Saturday, 25 October 2014

Ballygally Castle

JAMES SHAW established himself in the early 1600s at Greenock, in Scotland. In 1605, his son, 

JOHN or JAMES SHAW, and Patrick Montgomery, were appointed as attorneys to act on behalf of Hugh Montgomery, in the division of Con O’Neill’s estate.

This John or James is described in The Montgomery Manuscripts as one of Hugh Montgomery’s ‘prime friends’.

In 1606, one of the first members of the family to accompany Sir Hugh Montgomery to Ulster was his wife’s uncle,

PATRICK SHAW, who later became laird of Kelsoland (Greenock).

The Montgomerys and Shaws were closely related through marriage: Sir Hugh married James Shaw’s eldest daughter Elizabeth. Sir Hugh’s sister, Jean, married Patrick Shaw (2nd son of John Shaw, of Greenock).

As the Scots settlement in east Ulster expanded, some of the original Montgomery tenants moved to County Antrim.

James Shaw (possibly the John Shaw mentioned above) and his wife, Isabella Brisbane, moved to Ballygally, near Larne, County Antrim.

After Shaw came to Ballygally in 1613, he came into possession of a sub-grant of land, at the low rent of 24 pounds per annum, from the Earl of Antrim.

It was on this land that Ballygally Castle was built, in 1625.

In 1657, the Shaws acquired the Brisbane Estate (James Shaw, son of James Shaw of Ballygally, married his cousin, Elizabeth Brisbane).


BALLYGALLY CASTLE, near Larne, County Antrim,  is a four-storey, rectangular tower in Scottish style with a steeply-pitched roof.

There are cone-topped corner bartizans and gable lucernes.

The walls are of a rough-cast render, though some stonework is exposed.

Over the main entrance door, leading to the tower, is a carved stone tablet bearing the date 1625, and the legend God's Providence Is My Inheritance.


It is likely that the original tower-house was more extensive than the current remains of the ancient Castle indicate.

It served as a place of refuge for protestants during the civil wars.

During the rebellion of 1641 the Irish garrison, stationed at Glenarm, tried, on many occasions, to take the castle, though they never succeeded in gaining entry.

Ballygally passed through many troubles and was used again as a fortress in the 18th Century.

Towards the mid-18th Century, considerable additions were made to the castle.

Henry Shaw married a Miss Hamilton, accompanied by her two sisters, all of whom resided at the castle.

In 1799, William Shaw, the last member of the family to live at the castle, succeeded to the estate.

In the early 1800s, the Shaws lost their lands and wealth, and the estate was sold to the Agnew family for £15,400.

Anna Shaw, of Ballygally, was married to Patrick Agnew, who died in 1667

At one time it was known as Shaw's Castle.

The castle, for some years, served as a coastguard station; then became the residence of the Rev Classon Porter and his family, who lived there for many years.


It was subsequently acquired by the Moore family who, in turn, sold Ballygally to Mr Cyril Lord in the early 1950s.

Mr Lord refurbished it as a hotel.

The well-known hotelier Sir William Hastings, CBE, purchased  Ballygally Castle Hotel from Mr Lord in 1966 for £40,000.

*****

WHEN BALLYGALLY CASTLE was built, it was known that Ulster was unsettled, so the castle was designed as a place of defence as well as one of residence.

This is a 17th century plantation castle, largely unchanged and intact, apart from sash windows.

It was originally constructed mostly local stone, in the style of a French chateau, with high walls, a steep roof, dormer windows and corner turrets.

The walls were about five feet thick, with loopholes for musketry.

The stairs were built of stone, and spiral in construction.

Through the outer hall ran an open stream of water for the use of the inhabitants, in case of siege; and above the dormer windows were carvings, still traceable today.

Outside were originally two courtyards, one surrounded by high walls; the other inside the higher walls.

The inner courtyard was marked by two stone pillar mounted with round stone balls.

Inside the courtyard were stables, coach houses, byres, sheep pens, a brew-house and dovecot.

Outside the courtyard there was a wash-house and a scutching-mill and, in the little glen on the other side of the river, was a corn mill.


Today, Ballygally Castle is much enlarged and modernised with 54 en suite bedrooms.

Nevertheless, the old castle has been preserved and retains many of its original features, including several turreted bedrooms.

First published in October, 2012.

Friday, 24 October 2014

New DLs

APPOINTMENT OF DEPUTY LIEUTENANTS

Mr Robert Scott OBE, Lord-Lieutenant of County Tyrone, has been pleased to appoint:
Mrs Meta Bell MBE, Cookstown, County Tyrone;
The Rev Dr Isaac Thompson TD, Cookstown, County Tyrone


To be Deputy Lieutenants of the County,


His Commission bearing date the 17th October, 2014

Finaghy House

Charley of Seymour Hill
EDWARD S CHARLEY OWNED 158 ACRES OF LAND AT FINAGHY HOUSE, COUNTY ANTRIM

The family of CHARLEY or CHORLEY, passing over from the north of England, settled in Ulster in the 17th century, at first at Belfast, where they were owners of house property for two hundred years; and afterwards at Finaghy, County Antrim, where  

RALPH CHARLEY (1664-1746), of Finaghy House, County Antrim, left a son,

JOHN CHARLEY (1712-93), of Finaghy House, who died aged 81, leaving a son and successor,

JOHN CHARLEY (1744-1812), of Finaghy House, who married, in 1783, Anne Jane, daughter of Richard Wolfenden, of Harmony Hill, County Down.
 


His second son, 

MATTHEW CHARLEY (1788-1846), of Finaghy House, married, in 1819, Mary Anne, daughter of Walter Roberts, of Colin House. His eldest son,

JOHN STOUPPE CHARLEY JP (1825-78), of Finaghy House, and of Arranmore Island, County Donegal,

a magistrate for counties Donegal, Antrim, and Belfast; High Sheriff of County Donegal, 1875-6. Mr Charley owned 6,498 acres of land in County Donegal.
This gentleman married, in 1851, Mary, daughter of Francis Forster JP, of Roshine Lodge, County Donegal. His third son,

WILLIAM CHARLEY, of Seymour Hill, Dunmurry, married, in 1817, Isabella, eldest daughter of William Hunter JP, of Dunmurry; and dying in 1838, was succeeded by his eldest son,

JOHN CHARLEY, of Seymour Hill,  who died unmarried in 1843, aged 25, and was succeeded by his brother,


 WILLIAM CHARLEY JP DL (1826-1904), of Seymour Hill, who wedded, in 1856, Ellen Anna Matilda, daughter of Edward Johnson JP, of Ballymacash, near Lisburn, and granddaughter of Rev Philip Johnson JP DL. 
Mr Charley was juror of Great Exhibition, 1851; chairman of J & W Charley & Company. He wrote the book Flax And Its Products.
He was succeeded by his son, 

EDWARD JOHNSON CHARLEY (1859-1932), of Seymour Hill; whose sixth son, 

COLONEL HAROLD RICHARD CHARLEY CBE DL (1875-1956), of Seymour Hill,
officer, 1st Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles; fought in the Boer War, and 1st World War, with 2nd Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles; wounded and became a PoW. In 1916 he started workshops for interned British servicemen at Murren. He was Officer-in-Charge for Technical Instruction for servicemen interned in Switzerland, 1917; Commissioner, British Red Cross Society, Switzerland, 1918; commander, 1st Royal Ulster Rifles, 1919-23. CBE, 1920; City Commandant, Ulster Special Constabulary, 1924-52; originator of the British Legion Car Park Attendants scheme (adopted throughout Great Britain); Honorary Colonel, 1938, Antrim Coast Regiment (Territorial Army). 
His eldest son, 

COLONEL WILLIAM ROBERT (Robin) HUNTER CHARLEY OBE (b 1924), married Catherine Janet, daughter of William Sinclair Kingan, in 1960.


In 1943 he was enlisted in the Royal Ulster Rifles; fought in 2nd World War, and the Korean War; Commanding Officer, OTC Queen's University, Belfast, 1965-68; Officer, Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem. 

He retired from the army in 1971; was on Staff in 1972 at Northern Ireland Polytechnic; lived in 1976 at Seymour Lodge, Larch Hill, Craigavad, County Down.

Colonel Charley was appointed OBE (civil) in 1989, for services to The Forces Help Society and Lord Roberts' Workshops.
FINAGHY HOUSE, Belfast, was purchased from Mr Richard Woods, in 1727, by Ralph Charley, a prosperous Belfast merchant.

In 1727, it is recorded that Finaghy House was
...an imposing mansion in a large park with extensive outhouses and stables.
The Charley family's armorial bearings were on the outside gables and on a landing half-way up the wide, oak banister stairs.


The coat-of-arms is still engraved on the landing window.

At the time of the house sale in 1885, one of the conditions of sale was that, if the house was demolished, the coat-of-arms was to be returned to the Charley family.

The Charleys were pioneers in the linen industry and it is said that looms were set up in this house in the 18th century.

The new process of bleaching linen cloth with chlorine was perhaps discovered and first used here.

Every 12th of July for about 150 years, until 1972, the Belfast Orangemen used to walk to The Field at Finaghy.


This field was owned by the Charleys, who granted it in perpetuity on the Twelfth to the Orange Order, the "rent" being that the lesson should always be read from the Charley bible during the religious part of the ceremony. 

Finaghy House, originally known as Ballyfinaghy House, was built in 1727.

In 1729, it was sold by Richard Woods to Ralph Charley.

The house became known as Finaghy House, which means “fair fields”, as it was then surrounded by green fields.

Five generations of the Charley family lived at Finaghy.

As pioneers in  the linen industry, it is said that the looms were set up in this house.

The Charleys developed the linen industry at Seymour Hill in 1822 and Mossvale in 1830.

In 1885, Major and Mrs Brewis purchased Finaghy House from Mrs Mary Stewart Charley, widow of John Strouppe Charley.
The Brewises bred corgi dogs: They named one of their corgis “The Queen Mother”. The first corgi owned by Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother was bred in this house. 
In 1930, Major and Mrs Tyler were the owners of Finaghy House; and in 1960, the house was acquired by the trustees and converted into a residential home to accommodate twenty-four residents.

Finaghy House is now Faith House Eventide Home, a comfortable retirement home in the middle of a large housing estate.

First published in March, 2011.

Gobbins Cliff Path


In 2010, I visited the peninsula of Islandmagee, in County Antrim.

I motored along the Antrim coast, parked at a lay-by, fetched my camera, and ambled down a track which leads to The Gobbins, the former cliff path built in 1902 as a tourist attraction.

The BBC has written an article here.

I didn't walk very far along the old path because I was on my own and, quite frankly, I am not particularly fond of heights; especially if they are precarious, as the ruinous Gobbins path presently is!


Further along the coast there is an intriguing derelict farmstead which, it could be supposed, is the Gobbins Farm named on the memorial obelisk to two First World War fallen soldiers nearby:
To the memory of Lance Corporal Walter Newell, 6th Battalion, Black Watch, who fell in action in France on the 13th July 1915. Erected by his friends with whom he spent many happy days at the Gobbins Farm.
And at its base:
Captain W V Edwards, Royal Dublin Fusiliers ...


The prospect of revisiting the newly-restored Gobbins path in 2015 generates excitement. 

Revised.  First published in July, 2010.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Dundrum House

THE VISCOUNTS HAWARDEN WERE MAJOR LANDOWNERS IN COUNTY TIPPERARY, WITH 15,272 ACRES


The family of MAUDE deduces its descent from

EUSTACE DE MONTE ALTO (c1045-1112), styled The Norman Hunter,
who came to the assistance of Hugh Lupus, 1st Earl of Chester, at the period of the Conquest; and having participated in the glory of that great event, shared in the spoil, and obtained, amongst other considerable grants, the castle, lordship, and manor of Hawarden, Flintshire.
Eustace was succeeded by his eldest son,

HUGH DE MONTE ALTO, the second baron under Hugh Lupus, who gave a large portion of his possessions to the monks.

He was succeeded by his brother,

ROGER DE MONTE ALTO, 3rd Baron, to whom succeeded his son,

RALPH DE MONTALT, 4th Baron, sewer to Ranulf, 6th Earl of Chester, who had two sons and a daughter, viz.
ROBERT, his heir;
Simon;
Beatrix.
The elder son,

ROBERT DE MONTALT, first baron by tenure, erected, during the reign of HENRY II, Mold Castle, in Flintshire.

This Robert, who was steward of the Palatine of Chester, espoused Emma, daughter of Sir Robert Delaval, and had issue,
ROBERT, 2nd Baron by tenure;
Ralph;
John;
Matthew;
Simon;
William, in holy orders;
Roger;
ANDOMAR.
The lineal descendant of this gentleman,

CHRISTOPHER MAUDE, of Holling Hall and Woodhouse, patron of Ilkley in 1554, had issue,
THOMAS, his heir;
John, of Stainland;
Isabel.
The elder son,

THOMAS MAUDE, of West Riddlesden, died in 1633. His grandson,

ROBERT MAUDE, of West Riddlesden and Ripon, Yorkshire, patron of Ilkley in 1640, disposed of his English estates, and purchased others in counties Kilkenny and Tipperary, whither he removed.

Dying in 1685, he was succeeded by his only son,

ANTHONY MAUDE, of Dundrum, high sheriff of Tipperary, 1686; MP for Cashel, 1695; who was succeeded by his only son and successor,

ROBERT MAUDE MP, who was created a baronet in 1705.

Sir Robert wedded Elizabeth, daughter and heir of Francis Cornwallis, of Abermarles, Carmarthenshire, by whom he had several children.

He died in 1750, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

THE RT HON SIR THOMAS MAUDE, 2nd Baronet; MP for Tipperary, 1761-76; privy counsellor, 1768.

Sir Thomas was elevated to the peerage, in 1776, as BARON DE MONTALT; but dying without issue, in 1777, the barony ceased, while the baronetcy devolved upon his brother,

SIR CORNWALLIS MAUDE (1729-1803).This gentleman represented the borough of Roscommon in parliament, and was elevated to the peerage, as VISCOUNT HAWARDEN, in 1793.

His lordship married firstly, in 1756, Letitia, daughter of Thomas Vernon, of Hanbury Hall, Worcestershire, by whom he had one daughter, Elizabeth Letitia.

He espoused secondly, in 1766, Mary, daughter of Philip Allen, and niece of Ralph Allen, of Prior Park, Somerset, by whom he had,
THOMAS RALPH, his successor;
Sophia Maria;
Emma.
His lordship wedded thirdly, Anne Isabella, daughter of Thomas Monck, barrister, and niece of the Viscount Monck, by whom he had issue,
CORNWALLIS, of whom hereafter;
Robert William Henry, Dean of Clogher, and Archdeacon of Dublin;
James Ashley (Sir), captain RN; KCH, CB;
John Charles, in holy orders;
Francis, commander RN; CB;
Isabella Elizabeth; Georgiana;
Alicia; Charlotte; Mary Anne;
Emily; Catherine.
His lordship died in 1803, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

THOMAS RALPH (1767-1807), 2nd Viscount, who espoused Lady Frances Anne Agar, only daughter of His Grace Charles, Earl of Normanton, Lord Archbishop of Dublin; but dying without issue, the honours devolved upon his half-brother,

CORNWALLIS, 3rd Viscount (1780-1856).

*****

CORNWALLIS [MAUDE] (1817-1905), 4th Viscount,
Captain, 2nd Life Guards, 1849-53; a Representative Peer for Ireland (Conservative), 1862-1905; Lord in Waiting, 1866-68, 1874-80 and 1885-86; Deputy Speaker of the House of Lords, 1882; Lord-Lieutenant of Tipperary, 1885-1905.
In 1886, Lord Hawarden was advanced to the dignity of an earldom, as EARL DE MONTALT.

Lord de Montalt was the last of the family to live at Dundrum House.

On Lord de Montalt's death, the earldom became extinct.

The other titles, however, devolved upon his cousin, Robert Henry [Maude], 5th Viscount.

The 9th and present Viscount lives in Kent.


DUNDRUM HOUSE, near Cashel, County Tipperary, was built about 1730, the nucleus of a fine estate once owned by the the O'Dwyers of Kilnamanagh.

The O'Dwyer estate was subsequently confiscated and Robert Maude was given all of the O'Dwyer land, including the O'Dwyer manor and castle of Dundrum.

This is a Palladian mansion, comprising a centre block of two storeys over a high basement, joined by short links to flanking pavilions.

The entrance front has seven bays, with a three-bay, pedimented breakfront.


There is an impressive, double-pedimented stable block at right-angles to the entrance front.

An additional storey, treated as an attic above the cornice, was added to the main block about 1890 by the 4th Viscount Hawarden (later 1st and last Earl de Montalt).

In 1909, when Dundrum House demesne was for sale, it was acquired by a religious order, who later established a Domestic Science College.

Until recently the mansion house was used as a retreat.

Having been acquired by Austin and Mary Crowe in 1978, with extensive renovation and restoration, Dundrum House was opened as a hotel in 1981.

First published in November, 2012.

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Greyabbey Wood


I was outdoors today with the National Trust Strangford Lough group.

We were at the little wood beside the village of Greyabbey, County Down.

Out jobs today included picking up litter, felling a few trees selectively, and erecting fence-posts.


Quick-drying cement is used for this purpose.

We all lunched in the changing-room beside the village soccer pitch, welcome shelter from somewhat inclement weather this morning.

I took home two sackfuls of logs (the wood isn't seasoned).


Any guesses what the implement above is?

Conway House

Charley of Seymour Hill


EDWARD CHARLEY OWNED 35 ACRES OF LAND AT CONWAY HOUSE, COUNTY ANTRIM

The family of CHARLEY or CHORLEY, passing over from the north of England, settled in Ulster in the 17th century, at first at Belfast, where they were owners of house property for two hundred years; and afterwards at Finaghy, County Antrim, where  

RALPH CHARLEY (1664-1746), of Finaghy House, County Antrim, left a son,

JOHN CHARLEY (1712-93), of Finaghy House, who died aged 81, leaving a son and successor,

JOHN CHARLEY (1744-1812), of Finaghy House, who married, in 1783, Anne Jane, daughter of Richard Wolfenden, of Harmony Hill, County Down.
 

His second son,

MATTHEW CHARLEY (1788-1846), of Finaghy House, married, in 1819, Mary Anne, daughter of Walter Roberts, of Colin House. His eldest son,

JOHN STOUPPE CHARLEY JP (1825-78), of Finaghy House, and of Arranmore Island, County Donegal,
a magistrate for counties Donegal, Antrim, and Belfast; High Sheriff of County Donegal, 1875-6. Mr Charley owned 6,498 acres of land in County Donegal.
This gentleman married, in 1851, Mary, daughter of Francis Forster JP, of Roshine Lodge, County Donegal. His third son,

WILLIAM CHARLEY, of Seymour Hill, Dunmurry, married, in 1817, Isabella, eldest daughter of William Hunter JP, of Dunmurry; and dying in 1838, was succeeded by his eldest son,

JOHN CHARLEY, of Seymour Hill,  who died unmarried in 1843, aged 25, and was succeeded by his brother, 

WILLIAM CHARLEY JP DL (1826-1904), of Seymour Hill, who wedded, in 1856, Ellen Anna Matilda, daughter of Edward Johnson JP, of Ballymacash, near Lisburn, and granddaughter of Rev Philip Johnson JP DL. 
Mr Charley was juror of Great Exhibition, 1851; chairman of J & W Charley & Company. He wrote the book Flax And Its Products.
He was succeeded by his son,

EDWARD JOHNSON CHARLEY (1859-1932), of Seymour Hill; whose sixth son, 

COLONEL HAROLD RICHARD CHARLEY CBE DL (1875-1956), of Seymour Hill,
officer, 1st Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles; fought in the Boer War, and 1st World War, with 2nd Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles; wounded and became a PoW. In 1916 he started workshops for interned British servicemen at Murren. He was Officer-in-Charge for Technical Instruction for servicemen interned in Switzerland, 1917; Commissioner, British Red Cross Society, Switzerland, 1918; commander, 1st Royal Ulster Rifles, 1919-23. CBE, 1920; City Commandant, Ulster Special Constabulary, 1924-52; originator of the British Legion Car Park Attendants scheme (adopted throughout Great Britain); Honorary Colonel, 1938, Antrim Coast Regiment (Territorial Army). 
His eldest son, 

COLONEL WILLIAM ROBERT (Robin) HUNTER CHARLEY OBE (b 1924), married Catherine Janet, daughter of William Sinclair Kingan, in 1960.

CONWAY HOUSE, Dunmurry, Belfast, was a two-storey Victorian mansion with a symmetrical front of two shallow, curved bows and a central projection.

A pillared and balustraded veranda ran on either side, joining to a single wing.

At the other end there was a pilastered conservatory.

An Italianate tower rose from the roof above a bracket cornice.

In 1852, William Charley, who had succeeded to Seymour Hill, gave land to his younger brother, Edward, (1827-68), to build a house for his first wife Mary.

Edward named it Conway after the local landowner, Lord Hertford, after one of his titles.

The house was then occupied, until his death, in 1892, by the Lord Bishop of Down, Connor and Dromore, the Rt Rev William Reeves.


Thereafter it was sold by the executors of Edward Charley's brother, William, to John D Barbour, of Hilden, father of Sir Milne Barbour Bt. 

Sir Milne lived at Conway for many years until his death in 1951.

At one time the Charley crest stood over the front door.

Conway House operated for many years as a hotel operated by Trusthouse Forte.

First published in February, 2011.