Thursday, 22 March 2018

On Ploughman's Hill

I enjoyed an organized walk through the new Ploughman's Hill walk at Mount Stewart estate yesterday.

For the benefit of those readers who have not been following the narrative, Mount Stewart, on the Ards Peninsula, County Down, was the magnificent County Down seat of the Marquesses of Londonderry.

It is now a property of the National Trust.

Ranger Toby met about fifteen of us at the courtyard behind the mansion.

We all ambled past the lake, and just beyond it there is the beginning of the new trail.

Ploughman's Hill Walk has not officially opened yet, though it is expected to open imminently.

En route a new red squirrel hide is being erected in the midst of wonderful silvan scenery.

Toby estimates that we have about 35 to 40 red squirrels on the estate presently, and numbers are expected to grow significantly in the next few years.

The gravel path leads to open woodland, which swerves round towards the sea and close to the Twin Lodges on the Portaferry Road.

Toby really knows his stuff and provided us with abundant facts and figures relating to the estate.

When our walk finished I didn't linger because it was a bit chilly.

I'm very glad to see that a brand new shepherd's hut, the Mark Two, is in situ and is currently being fitted out.

Drenagh House


This is a junior branch (which settled in Ulster during the reign of JAMES VI of Scotland) of the ancient Scottish house of MACAUSLANE, of Buchanan, which sprang from

JOHN MACAUSLANE, who acquired the lands of Buchanan, on The Lennox, and from whom they descended in direct male succession to Sir Walter MacAuslane, 11th Laird, who lived at the time of ROBERT II.

The heir male is said to have settled in Ulster during the reign of the Scottish king, JAMES VI.

He had two sons, of whom the elder,

ANDREW MACAUSLANE, was grandfather of 

COLONEL ROBERT McCAUSLAND (c1685-c1734), of Fruit Hill, near Limavady, styled his "cousin" in the will of Captain Oliver McCausland, of Strabane, of which he was left executor and also a legatee.

He had estates in the parish of Cappagh, County Tyrone, and succeeded under the will of the Rt Hon William Conolly to considerable property in County Londonderry.

Colonel McCausland married, in 1709, Hannah, daughter of William Moore, of Garvey, and widow of James Hamilton, junior, of Strabane, and by her left surviving issue,
CONOLLY, his heir;
Marcus, of Daisy Hill;
Frederick, of Streeve Hill;
Sarah; Rebecca; Hannah.
The eldest son,

CONOLLY McCAUSLAND (1713-94), of Fruit Hill, wedded, in 1742, Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas Gage, of Magilligan, and eventually sole heir to her brother, Hodson Gage, of Bellarena, and left issue, 
CONOLLY, his heir;
Hannah; Elizabeth; Sarah; Sydney.
The elder son,

CONOLLY McCAUSLAND (1754-1827), of Fruit Hill, espoused, in 1778, Theodosia, sister to Maurice, 3rd Baron Hartland,  and daughter of Thomas Mahon, of Strokestown House, by Jane, daughter of Maurice, Lord Brandon, and had issue,
MARCUS, his heir;
Conolly Robert;
Frederick Hervey;
Jane; Elizabeth; Eleanor; Theodosia.
Mr McCausland, who assumed the name of GAGE in 1816, was succeeded by his eldest surviving son,

MARCUS McCAUSLAND DL (1787-1862), of Fruit Hill, who married, in 1815, Marianne, daughter of Thomas Tyndall, of The Fort, near Bristol, and had issue,
Marianne; Theodosia Sydney; Henrietta Caroline; Katherine Geraldine;
Eleanor Georgiana; Julia; Georgiana; Adelaide.
Mr McCausland was succeeded by his only son,

CONOLLY THOMAS McCAUSLAND JP DL (1828-1902), of Drenagh, High Sheriff of County Londonderry, 1866, Captain, Derry Militia, who wedded, in 1867, Laura, second daughter of St Andrew, 15th Baron St John of Bletso, and had issue,
Edmund Thomas William;
Eleanor Marianna Katharine; Lucia; Geraldine; Julia Sydney; Lettice Theodosia; Emily Octavia.
Captain McCausland was succeeded by his eldest son,

THE RT HON MAURICE MARCUS McCAUSLAND (1872-1938), of Drenagh, High Sheriff of County Londonderry, 1908, Lord-Lieutenant of County Londonderry, 1926-38, who wedded, in 1902, Eileen Leslie, second daughter of Robert Alexander Ogilby, of Pellipar, County Londonderry, and had issue,
Helen Laura, b 1903;
Eileen Mary, b 1910.
Mr McCausland was succeeded by his only son,

CONOLLY ROBERT McCAUSLAND MC JP DL (1906-68), of Drenagh, Lieutenant-Colonel, Irish Guards, who espoused, in 1932, the Lady Margaret Edgcumbe, daughter of 6th Earl of Mount Edgcumbe, and had issue,
Antony Richard, b 1941;
Piers Conolly, b 1949;
Mary Fania; Caroline Ann.
Colonel McCausland was succeeded by his eldest son,

MARCUS EDGCUMBE McCAUSLAND (1933-72), of Drenagh, who married, in 1962, June Patricia MacAdam, and had issue,
Shane Francis Marcus, b 1964;
Marianne Laura, b 1970.
In 1972, as an officer in the Ulster Defence Regiment, Captain McCausland became the first soldier to be murdered by the Official IRA.

DRENAGH, near Limavady, is the finest demesne in County Londonderry and one of the noblest country houses in Ulster.

Drenagh House, formerly known as Fruithill, was inherited by Colonel Robert McCausland, agent of the Rt Hon William "Speaker" Conolly, who had purchased the estate from the Phillips family.

Colonel McCausland erected the first house a few hundred yards south-east of the present mansion, overlooking the Glen Plantation.

The original house was extended in 1796, and was said to have had a fine demesne with well laid out walks and plantations.

The walled garden of that period is still retained along with one barn and a gardener’s house.

The house had a different avenue approach from the old Coleraine Road and this can still be discerned from early maps.

Before the old house was abandoned, a new avenue approach was made to the house from the new Coleraine Road (now Broad Road).

During this period (ca 1830) W Hargrave was commissioned to consider designs for a new house which was three storeys with canted bays.

However, before these plans could materialise into buildings, both McCausland and Hargrave died and the present gate lodge, known as Logan’s Lodge, or the east lodge of ca 1830, is all that was built of Hargrave’s design.

Charles Lanyon, who arrived in County Antrim as surveyor in 1836, was commissioned to prepare designs for house, offices and outhouses; and these appear to have reached fruition about 1840.

At the same time, the west avenue approach was changed and the west lodge was built to Lanyon’s specifications.

Pleasant gardens were extended in the Glen, with a viewing platform having impressive niche and fountain below and beyond a pool and parterre.

Nothing remains of the former house.

Today Drenagh demesne comprises 1,000 acres.

It comprises two storeys, using an agreeable pinkish sandstone ashlar.

There is a five-bay entrance front, with a recessed central bay and a single-storey Ionic portico whose outer columns are coupled.

The adjoining front is of six bays, with a pedimented breakfront which is emphasized by three massive pilasters supporting the pediment.

There is a lower service wing at the side; a balustraded parapet round the roof and on the portico.

There is a magnificent single-storey, top-lit central hall with screens of fluted Corinthian columns.

An elegant double staircase, with exquisite cast-iron balusters, rises from behind one of the screens.

There are also rich plasterwork ceilings in the hall, over the staircase and in the drawing-room.

The morning-room and dining-room have more modest ceilings.

The outbuildings are extensive.

A vista through the gap in the trees beyond the entrance front boasts an idyllic landscape far below.

Most notable is the Chinese Garden, with its circular "moon gate", developed by the Lady Margaret McCausland in the 1960s.

The demesne itself is part-walled and dates from the early 18th century.

There are fine woodland, parkland and shelter belt trees.

The ground within the demesne is undulating, descending to the Castle River running to the south of the house and to the Curly River to the north and east.

Neither river is used as an ornamental feature.

An unusual Italianate high balustraded terrace, with a commanding view point, formerly looked over an extensive 19th century Italian Garden, which is now overgrown.

The vista at the present time overlooks what has become dense woodland, including exotics and rhododendrons.

A water garden in the foreground includes a handsome stone pond built in the 1960s to the designs of Frances Rhodes.

The '‘Moon Garden'’ was also designed by Frances Rhodes in 1968.

It is an enclosed area influenced by both Chinese and Arts and Crafts garden design, which remains fully planted up.

It incorporates pre-1830s office buildings.

Outside is the ‘Orbit Garden’, also by Rhodes, planted with shrubs, trees and herbaceous material.

An area south east of and adjacent to the house had a late 20th century ornamental garden, which is now grassed.

The walled garden is used for nursery planting.

It was enlarged after the present house was built. Logan’s Lodge, 1830 by Hargrave, pre-dates the present house.

The main entrance gate lodge, gates and screen are ca 1840 by Lanyon.

Streeve, the dower house, is within the demesne and has its own garden.

Images courtesy of Conolly McCausland.   First published in February, 2010.

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Gussie's Veggie Diet

JEEVES:  'I regret to inform you, sir, that Miss Bassett has insisted on Mr Fink-Nottle adopting a vegetarian diet. His mood is understandably disgruntled and rebellious.'

   I tottered. In my darkest hour I had never anticipated anything as bad as this. You wouldn't think it to look at him, because he's small and shrimplike and never puts on weight, but Gussie loves food.

   Watching him tucking into his rations at the Drones [club], a tapeworm would raise its hat respectfully, knowing that it was in the presence of a master.

   Cut him off, therefore, from the roasts and boileds and particularly from cold steak and kidney pie, a dish of which he is inordinately fond, and you turned him into something fit for treasons, stratagems and spoils, as the fellow said - the sort of chap who would break any engagement as soon as look at you.

   At the moment of my entry I had been about to light a cigarette, and now the lighter fell from my nerveless hand.

 BERTIE:  'She's made him become a vegetarian?'

   'So Mr Fink-Nottle informed me, sir.'

   'No chops?'

   'No, sir.'

   'No steaks?'

   'No, sir.'

   'Just spinach and similar garbage?'

   'So I gather, sir.'

House of Jocelyn

EGIDIUS JOSSELIN, a nobleman of Brittany, in France, took up his abode in England during the reign of EDWARD THE CONFESSOR, and left a son,

SIR GILBERT JOCELYNwho returned to Normandy and came back into England with the CONQUEROR, from whom he obtained extensive territorial grants in Lincolnshire, among which were the lordships of Sempringham and Tyrington.

Sir Gilbert had two sons, namely,

Gilbert of Sempringham (c1083-1190), the elder, devoting himself to a religious life, retired to Sempringham Priory, where he had founded the order of St Gilbert, known as the GILBERTINES, possessed, at the dissolution of religious houses, twenty-one monasteries in England, containing nearly 1,200 persons.

This Gilbert died at the exceptionally advanced age of 106, and was canonized by POPE INNOCENT III in 1202.

GEOFFREY DE JOCELYN, the younger son, married the daughter of John Blisset, and from that marriage descended lineally,

THOMAS JOCELYNwho wedded, in 1249, Maude, daughter and co-heir of Sir John Hyde, of Hyde Hall, Hertfordshire, and granddaughter, maternally, of John, Baron Sudeley, of Gloucestershire; by which marriage the Jocelyns obtained that estate, which continued for a very lengthy period in the family.

From this Thomas, we pass to his descendant,

SIR RALPH JOCELYN KBcitizen and draper of London, of which city he was sheriff, 1458, and Lord Mayor, 1464.

In 1467, Sir Ralph represented the city of London in parliament, and was again Lord Mayor in 1476.

The elder brother of this opulent citizen,

THOMAS JOCELYN, of Hyde Hall, was great-grandfather of

SIR THOMAS JOCELYN KB, of Hyde Hall, who married Dorothy, daughter of Sir Geoffrey Gates, Knight, and was succeeded, in 1562, by his eldest son,

RICHARD JOCELYN, of Hyde Hall, whose grandson,

SIR ROBERT JOCELYN (1623-1712), Knight, of Hyde Hall, and of Newhall, High Sheriff of Hertfordshire, 1677.

Mr Jocelyn was created a baronet in 1665, denominated of Hyde Hall, Hertfordshire.

He wedded Jane, daughter and co-heir of Robert Strange, of Wiltshire, and had nine sons and five daughters; of whom
STRANGE, 2nd but eldest surviving son, inherited the title and fortune;
Edward, in holy orders;
Sir Robert was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR STRANGE JOCELYN, 2nd Baronet (c1651-1734), who wedded Mary, daughter of Tristram Conyers, of Walthamstow, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR JOHN (1689-1741); at whose decease, unmarried, the baronetcy devolved upon his only brother,

SIR CONYERS JOCELYN, 4th Baronet (1703-78), MD, High Sheriff of Hertfordshire, 1745, who died a bachelor, when the baronetcy devolved upon the son and successor of

THE RT HON ROBERT JOCELYN (1688-1756); (refer to Thomas, son of 1st Baronet), a lawyer of great eminence, who filled the offices of Solicitor-General and Attorney-General in the reigns of GEORGE I and GEORGE II, and was constituted LORD CHANCELLOR OF IRELAND, 1739.

His lordship, MP for Granard, 1725-7, and for Newtownards, 1727-39, was subsequently twelve times one of the Lords Justices of Ireland, and died in the government, 1756.

He was elevated to the peerage, in 1743, by the title of Baron Newport, of Newport, County Tipperary; and advanced to a viscountcy, in 1755, as Viscount Jocelyn

His lordship espoused firstly, Charlotte, daughter and co-heir of Charles Anderson, of Worcester, and had a son,
ROBERT, his successor.
He wedded secondly, in 1754, Frances, daughter of Thomas Claxton, of Dublin, and widow of Richard, 1st Earl of Ross.

His lordship was succeeded by his only son,

ROBERT, 2nd Viscount (1731-97), who succeeded to the baronetcy of the family upon the decease of his kinsman, Sir Conyers, 4th Baronet, in 1770.

Tollymore Park

His lordship, Auditor-General of Ireland, was created, in 1771, EARL OF RODEN.

He married, in 1752, the Lady Anne Hamilton, only surviving daughter of James, Earl of Clanbrassil, and eventually heir of her brother, James, the last earl, and had issue,
ROBERT, his successor;
Harriet; Caroline; Charlotte; Sophia; Louisa; Emelia.
His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,

ROBERT, 2nd Earl (1756-1820), KP, PC, MP, who was appointed a Knight of St Patrick, 1806.

Dundalk House

His lordship espoused, in 1788, Frances Theodosia, eldest daughter of the Very Rev Robert Bligh, Dean of Elphin, and niece of John, 1st Earl of Darnley, and had issue,
ROBERT, his successor;
James Bligh, Lieutenant RN;
Frances Theodosia; Anne.
He was succeeded by his eldest son,

ROBERT, 3rd Earl (1788-1870), KP, PC, who wedded, in 1813, Maria Frances Catherine, second daughter of Thomas, Baron le Despencer.

His lordship was installed a Knight of St Patrick, 1821.

Hyde Hall

The 3rd Earl was installed as a knight of the Most Illustrious Order of St Patrick in 1821.
  • John Strange Jocelyn, 5th Earl (1823–97);
The heir apparent is the present holder's only son, Shane Robert Henning Jocelyn, styled Viscount Jocelyn.

Former seats ~ Hyde Hall, Hertfordshire; Tollymore Park, County Down; Dundalk House, County Louth.

First published in February, 2012.

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.