This part of the estate is across the main Portaferry Road, opposite the demesne itself.
There's a circular concrete base in the ground, with a rusty, iron rail within it.
Look inland and you will see a sunken wilderness, overgrown with gorse and long grass.
The concrete base was constructed for a wooden, revolving gazebo.
The sunken wilderness is all that remains of Lord and Lady Londonderry's beautiful salt-water, kidney-shaped swimming-pool.
It was the most picturesque, splendid pool I have ever seen; tranquil and heavenly, surrounded by luxuriant flora, including palm trees.
On the patio beside the pool there were changing-rooms and a little fountain.
The base of the fountain and pool was painted aquamarine.
The changing-rooms were adjacent, their back against a high, stone wall.
I seem to recall a small stone plaque, or lozenge, between the cabins with Charles and Edith Londonderry's monogram.
This wall surrounded three sides of the pool area; and there was an elevated bank at the seaward side with stone steps and various features, like stone benches.
I think there was a diving-board, but I cannot be certain.
The pool was designed and built, it is believed, in the 1930s by Edith, Marchioness of Londonderry DBE, whose husband was the 7th Marquess.
They were really the last of the Londonderrys to live at Mount Stewart.
Their daughter, Lady Mairi, lived at Mount Stewart till her death in 2009.
The pool lasted barely sixty years.
This was a haven where family members, including the Lady Jane (The Lady Rayne), the Lady Annabel (Goldsmith), their brother Alastair, Viscount Castlereagh, and other friends spent many happy summers in the 1940s, playing games, swimming and picnicking.
It was still serviceable, though a bit decrepit, by the mid-eighties.
We did our best to restore it and even managed to get water from the lough flowing in and out again.
By the 1990s, however, gangs of beer-swilling vandals had requisitioned the pool.
Its location across the main road cut it off from the rest of the estate, so it became vulnerable.
Alas everything, including the walls, was completely demolished thereafter.
Imagine the scenario: The owner is advised, in the strongest terms, that, were one of the trespassers to injure themselves, fatally or otherwise, the owner could be held liable.
Either secure the swimming-pool and its environs from trespassers; risk prosecution; or remove the problem entirely.
Obviously the latter, simplest solution was chosen, and a decision was taken at the highest level.
Given such a beautiful creation, it cannot have been taken lightly.
I have taken a few pictures, including a stone memorial cross to some staff on the estate who perished at sea.
I adored this place. I still miss it.
This is my tribute.
First published in April 2009. Londonderry arms courtesy of European Heraldry.