion, built entirely of Carlow granite, and equal in beauty and magnificence to many of its ilk in the British Isles.

It occupies the site, and embodies one of the towers, of a very ancient structure.

Immediately adjoining it is a fine lake, formed at huge expense, decorated at its edges tastefully and closely overlooked at the margin by several turrets of carved stone.

The mansion has been home to two prominent County Wexford families.

The first owners were the Esmonde Baronets, a Norman family who settled in the county in the 1170s.

They constructed the tower houses at Johnstown and Rathlannon during the 15th or 16th century.

During the Cromwellian period of 1640s the estate was confiscated and changed hands several times before being acquired by John Grogan in 1692, whose descendants remained at Johnstown until 1945.

Following the death of Hamilton K Grogan-Morgan, Johnstown passed to his widow who married, as her second husband, the Rt Hon Sir Thomas Esmonde, 9th Baronet, a descendant of the original owners.

The demesne subsequently passed to Grogan-Morgan's daughter Jane, Countess of Granard; thence to Lady Granard's daughter, Lady Maurice FitzGerald.

The old tower house was the home of Cornelius Grogan, who was unjustly executed for treason after the 1798 Rebellion.

By 1863, Johnstown Castle estate was at its peak of development and comprised of a large demesne of over 1,000 acres.

The demesne occupies a hollow at the head of a fertile valley, a brief distance from the base of a picturesque mountain.

It was divided in two, with a deer park to the north, and the castle, pleasure grounds, home farm and two lakes (with a third lake under construction) to the south.

In 1945 Maurice Victor Lakin presented Johnstown Castle estate as a gift to the Irish state.

Today Teagasc, the Irish Agricultural and Food Development Authority, owns Johnstown Castle estate and has a research facility on site.

The Irish Agricultural Museum is housed in the old stable and farmyard buildings of the demesne.

Burke's guide describes Johnstown as being,
An old tower house of the Esmondes, engulfed in an impressively turreted, battlemented and machiolated castle of silver-grey ashlar built about 1840 for H K Grogan-Morgan MP, to the design of Daniel Robertson, of Kilkenny.

The entrance front is dominated by a single tower with a porte-cochere projecting at the end of an entrance corridor and a Gothic conservatory at one end. The garden front has two round turrets, a three-sided central bow with tracery windows.
First published in November, 2011.

Thursday, 15 March 2018

Lizard Manor



The manor of Lizard was established by the Honourable The Irish Society in 1618, and a conveyance of this manor to the Ironmongers' Company from the Society was executed in November of the same year.
By this deed, the Society did "fully, clearly, and absolutely grant" the Manor of Lizard, and all the rents, advowsons [sic], tithes, and all other profits whatsoever, except timber, &c., at the yearly rent of £11. 6s. 8d., to the Ironmongers' Company, their successors and assigns for ever, to the only use and behoof [sic] of the said Company. 
Towards the end of 1614, George Canning, a native of Barton in Warwickshire, was appointed agent by the Company and charged with building a bawn and castle at Agivey. 

A lease was granted to George Canning in 1617 for 41 years [no fine; annual rent, £120]. 

In 1630, Paul Canning, a member of the Ironmongers' Company and their agent in Ireland, sold his estate in England, and spent it in planting and stocking the Company's estate, and also at his own charge built a church.

The charter to the Irish Society granted by JAMES I was revoked in the reign of CHARLES I, by decree of the Star Chamber, in Hilary Term, 1638, and all the estates were escheated to the Crown.

In 1662, in the reign of CHARLES II, letters patent were issued, containing, with but little alteration, all the clauses of the charter of JAMES I.

The renewed grant from the Society to the Ironmongers' Company of the Manor of Lizard, dated 1663, recites, that
The King takes into consideration the vast sums of money the Society and the several Companies of London had laid out and disbursed in their building and planting.
In 1658, Paul Canning acquired a new lease [fine, £500; annual rent, £270].

This lease was assigned to another George Canning, whose son, George, obtained a new lease in 1705 for 21 years [fine, £1,900; annual rent, £250]. 

Stratford Canning, a son of George, failed to renew this lease and the estate was leased to Messrs Leckey, Macky, Cunningham and Craighead, 1726, for 41 years. 

When the lease expired in 1767 it was auctioned, and after William Alexander failed to pay with a fine of £21,000, the estate was leased to a Mr Dupree from London, for 61 years and three lives [fine, £21,000; annual rent, £600]. 

Dupree never visited the estate and his son sold the lease in 1813 to the Beresford and Hill families, who retained the estate until the death, in 1840, of the Most Rev Nathaniel Alexander [Bishop of Meath], the last of the three lives in the lease. 

LIZARD MANOR, near Aghadowey, County Londondery, is a two-storey, mid-Victorian house built ca 1861.

Henry Anderson, the local agent to the Worshipful Company of Ironmongers, was the first occupant.

In 1861, offices were completed. These offices (which may have included the two-storey, red brick stable block to the west of the dwelling) were completed by 1864.

The servant’s block, which abuts the northern return of Lizard Manor, was utilised as a dwelling by the estate steward.

Henry Anderson continued to reside at Lizard Manor until his death in the 1870s.

In 1874, the property was acquired by the Stronge family of Tynan Abbey, County Armagh, who continued to hold Lizard Manor until the 1950s.

Sir Charles Stronge, 7th Baronet (1862-1939), lived at Lizard Manor.

After 1889, the Worshipful Company of Ironmongers began to sell portions of its estate; and in 1891 the Stronge family purchased Lizard Manor and its associated lands from the company.

The Stronges employed a large number of domestic servants, cooks and maids to manage the estate.

Lizard Manor was described at that time as
"a first class dwelling that consisted of 22 rooms and possessed a large number of outbuildings, including two stables and two coach houses, five cow houses, a boiling house and a barn."
The layout of Lizard Manor has not been altered since 1904, although some of the original minor outbuildings have been demolished in the intervening years.

Sir Charles Stronge had taken over possession of Lizard Manor from his father in 1897, although Edmond Stronge continued to reside at Rusky until his death about 1910.

Sir Charles Stronge remained at the site until his own death in 1939.

Lizard Manor remained in his family until coming into the possession of the Rt Hon Phelim O’Neill (later 2nd Baron Rathcavan) in 1953; and who resided there till 1978, when he moved to County Mayo.


Lizard Manor dates from ca 1861; however, due to its association with the Worshipful Company of Ironmongers, the origins of the Victorian manor stretch back to the Plantation of Ulster in the 17th Century.

The Worshipful Company of Ironmongers was granted lands in the parish of Aghadowey.

In 1614, George Canning, the first agent of the company in Ulster, constructed a bawn and castle in the parish.

The ‘Manor of Lizard’ was established by the company in 1618, comprising lands which amounted to a total of 38,470 acres.

The title of the manor was derived from the Company’s armorial bearings, which included lizards.

The Ironmongers, having leased out their land to their agent for almost two centuries, took over control of the Manor of Lizard ca 1840 and carried out a survey of all its properties and land.

With the completion of the survey the company carried out a number of improvements to their lands, which included the construction of a permanent residence for their agent in the townland of Rusky.

Lizard Manor continues to be utilised as a private dwelling and has undergone few alterations over the past 150 years, retaining much of its original mid-Victorian character.

The demolition or dilapidation of the associated outbuildings has been the only notable alteration to have occurred to the original property.

The house comprises two storeys, with a five-bay front, centre break-front with two narrow windows above; plain projecting porch below; a three-sided bow in side elevation; eaved roof on a plain cornice.

Many trees surround the grassed area near the house, which is on a hill above the Aghadowey River.

The Company’s arms comprise lizards, hence the name.

There is a maintained ornamental garden, enclosed by a beech hedge, near the west side of the house.

A free-standing glasshouse has gone. An orchard to the north of the house is backed by a walled garden, which is of brick.

Tennis Court in 2012

The glasshouses, on the north wall of the walled garden, are ruinous and uncultivated.

First published in March, 2012.

1st Baron Lurgan


SIR WILLIAM BROWNLOW (1591-1660), of Brownlowsderry, County Armagh, the first of the family who settled in Ulster, was born at Epworth, Derbyshire.

The said gentleman received the honour of knighthood, 1622, from Henry, Viscount Falkland, Lord Deputy of Ireland.

In 1629, he received a patent and grant of lands in County Armagh.

Sir William left his property to his grandson (the son of his daughter, Mrs Chamberlain),

ARTHUR CHAMBERLAIN, who, assuming the surname and arms of BROWNLOW, wedded, about 1677, Jane, daughter of Sir Standish Hartstonge Bt, and had issue,
WILLIAM, his heir;
Anne, m Matthew Forde;
Lettice, m Robert Cope.
Mr Brownlow died in 1710, and was succeeded by his only son,

WILLIAM BROWNLOW (1683-1739), MP for County Armagh, 1711-39, who married, in 1712, the Lady Elizabeth Hamilton, daughter of James, 6th Earl of Abercorn, and had issue,
WILLIAM, his heir;
Jane, died unmarried;
Elizabeth, m to John, Lord Knapton;
Anne; Mary; Isabella.
Mr Brownlow was succeeded by his eldest son,

THE RT HON WILLIAM BROWNLOW (1726-94), of Lurgan, MP for County Armagh, 1753-94, who married firstly, in 1754, Judith Letitia, eldest daughter of the Very Rev Charles Meredyth, Dean of Ardfert, and had issue,
WILLIAM, his heir;
CHARLES, heir to his brother.
He wedded secondly, in 1765, Catherine, daughter of Roger Hall, of Mount Hall, County Down, and had issue,
James (1772-1832);
Francis (Rev), b 1779; m Catherine, 6th daughter of 8th Earl of Meath;
Catherine, m, in 1783, M Forde, of Seaforde;
Isabella, m, in 1796, Richard, 4th Viscount Powerscourt;
Elizabeth, m, in 1791, John, 4th Earl of Darnley;
Mary Anne, d unm 1791;
Frances Letitia, m, in 1800, John, 2nd Viscount de Vesci;
Selina; Louisa.
Mr Brownlow was succeeded by his eldest son,

WILLIAM BROWNLOW, who dsp 1815, and was succeeded by his brother,

LIEUTENANT-COLONEL CHARLES BROWNLOW (1757-1822), of Lurgan, who wedded, in 1785, Caroline, daughter and co-heir of Benjamin Ashe, of Bath, and had issue,
William, a military officer, killed in Spain, 1813;
CHARLES, of whom we treat;
John (Rev), b 1798;
Frederick, b 1800; army major;
George, b 1805; East India Company;
Henry, b 1807; East India Company;
Isabella, m, in 1818, R Macneill, of Barra;
Anna, m, in 1821, Col Maxwell Close, of Drumbanagher;
Mary, m, in 1822, Rev John F Close.
Colonel Brownlow was succeeded by his eldest son,

THE RT HON CHARLES BROWNLOW (1795-1847), of Lurgan, MP for County Armagh, 1818-32, who married firstly, in 1822, the Lady Mary Bligh, second daughter of John, 4th Earl of Darnley, by whom he had a daughter, Mary Elizabeth.

He wedded secondly, in 1828, Jane, fourth daughter of Roderick Macneill, of Barra, Inverness-shire, and had issue,
CHARLES, his successor;
Clara Anne Jane.
Mr Brownlow was elevated to the peerage, in 1839, by the title of BARON LURGAN, of Lurgan, County Armagh.

His lordship was succeeded by his edlest son,

CHARLES, 2nd Baron (1831-82), KP, of Lurgan, Knight of the Order of St Patrick, who espoused, in 1853, Emily Anne, fourth daughter of John, 3rd Baron Kilmaine, and had issue,
WILLIAM, his successor;
John Roderick;
Francis Cecil, father of 5th Baron;
Mary Emily Jane; Clara Agnes; Louisa Helene; Isabella Anna;
Clementina Georgiana; Emmeline Harriet Annette.
His lordship, Lord-Lieutenant of County Armagh, 1864-82, was succeeded by his eldest son,

WILLIAM, 3rd Baron (1858-1937), KCVO, of Lurgan, State Steward to HE The Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, 1895-1905, who married, in 1893, the Lady Emily Julia Cadogan, eldest daughter of George, 5th Earl Cadogan, and had issue, an only child, 

WILLIAM GEORGE EDWARD, 4th Baron (1902-84), who wedded, in 1979, (Florence) May Cooper, widow of Eric Cooper, of Johnannesburg, South Africa, and daughter of Louis Francis Squire Webster, of Johannesburg.

His lordship died without issue, when the title reverted to his cousin,


The title expired following the death of the 5th Baron in 1991.


UNDER the Plantation of Ulster, John Brownlow, of Nottingham, offered himself as an undertaker of land in O'Neilland, County Armagh.
Brownlow stated Nottingham as his place of origin, his family's native city and where his father had served as Mayor; but he himself had actually been living in Epworth, Lincolnshire, and had only returned to Nottingham on his father's death to claim his inheritance.
He was granted the 'middle proportion' of Doughcoron in the barony of O'Neilland by patent from JAMES I in 1610.

Doughcoron contained 1,500 acres and included many townlands.

In 1610, John Brownlow's son William was granted 1,000 acres by James I, the proportion of Ballynemony.

This land also lay on the southern shore of Lough Neagh, adjacent to his father's land, and stretched from the upper Bann eastward to Doughcoron.

With the death of John Brownlow, his son, William inherited his father's property; and in 1622 William was knighted by Lord Falkland, the lord deputy of Ireland.

The existing Brownlow estate was not only consolidating and prospering but also being extended, for on the death of Sir William Brownlow in 1660, he was succeeded by his grandson, Arthur Chamberlain, eldest son of Lettice Brownlow. 

Arthur Chamberlain assumed the surname of Brownlow as directed in the will of his grandfather Sir William Brownlow and resided in Brownlowsderry.

Arthur Brownlow, alias Chamberlain, was a prudent manager and accumulated a considerable amount of money which he invested in other lands, chiefly in County Armagh were he acquired the manor of Richmount and thus became one of the largest property owners in the county.

Meanwhile throughout the 17th and 18th centuries the County Armagh Brownlow estate in the manors of Brownlowsderry and Richmound continued to prosper and with it the Brownlows, while Lurgan continued to grow as a town.

However, the changing political situation in Ireland, especially in regard to the land question, and the introduction of the Land Acts, meant the end of the great estate.

This, coupled with family financial crisis, forced the Brownlow family to sell off most of their remaining estate, including Brownlow House, in 1893. 

They moved to London, although maintaining their contact and links with the town and people of Lurgan.

The barony of Lurgan was created in 1839 for Charles Brownlow, MP for County Armagh.

His son, the 2nd Baron, joined the Liberal Party and became a government whip in the Upper House; and he was appointed a Knight of the Most Illustrious Order of St Patrick (KP) in 1864.

The 2nd Lord Lurgan owned the celebrated greyhound, Master McGrath; and his brother-in-law was Mr Maxwell Close whose home, incidentally, was Drumbanagher House, built to the design of William Playfair who also designed Brownlow House.

The barony expired in 1991, following the death of the 5th Baron.

BROWNLOW HOUSE, near Lurgan, County Armagh, is a large Elizabethan-Revival mansion, built by William Playfair about 1836.

This large mansion is built of a honey-coloured stone, with numerous gables and lofty finials; abundant tall chimney-pots; oriels crowned with strap-work; and a tower with a dome and lantern.

The walls of three main reception rooms are decorated with panels painted to look like verd-antique; the ceilings grained to resemble various woods.

The windows overlooking the great staircase boast heraldic stained glass.

Brownlow House was sold by the Lurgan family to the Orange Order in 1903.

The surrounding parkland is the largest public park in Northern Ireland

The Brownlow Papers are held by the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland.

By 1883, the Brownlow estate was valued at £20,589 a year (£1.8 million today).

This consisted of the manors of Brownlowsderry and Richmount.

The memory of the Lurgan family lives on, in the form of a charitable trust.

First published in November, 2009.