Huge mansion houses left falling to ruin

Bit off topic but I thought you guys might appreciate this site I came across documenting abandoned and derelict houses

The photos are stunning - the one of Knockatrina House in Laois makes my heart race ever so slightly.

I sat in on Offaly County Council’s meeting at the end of last year where they discussed sites on their register. Fascinating process - surprised not to see some of them on AbandonedIreland. … FEB_08.pdf

The old convent in Birr hadn’t quite fallen into total disrepair but the regeneration photos here show the possibilities for development. I think the town council chamber is in the old chapel.

The Convent in Kinsale , Cork is also in ruins. It was sold at the peak for a huge amount to developer to turn into apmts.
Twas a great building , perfect condition, I went to the auction when they were flogging some of the pieces inside so had a good look around, amazing structure.
Anyways, fixtures and fittings were sold, big developer moved , I guess 2004/5, spent a year gutting the building, i guess the money and interest has run out, and last time I was there it was just a prop.

Re Knockatrina House in Laois, the former owner took the roof off in the 1950s to avoid paying rates. In 2007 Laois Co. Council gave permission for a new roof and to secure the structure, no work has started yet…

Great site. Some lovely buildings there.

Interesting site. Some of the images of ivy growing all over the great houses are like something out of a fairytale.

this is another good site for getting more detail,

Any case for doing up all these historical places paying unemployed builders some extra on top of their dole to do it?

I saw nationwide I think it was and it did a bit along Military Road where the British built barracks into the mountains to deter the Irish. Lots of abandoned barracks…tie it up with the Wicklow way.
Do what they do along the Appalachian Trail and properly signpost all the Irish walking trails and build the open cabins along the way. Very cheap to do and if it can work in the US it can certainly work here. Tourism potential here is not realised.

Great idea… The Wicklow Tree Army .
I wish they would implement this type of stuff.
most of the Applachian trail was tree planted as part of Roosevelts New Deal, as were many of the lodges

This Economic Catastrophe is a HUGE OPPURTUNITY FOR REAL PROGRESS …

I think theres even a few early pinsters in this photo…scruffy lot,1607,7-160-17451_18670_18793-53515–,00.html

Cheers this is a great resource (the other has nice photos but needs a whole load of additional work).

Boston or Berlin

Agreed. Why not expand it nationwide and seize the 500,000ha of land which are economically most suited to afforestation? :wink:

I agree.

While analysing the unfolding shit-fest is entertaining, we shouldnt overlook the chance to radically change our country and our attitudes.

Will pinsters be at the forefront of Irelands re-emergence?

Nice site, great photos & virtual reality doo-dahs, especially interiors you would normally never see. The design / layout could do with some work, but it’s well worth a look.

During the 80s FAS renovated the original national school building in the village I grew up in. Its still used as a community resource rather than an architects gaff. There were any number of useful projects that they were involved with originally. I’ve been thinking about what’s good thats come from the bubble in Ireland and one thing certainly is that many beautiful old houses that were at the edge of oblivion have been restored and saved for another day. Perhaps rudely, but years ago they were looked on like old poems settling into the earth never to have a curtain drawn open on them again.

The photography’s not as beautiful, but maybe there’s some hope left for these houses:

The US depression era tree-planting of the appalachian way was refered to earlier: … tion_Corps

This programme was probalby the most popular FDR instigated. “Veterans” of the CCC would years later describe it as the best years of their lives, and they generally seemed to take great pride in what they achieved.

Would maybe beat sitting on the dole for both the individuals concerned and society?

Your suggestion could have a touch of the Famine Roads Syndrome about it if not done in a coherent way.
There was some good work done on CE schemes in this regard in the 80s - I’m thinking of Lock’s Distillery in Kilbeggan which is a fantastic project and now employs quite a few people there as well as having an enormous spin-off for the local economy because of its success as a tourist attraction.

I’d imagine the best way to do it is to have the departments responsible for heritage, employment and social welfare work together on a grant scheme that would allow local communities to be autonomous and answer their own needs. There are preservation and historical groups across the country who’d love this opportunity, once the paperwork isn’t too onerous. Pobal, who provide a relatively small amount of funding to the Lock’s committee who say it requires so much paperwork, no new group would cope with it.

But it’s a case of location, location, location when it comes to this kind of shabby chic.

There’s a degree of blindness about these buildings - those which look handsomely derelict in the countryside like relics of another era are spoken of with hushed voices; place those buildings within or on the outskirts of an urban area and they’d seem considerably less romantic.

There’s hardly a local authority in the country that doesn’t get representations from locals who can’t bear the sight of crumbling monstrosities in towns, owned by people who can’t afford or can’t be bothered to maintain.

There’s a huge legacy from the Brits here in Crosshaven, Cork guarding the entrance to Cork Harbour - Fort Camden - granite buildings, 2 jetties, 3 or 4 tunnels for ammunition and personnel, houses, storage buildings etc. AFAIK it was “sold” to the County Council for £1 by the Dept of Defense 20 odd years ago. Absolutely nothing has been done with it apart from hundreds of thousands spend on securing it from “trespassers” ie locals like me who are curious or guys fishing. It is not terribly interesting from an architectural point of view, and there is little of the guns and so on so it is not a great tourist attraction as it is right now. However it could have potential - something marine-related, craft industry/artist shops, innovation or incubation centre, offices - the view is fabulous and the air is clean, parking is open, I would jump at the chance to have a small business there. Alas nothing is being done - there is some dusty “plan” that vaguely talks about wind-surfing centre, museum, tourist office… My suspicion is that certain large developers have their eyes on it for up-market housing - admittedly it would be a fabulous location - and some day soon large amounts of cash in brown envelopes will be passed out and when pressure comes on local authorities to dispose of land-banks to raise funds a deal will be done.
I can see Spike Island turning into a very exclusive “gated” (bridge) development some day too…

I see abandoned ireland has got a book out
might be worth checking out if anybody is passing easons