Monday, 30 September 2019

Woodbourne House


The family of Charley, or Chorley, passing over from the north of England, settled in Ulster in the 17th century, firstly 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, had a son, 

JOHN CHARLEY (1712-93), of Finaghy, who left 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, and had issue, 
JOHN, of Finaghy House (1784-1844), died unmarried;
MATTHEW, of Finaghy House;
WILLIAM, of Seymour Hill
The third son,

WILLIAM CHARLEY, of Seymour Hill, Dunmurry, married, in 1817, Isabella, eldest daughter of William Hunter JP, of Dunmurry, and died in 1838, having had issue,
JOHN, of Seymour Hill;
WILLIAM, succeeded his brother;
Edward, of Conway House;
Mary; Anne Jane; Eliza; Isabella; Emily.
The eldest son,

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

WILLIAM CHARLEY JP DL (1826-1904), of Seymour Hill, who married, in 1856, Ellen Anna Matilda, daughter of Edward Johnson JP, of Ballymacash, near Lisburn, and granddaughter of Rev Philip Johnson JP DL, and had issue,
William, 1857-1904;
EDWARD JOHNSON, of Seymour Hill;
John George Stewart, 1863-86;
Thomas Henry FitzWilliam, 1866-85;
Arthur Frederick, of Mossvale, b 1870;
Harold Richard;
Ellen Frances Isabella; Elizabeth Mary Florence; Emily Constance Jane; Wilhelmina M Isabel.
The second son,

EDWARD JOHNSON CHARLEY (1859-1932), of Seymour Hill, was succeeded by his sixth son,

COLONEL HAROLD RICHARD CHARLEY CBE DL (1875-1956), of Seymour Hill, 1st Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles; fought in the Boer War and First World War, with the 2nd Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles, and was 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 in 1917; Commissioner of British Red Cross Society, Switzerland, 1918; commander of the 1st Royal Ulster Rifles, 1919-23.

Appointed 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, born in 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.

WOODBOURNE HOUSE, Dunmurry, came into the possession of the Charleys when it was given to Mrs Mary Anne Charley (1797-1866) by her father on her marriage, in 1819, to Matthew Charley.

When Matthew and Mary moved to Finaghy House in 1844, Woodbourne was taken over by their son John Stouppe Charley.

In 1851, he married Mary Stewart (1832-1915), a daughter of Francis Foster JP, of Roshin Lodge, County Donegal.

Woodbourne House was said to have been a happy home.

It was named after a wood on one side and a burn, the Lady's River, on the other.

There was also a walled garden; an apple orchard; large yards and stables; byres for cows; barns for grain; a pigeon loft, a greenhouse, a pheasantry and a carpenter's shop.

The house had a large entrance hall with folding doors across it to screen off the stairs and back passages.

The Charley coat-of-arms adorned the folding screen.

Woodbourne House was closely associated with local shoots and it later became a hotel before development swamped the area. 

Having suffered bomb damage in the 1970s, the site became a fortified police station.  

First published in March, 2011.

The Ewart Baronets


WILLIAM EWART (1759-1851), of Hillsborough, County Down, married, in 1810, Mary Anne, daughter of John Rossman, and had issue,
WILLIAM, his heir;
Sarah Jane; Eliza.
Mr Ewart, of Glenbank House, an alderman of Belfast, was succeeded by his only son,

WILLIAM EWART JP (1817-89), of Glenbank, Belfast, who wedded, in 1840, Isabella Kelso, daughter of Lavens Mathewson, and had issue,
Lavens Mathewson, father of
Richard Hooker, father of
TALBOT EWART, 5th Baronet;
James Mathewson;
George Herbert;
Frederick William, grandfather of
Marianne; Lavinia.
Mr Ewart, Mayor of Belfast, 1859-60, MP for Belfast, 1878-89, was created a baronet in 1887, designated of Glenmachan House, County Down, and of Glenbank, Belfast.

He was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR WILLIAM QUARTUS EWART JP DL, 2nd Baronet (1844-1919), of Glenmachan House, High Sheriff of County Antrim, 1897, who espoused, in 1876, Mary Warren, daughter of Robert Heard, and had issue,
ROBERT HEARD, his successor;
Charles Gordon;
Charlotte Hope; Isabella Kelso; Mary Gundreda.
Sir William was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR ROBERT HEARD EWART, 3rd Baronet (1879-1939), who died unmarried, when the baronetcy devolved upon his cousin,

SIR LAVENS MATHEWSON ALGERNON EWART, 4th Baronet (1885-1939), who died unmarried, when the title reverted to his cousin,

SIR TALBOT EWART, 5th Baronet (1878-1959), who married, in 1913, Sydney Stuart, daughter of Louis P Henop, though the marriage was without issue, and the baronetcy devolved upon his cousin, 

SIR WILLIAM IVAN CECIL EWART, 6th Baronet (1919-95), DSC, High Sheriff of County Antrim, 1976, who married, in 1948, Pauline Chevallier, daughter of Wing-Commander Raphael Chevalier Preston, and had issue,
WILLIAM MICHAEL, his successor;
Susan Eveleen; Patricia Rébé.
Sir Ivan, Lieutenant, Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve Coastal Forces, was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, 1945; chairman, William Ewart & Sons, 1968-73; Chairman, Ewart Northern Ltd, 1973-77.

He was succeeded by his only son,

SIR WILLIAM MICHAEL EWART (b 1953), 7th and present Baronet, of Hillsborough, County Down.

THE EWARTS originally lived at Annahilt, near Hillsborough, County Down. The 1st Baronet's father, William Ewart (1789-1873), moved to Glenbank at Ligoniel and became an alderman of Belfast.

In 1716, Thomas Ewart was granted twenty acres for a lease of a farm in the townland of Carnreagh, Annahilt, near Hillsborough. Part of his agricultural activity involved the production of damask, which the then Linen Board encouraged.

The lease was renewed to his son Thomas in 1746; the latter's son William was more ambitious and sometime around 1790 set up his own concern at Ballymacarrett, then a village, now a suburb of Belfast, though he co-operated with the Hillsborough concern.

His business flourished, and he had agents outside Ulster.

He took his son, also William, into business with him and as William Ewart & Son set up an office and warehouse in Rosemary Street, Belfast, in 1814.

They were incorporated as William Ewart & Son in 1883.

The Ewart head office was at what has become known as the Ewart Building, formerly Bedford Street Weaving Factory, at 17 Bedford Street, opposite the Ulster Hall.

The tall, red-brick warehouses and weaving sheds at the rear have since been demolished.

Ewart's bought the building in 1876.

They also ran mills at Crumlin Road; Ligoniel; Ballysillan; and Matier Street, all in Belfast.

During Victorian times, Ewart's was the largest manufacturer of linen in the world.

The principal seat of the Ewart family was Glenmachan House (below), which was set in its own grounds off Old Holywood Road in east Belfast.

Glenmachan House in the 1970s

It is thought that the land at Glenmachan was sold by Sir Thomas McClure to the prominent Belfast architect of the time, Thomas Jackson, who proceeded to build Glenmachan House as his own residence; though sold it to Sir William Ewart some time thereafter.

Glenmachan was a relatively large house with stabling and a conservatory.

About 1894 a fire broke out in the stables.

The hay loft was seriously damaged, according to a local newspaper.

The grounds extended to 33 acres in 1876.

Glenmachan remained in ownership of the Ewart family till about 1976.

Thereafter, it became neglected and derelict, the sweeping lawns reverting to fields.

Despite some strong local opposition, Glenmachan House and grounds were finally sold to a property developer ca 1990, demolished and turned into a new housing development.

Glenmachan House is not to be confused with Glenmachan Tower, further along the road and formerly the Shillingtons' residence.

Glenbank ca 1890

Glenbank House (ca 1875) used to be the Ewarts' family home.

It was situated on Ligoniel Road in Belfast.

Glenbank was purchased from Robert Thompson by Lavens Mathewson Ewart.

Ca 1920 the house and grounds were presented to Belfast Corporation for use as a public park.

All that now remains to remind us of its former existence are the gate pillars.

The Henderson (Belfast Newsletter/UTV) and Ewart families are related through marriage, Primrose Henderson's mother being Gundreda Ewart.

The Hendersons, whose residence was Norwood Tower (52 acres), would certainly have known the Ewarts, because the families all worshipped at St Mark's parish church.

The famous author, C S Lewis, was a second cousin of the Ewarts and often visited Glenmachan.

The 1st baronet contributed towards the building of St Mark's parish church, Dundela.

First published December, 2009.

Sunday, 29 September 2019

Limerick Palace

THE bishopric of Limerick was united in 1663 to those of Ardfert and Aghadoe, which had long been so incorporated as to form but one diocese.

Ardfert was established in the 5th century, and Limerick before the 13th.

The first prelate to reside in the palace was probably the Rt Rev Edward Synge, Lord Bishop of Limerick, 1661-78.

The last bishop to reside there was thought to be the Right Rev William Gore, Lord Bishop of Limerick, Ardfert and Aghadoe, 1772-84.

THE PALACE, Limerick, is a three-storey, five-bay house of ca 1740, of limestone.

The entrance is Venetian in style.

The palace remained an episcopal residence until 1784.

It underwent a major restoration in 1990.

It is adjacent to the Norman King John's Castle, and abuts a row of terraced alms houses, close to the grounds of Saint Munchin's Church further north along narrow Church Street.

An episcopal palace has been on this site since at least the 17th century.

It is thought that parts of the earlier structure were incorporated, largely at basement level, within the classical 18th-century structure.

The proportions of the window openings, which decrease with each storey, achieve a symmetrical classical façade.

It is also among the earliest examples of a formal classical composition within the city of Limerick.

The former episcopal palace is distinguished by limestone ashlar detailing, such as the door-case and eave cornice on the front and side elevations.

It is presently the headquarters of Limerick Civic Trust, which was responsible for the restoration of the building in 1990.

First published in September, 2015.

Saturday, 28 September 2019

Mossvale House


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

JOHN CHARLEY (c1659-1743), of Belfast, left a son,

RALPH CHARLEY (1674-1756), of Finaghy House, County Antrim, who wedded Elizabeth Hill, and had an only child,

JOHN CHARLEY (1711-93), of Finaghy House, who married Mary, daughter of John Ussher, and had issue,

Matthew, died unmarried;
JOHN, of whom hereafter;
Hill, died unmarried;
Jane, died unmarried.
The eldest surviving son,

JOHN CHARLEY (1744-1812), of Finaghy House, married, in 1783, Anne Jane, daughter of Richard Wolfenden, of Harmony Hill, County Down, and had issue,
John, of Finaghy House (1784-1844), dsp;
Matthew, of Finaghy House and Woodbourne;
WILLIAM, of whom we treat.
The third son,

WILLIAM CHARLEY (1790-1838), of Seymour Hill, Dunmurry, married, in 1817, Isabella, eldest daughter of William Hunter JP, of Dunmurry, and had issue,
JOHN, of Seymour Hill;
WILLIAM, succeeded his brother;
Edward, of Conway House;
Mary; Anne Jane; Eliza; Isabella; Emily.
The eldest son,

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

WILLIAM CHARLEY JP DL (1826-90), of Seymour Hill, who married, in 1856, Ellen Anna Matilda, daughter of Edward Johnson JP, of Ballymacash, near Lisburn, and granddaughter of Rev Philip Johnson JP DL, and had issue,

William, 1857-1904;
EDWARD JOHNSON, of Seymour Hill;
John George Stewart, 1863-86;
Thomas Henry FitzWilliam, 1866-85;
ARTHUR FREDERICK, of  whom hereafter;
Harold Richard;
Ellen Frances Isabella; Elizabeth Mary Florence;
Emily Constance Jane; Wilhelmina Maud Isabel.
The fifth son,

ARTHUR FREDERICK CHARLEY JP (1870-1944), of Mossvale House, Captain, Royal Irish Rifles, Chairman, J & W Charley and Company, married, in 1917, Clare, daughter of Patrick Burgess Fenn, though the marriage was without issue.

Mossvale House was adjacent to the Lagan Canal and originally belonged to the owners of the local mill.

It was acquired by the Charley family in 1820, when the mill and bleach works were purchased by William Charley (1790-1838) from Robert Johnstone.

Mossvale was encircled by trees and had stabling for ten horses.

Captain Arthur Frederick Charley lived here with his wife for several years after the Great War before moving into The Lodge at Dunmurry.

In 1936, Mossvale was rented out though sadly destroyed by arson.

The land and ruins remained in the family for another fifty years until it was sold in the 1980s.

A new house has been built on the site.

First published in March, 2011.

Friday, 27 September 2019

Annestown House


This family paternally descends from that of BURY, Earl of Charleville, extinct, and is now the male representative of that family.

JOHN BURY, nephew of WILLIAM BURY, the grandfather of the first Earl of Charleville of the second creation, assumed the surname of PALLISER, upon succeeding to the estates of his maternal grandmother.

JOHN PALLISER (1550-1623), of Newby Wiske, Yorkshire, married Anne, daughter of Michael Meeke, leaving issue,
THOMAS, his successor;
Anne; Jane; Elizabeth; Mary.
Mr Palliser was succeeded by his eldest son,

THOMAS PALLISER (1606-), of Newby Wiske, who wedded Joan, daughter of Richard Frankland, of Blobberhouse, Yorkshire, and had issue,
WILLIAM (Most Rev), of whom hereafter;
Admiral Sir Hugh Palliser Bt
Photo Credit: National Maritime Museum

Mr Palliser was still living in 1665.

His second son,

THE MOST REV WILLIAM PALLISER (1646-1726), Lord Archbishop of Cashel, espoused Elizabeth Hoye, and had issue,
WILLIAM, his successor;
Jane, mother of
His Grace was succeeded by his only son,

WILLIAM PALLISER (1695-1768), of Rathfarnham, who married, in 1728, Mary, daughter of Matthew Pennefather, of Cashel, Comptroller and Accountant-General for Ireland, and sister of Elizabeth, wife of Alexander, 5th Earl of Antrim, by whom he had no issue.

He was succeeded by his nephew,

JOHN PALLISER (formerly BURY), of Comeragh, County Waterford, who assumed the name of PALLISER, and wedded, in 1762, a daughter of Richard Taylor, of Cork.

He died in 1769, and was succeeded by his son,

WRAY PALLISER, of Derryluskan, who wedded Mary, daughter of the Ven Richard Chaloner, Archdeacon of Cashel, and was father of

JOHN PALLISER (1760-1833), of Derryluskan, who married, in 1784, Grace, eldest daughter of William Barton, of Grove, County Tipperary, and had issue,
WRAY, father of Sir W Palliser CB & John Palliser CMG;
Richard Bury;
Elizabeth; Margaret; Grace; Anna.
Mr Palliser's second son,

THE REV JOHN BURY PALLISER (1791-1864), of Annestown, Rector of Clonmel, wedded, in 1830, Julia, daughter of Captain John Howe, East India Company, and had issue,
John Richard.
The elder son,

CAPTAIN WRAY BURY PALLISER JP DL (1831-1906), of Annestown, espoused, in 1861, Maria Victoria Josephine, youngest daughter of Joseph Gubbins, of County Limerick, and had issue,
Alice Grace (1863-78).


MRS MARY JANE SYBIL GALLOWAY (1874-1940), daughter of Major Sir William Palliser CB, married, in 1908, Captain Harold Bessemer Galloway, of Blervie, Morayshire, and had issue,
Sybil Evelyn, born 1909.

ANNESTOWN HOUSE, Annestown, County Waterford, has been a seat of the Palliser family and their descendants since about 1830.

This is a rambling, three-storey house, at right-angles to the street in the village of Annestown.

It is actually two houses joined together. The main front faces the sea, though the gable end is on the street.

The rooms have low ceilings, though they are commodious.

The long drawing-room is divided by an arch with plain Victorian plasterwork; while a large library is approached along a passage.

Annestown House was owned at the beginning of the 19th century by Henry St George Cole; bought about 1830 by the Pallisers, from whom it was inherited by the Galloways.

It remained with the Galloway family until 2008.

COMERAGH HOUSE (above) was another seat of the Pallisers; as was Blervie, Morayshire.

First published in June, 2013.

1st Earl of Ardglass


THOMAS CROMWELLBaron Cromwell, of Wimbledon, thus created, in 1536, by HENRY VIII.

Being descended from the Bourchiers, he was also created EARL OF ESSEX, Knight of the Garter, and His Majesty's Vice-Regent.

After he had served his royal master faithfully, and to the utmost, the King caused him to be beheaded, to satisfy Bishop Gardiner and the Duke of Norfolk.

But in the same year, 1540, the attainder being reversed,

GREGORY CROMWELL (c1514-51), the son of Thomas, was created BARON CROMWELL, of Oakham, Rutland.

He married Elizabeth, daughter of Sir John Seymour, and sister of Edward, Duke of Somerset, and widow of Sir Anthony Oughtred, and had issue,
HENRY, his successor;
Catherine; Frances.
His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,

HENRY, 2nd Baron (1538-92), summoned to Parliament in the reign of ELIZABETH I, who wedded the Lady Mary Paulet, daughter of John, Marquess of Winchester, and had issue,
EDWARD, his successor;
Gregory (Sir);
His lordship was succeeded by his elder son,

EDWARD, 3rd Baron (1559-1607), who espoused firstly, ca 1580, Elizabeth, daughter of William Upton, of Puslinch, Devon, and had issue, an only daughter, ELIZABETH.

He wedded secondly, ca 1593, Frances, daughter of William Rugge, of Felmingham, Norfolk, and had further issue,
THOMAS, his successor;
Frances; Anne.
His lordship was with the Earl of Essex in his expedition at sea against the Spaniards, and joined in the insurrection three years afterwards, which cost Lord Essex his head.

The 3rd Baron received, however, an especial pardon in 1601. 
Lord Cromwell, having alienated his estates in England by sale, purchased the barony of Lecale in County Down from Charles Blount, 8th Baron Mountjoy, or "made an exchange thereof".
His lordship settled at Lecale, 1605, after creditors had seized his Leicestershire manors. 
He was granted lands which had been possessed by a local Irish chieftain, Phelim McCartan, on condition that he educated and provided for McCartan's son in his household.
The King also appointed him Governor of Lecale, with the power to exercise martial law.
He was succeeded by his only son,

THOMAS, 4th Baron (1594-1653), who married Elizabeth, daughter and heiress of Robert Meverell, of Throwleigh, Staffordshire, and had issue,
WINGFIELD, his heir;
VERE ESSEX, 4th Earl;
His lordship was created by CHARLES I, in 1624, Viscount Lecale; and advanced to the dignity of an earldom, in 1645, as EARL OF ARDGLASS.
Lord Ardglass remained firmly attached to the interests of the King during the civil wars, notwithstanding his friendship with Robert Devereux, 3rd Earl of Essex

Ardglass was an important town during the middle ages, which would explain Cromwell's choice of title.

The 1st Earl was commander of the Regiment of Horse in Ireland for CHARLES I during the Civil War; and subsequently made his peace with Parliament, paying £460 for his "delinquency".
1st Earl of Ardglass

The 1st Earl married Elizabeth, daughter and heiress of Robert Meverell, of Throwleigh, Staffordshire, and had issue,
WINGFIELD, his heir;
VERE ESSEX, 4th Earl;
His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son, 

WINGFIELD, 2nd Earl (1622-68), who wedded Mary, daughter of Sir William Russell, 1st Baronet, and had issue, an only child,

THOMAS, 3rd Earl (1653-82), who married Honoria, daughter of the Most Rev Dr Michael Boyle, Lord Archbishop of Dublin and Lord Chancellor of Ireland; but dying childless, 1682, the honours reverted to his uncle,

VERE ESSEX, 4th Earl (1623-87), PC, second son of the 1st Earl, who espoused, in 1672, Catherine, daughter of James Hamilton, of Newcastle, County Down.

His lordship died without male issue, when the titles expired except the barony of CROMWELL, originating in the writ of 1539, which devolved upon his daughter,

THE LADY ELIZABETH CROMWELL (1672-1709), as BARONESS CROMWELL, in which rank her ladyship assisted at the funeral of MARY II, and at the coronation of QUEEN ANNE.

Her ladyship wedded the Rt Hon Edward Southwell MP, Principal Secretary of State for Ireland, and had issue, two sons and a daughter, who all died sine prole; and another son, Edward, who, marrying the Hon Katherine Watson, daughter of Edward, Viscount Sondes, and sole heiress of her brothers, Lewis and Thomas, Earls of Rockingham, left a son,

EDWARD SOUTHWELL, 20TH BARON DE CLIFFORD, who, in right of his mother, succeeded to the barony of DE CLIFFORD.

Her ladyship died in 1709, and the barony of CROMWELL is now supposed to be vested in Lord de Clifford.
Dundrum Castle was held by the 1st Earl between 1605-36.
The Earls of Ardglass were landlords of most of the barony of Lecale.

The lands of Lecale were held, prior to the Reformation, either by the great religious corporations in Downpatrick or by the descendants of the early English colonists.

The Church lands, having become vested in the Crown, were leased to the Earl of Kildare and, after the expiration of that lease, came into the possession of the Cromwells, Earls of Ardglass.

They still form the Downpatrick estate, except large portions of them that have been sold or leased by the Cromwells or their descendants.

The estates held by the descendants of the early English colonists were almost all confiscated under the Act of Settlement, after the termination of the civil wars of 1641.

The 3rd Baron Cromwell and the 4th Earl of Ardglass are both interred at Down Cathedral, Downpatrick, County Down. 

First published in July, 2010.   Ardglass arms courtesy of European Heraldry.

Thursday, 26 September 2019

6th Marquess of Londonderry


Staunchly Conservative and Unionist, of noble birth and great wealth, the 6th Marquess of Londonderry was an obvious choice as Viceroy for the Prime Minister, Lord Salisbury. 

The office of Viceroy - the very personification of the Sovereign - brought with it the highest position in Irish society.

The viceregal emolument in 1887 was £12,000 per annum (£120,000 in today's money). 

The Lord Lieutenant naturally felt obliged to entertain in the form of banquets, balls, receptions and other activities.

The young Lord Londonderry, aged 34,  accepted the offer promptly, though he stipulated that he would leave office after the customary three years owing to family and business commitments.

Lord Londonderry's portrait (top) can be viewed in the State Dining-room of Dublin Castle, dressed in his uniform as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland.

It has been said that most Viceroys preferred to live at Viceregal Lodge in Phoenix Park, County Dublin, rather than at the Castle in central Dublin.

In the portrait he wears the sky-blue mantle of the Most Illustrious Order of St Patrick, as its Grand Master. 

The Garter sash is worn, as are the breast stars of the Garter and St Patrick.

Lord Londonderry was MP for County Down between 1878-84. On 3 August 1885 his name was legally changed to Charles Stewart Vane-Tempest-Stewart by Royal Licence.
  • Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, 1886-89;
  • Knight Companion, Order of the Garter, 1888;
  • One of Her Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council, 1892;
  • Deputy Lieutenant, County Durham;
  • Deputy Lieutenant, Montgomeryshire;
  • Justice of the Peace, County Durham;
  • Postmaster-General, 1900-02;
  • Knight Grand Cross, Royal Victorian Order, 1903;
  • Lord President of the Council, 1903-05;
  • Mayor of Durham, 1910.
6th Marquess at Coronation of EDWARD VII

Lord Londonderry's County Down seat was Mount Stewart, near Newtownards, County Down.

His town residence was Londonderry House, Park Lane.

He died at his County Durham seat, Wynyard Park, in 1915.

First published in September, 2011.

1st Baron Headley


The line of Wynns is descended from a cadet of Gwydir, who, in consequence of some family misunderstanding, left Wales in the 16th century, and settled in London.

Sir William Segar (Garter King of Arms in the reigns of ELIZABETH I and JAMES I) acknowledged this to be the true descent, by exemplifying to George Wynne, the ancestor of Lord Headley's family, the armorial ensigns of the Wynnes of Gwydir.

GEORGE WYNN (to whom, being draper to ELIZABETH I, a patent of arms was granted in 1604) is the first member of the English branch of whom we find any particular mention.

This George Wynn was born about 1560, and died in 1610.

He married Margaret Green, of London, and had issue,

EDMUND WINN (1583-c1645), of Thornton Curtis, in Lincolnshire, who wedded Mary, daughter of Rowland Berkeley, of the city of Worcester, and sister of Sir Robert Berkeley, Knight, one of the judges of the Court of King's Bench, and had issue,
GEORGE, his heir;
Katherine; Margaret; Mary; Joyce; Annie.
The eldest son,

GEORGE WINN (c1607-67), High Sheriff of Lincolnshire, 1657, proved himself to be a steady friend to the monarchy and to his country during the civil contests which cast a cloud over the last days of the unfortunate CHARLES I, for there is extent in his family a receipt of the date of the very year in which His Majesty suffered, signed by a deputed person on behalf of the exiled prince, his son, from which it appears that George Winn contributed, with his brother Rowland, the sum of 2,000 guilders (a sum, perhaps, in those days not inconsiderable, and certainly not advanced without serious personal risk) towards the support of what might have been considered a hopeless cause.

In the December following the Restoration, the title of Baronet was conferred by CHARLES II on his faithful subject, as SIR GEORGE WINN, of Nostell, Yorkshire.

Sir George was married thrice: firstly, to Rachel, daughter of John Turner, by whom he had no issue; secondly, to Elizabeth, daughter of Robert Jeffreys, alderman of London, by whom he had,
EDMUND, his successor;
GEORGE, born in 1645, whose grandson was created 1st BARON HEADLEY;
Sir George espoused thirdly, Anne, daughter of Sir William Pelham, Knight, but by her he had no issue.

At his decease, in 1667, his eldest son, EDMUND, succeeded to the baronetcy, which, in 1805, devolved upon his great-grandson, Sir Edmund Mark Winn, of Acton, Yorkshire, the 7th Baronet, at whose decease, in 1833, it fell to his cousin, the second Baron Headley, Sir George, the 1st Baronet's second son,

GEORGE WINN, of South Ferriby, in Lincolnshire, who married Sarah, daughter of Charles Pelham (ancestor of the Earl of Yarborough), and had issue,

PELHAM WINN, who wedded Elizabeth, daughter of the Rev Gilbert Wighton, by Elizabeth Allanson and Charles Allanson, of Syon, Middlesex, by whom he had an only son,

GEORGE ALLANSON-WINN (1725-98), of whom it is the pride of his family to speak as an instance of rare success and celebrity under no common difficulties.

He succeeded in 1763 to the estates of his cousin, Mark Winn, of Little Warley, Essex, and in 1775 to those of his cousin, Charles Allanson, of Brabham Biggin, Yorkshire, who was the only son of the above-named William Allanson, and died leaving no issue.

Mr Winn was created a Baronet in 1776, owing to the eminence and talents of his exertions as a Baron of the Exchequer in Scotland, and in the same year he obtained licence and authority to assume the name and armorial bearing of ALLANSON.

In 1797, Sir George was elevated to the peerage, in the dignity of BARON HEADLEY, Baron Allanson and Winn, of Aghadoe, County Kerry.

His lordship married firstly, in 1765, Anne, fourth daughter of Sir Rowland Winn Bt, of Nostell, Yorkshire (son of Sir Rowland, the son of Sir Edmund, eldest son of Sir George, 1st Baronet), by whom he had issue, an only daughter, Georgiana Anne (1769-82).

His lady died during the childbirth of a son in 1774.

His lordship wedded secondly, in 1783, Jane, eldest daughter and heiress of Arthur Blennerhassett, of Ballyseedy, County Kerry, in which county the Blennerhassetts (a long-settled and well-known family in Cumberland), formed a distinguished house for many generations, by whom he had further issue,
CHARLES, his successor;
George Mark Arthur Way, grandfather of the 5th Baron;
Jane Elizabeth; Maria.
His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,

CHARLES, 2nd Baron (1784-1840), who inherited the old family baronetcy in 1833, and espoused, in 1826, Miss Anne Matthews, and dsp 1840, when the family honours devolved upon his nephew,

CHARLES, 3rd Baron (1810-77), DL, who wedded, in 1841, Maria Margaret, eldest daughter of Major d'Arley, and had issue,
Rowland William (died in infancy, 1842);
CHARLES MARK, his successor;
Laura Jane; Millicent Julia; Marion Sybil.
His lordship was succeeded by his eldest surviving son,

CHARLES MARK, 4th Baron (1845-1913), JP DL, Captain, Honourable Artillery Company, who espoused, in 1867, Elizabeth, daughter of the Rev John Blennerhassett, and had issue, an only child and daughter, AVIS MILLICENT BLENNERHASSETT ALLINSON-WINN.

Following the decease of the 4th Baron without male issue, in 1913, the honours reverted to his cousin,

ROWLAND, 5th Baron (1855-1935), also known as Shaikh Rahmatullah al-Farooq.

The titles expired in 1994, following the decease of the 5th Baron's younger son Charles Rowland, 7th and last Baron.

AGHADOE HOUSE, Killarney, County Kerry, was built in 1828, reputedly at a cost of £12,000 (almost £1.3 million in today's money).

Despite this fact, the mansion is largely victorian and Italianate in style.

It is built with red sandstone ashlar and limestone facings, with an irregular two-storey main block, and a three-storey office wing.

The limestone porch has three arches and a balustrade.

The house was burnt in 1922, though later re-built, when the eaves were designed to overhang considerably more than originally.

Aghadoe House has been a youth hostel for many years.


GLENBEIGH TOWERS, Glenbeigh, County Kerry, was built between 1867-71 for the Hon Rowland Winn.

The house, now ruinous, is Victorian-Medieval in character, with particularly solid stonework.

It comprised a vast square keep of three storeys, a gabled attic; a walled entrance court or bawn on one side, approached through a gateway defended by a corner bastion.

Glenbeigh was inhabited by Rowland Winn's son, also called Rowland, who became the 5th Lord Headley.

It was burnt in 1922, and only a corner of the ruin is now standing.

Wednesday, 25 September 2019

The Dixon Baronets


THOMAS DIXON (1770-1849), of Bonamargy, near Ballycastle, County Antrim, married, in 1804, Mary McNeill, and had an only son,

THOMAS DIXON (1805-68), of Larne, County Antrim, a timber merchant and ship-owner, who wedded, in 1834, Sarah, daughter of Daniel McCambridge, and had issue,
Francis McCambridge (c1836-66);
Thomas S;
DANIEL, of whom hereafter;
Alexander McCambridge;
Mary McNeill; Sarah.
Mr Dixon's third son,

THE RT HON DANIEL DIXON JP DL (1844-1907), Lord Mayor of Belfast, 1893, 1901-3, 1905-6, High Sheriff of County Antrim, 1896, MP for Belfast North, 1905-7, Privy Counsellor, espoused firstly, in 1867, Eliza, daughter of James Agnew, and had issue,
THOMAS JAMES, his heir.
He married secondly, in 1870, Annie, daughter of James Shaw, and had issue,
Evelyn Annie; Kate; Edith Sarah; Louise; Beatrice.
Photo Credit: Belfast Harbour Commissioners

Mr Dixon was created a baronet in 1903, designated of Ballymenock, County Antrim.

He was succeeded by his eldest son,

THE RT HON  SIR THOMAS JAMES DIXON (1868-1950), 2nd Baronet, JP, of Graymount and Drumadarragh, who wedded, in 1906, Edith Stewart, daughter of Stewart Clark, though the marriage was without issue.

Sir Thomas, High Sheriff of County Antrim, 1912, County Down, 1913, Lord-Lieutenant of Belfast, 1924-50, Privy Counsellor, was succeeded by his brother,

THE RT HON SIR HERBERT DIXON, 3rd Baronet (1880-1950), OBE PC, High Sheriff of County Kildare, 1916, who espoused, in 1905, Emily Ina Florence, daughter of John George Barry, 5th Baron Clanmorris, and had issue,
Daphne Maude; Anne Lavinia; Angela Ierne Evelyn; Patricia Clare.
Sir Herbert was elevated to the peerage, in 1939, in the dignity of BARON GLENTORAN, of Ballyalloly, County Down.

His lordship was succeeded by his only son,

DANIEL STEWART THOMAS BINGHAM (1912-95), 2nd Baron and 4th Baronet, KBE, who wedded, in 1933, the Lady Diana Mary Wellesley, daughter of Henry Arthur Mornington, 3rd Earl Cowley, and had issue,
Peter Herbert;
Clare Rosalind.
His lordship was succeeded by his elder son,

THOMAS ROBIN VALERIAN, 3rd Baron and 5th Baronet (1935-).

First published in August, 2010.

Tuesday, 24 September 2019

Bishopscourt House



THOMAS SCOTT, a captain in the army of WILLIAM III, fell in the field, charging the enemy at the head of his troops.

He wedded Margaret, daughter and heir of Henry Ormsby, of Tubbervady, County Roscommon, and was father of

MICHAEL SCOTT, who married Miss Purcell, of the ancient family of Purcell, titular Barons of Loughmoe, and had issue, Thomas, of Mohubber, deceased; and

JOHN SCOTT (1739-98), MP for Mullingar, 1769-83, Portarlington, 1783-4, who, being bred to the bar, arrived at the high legal offices of Solicitor-General, Attorney-General, and Prime Sergeant-at-Law of Ireland, 1774-83.

In 1784, he was appointed Lord Chief Justice of the Court of King's Bench; and in the same year Mr Scott was elevated to the peerage, in the dignity of Baron Earlsfort, of Lisson Earl, County Tipperary.

His lordship was advanced to a viscountcy, in 1789, as Viscount Clonmell; and further advanced to the dignity of an earldom, in 1793, as EARL OF CLONMELL.

He married firstly, in 1768, Catharine Anna Maria, daughter of Thomas Mathew, of Thomastown Castle, County Tipperary, and sister of the 1st Earl of Landaff, by whom he had an only son, who died in infancy.

His lordship wedded secondly, in 1779, Margaret, only daughter and heir of Patrick Lawless, of Dublin (by Mary, sister of 1st Lord Cloncurry), and had issue,
THOMAS, his successor;
Charlotte, m 3rd Earl Beauchamp.
He was succeeded by his only son,

THOMAS, 2nd Earl (1783-1838), who espoused, in 1805, Henrietta Greville, second daughter of George, 2nd Earl of Warwick, and had issue,
JOHN HENRY, his successor;
Charles Grantham;
Harriett; Louisa Augusta; Charlotte Rachael; Caroline Sophia;
Frances Mary; Sophia Louisa; Augusta Anne; Georgiana Gertrude.
His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,

JOHN HENRY, 3rd Earl (1817-66), of Lisson Earl, County Tipperary, who married, in 1838, Anne, daughter of Ulysses, 2nd Baron Downes of Aghanville, and had issue,

JOHN HENRY REGINALD, 4th Earl (1839-91), of Birt House, Naas, County Kildare, who died unmarried, when the family honours devolved upon his brother,

THOMAS CHARLES, 5th Earl (1840-96), who married, in 1875, Agnes Arabella, daughter of Robert Godfrey Day.

His lordship died without issue at Bishop's Court, County Kildare, from typhoid fever, and was succeeded by his first cousin,

BEAUCHAMP HENRY JOHN, 6th Earl (1847-98), eldest son of Colonel the Hon Charles Grantham Scott, second son of the 2nd Earl; on whose decease the titles passed to his son,

RUPERT CHARLES, 7th Earl (1877-1928), who died without male issue, when the titles reverted to his uncle,

DUDLEY ALEXANDER CHARLES, 8th Earl (1853-1935), whose marriage was without issue.

On his death, at Tunbridge Wells, Kent, the titles became extinct.

BISHOPSCOURT, Straffan, County Kildare, is a large classical house built ca 1780-90 for the Rt Hon John Ponsonby, Speaker of the Irish House of Commons.

It has a four-bay entrance front with a pedimented portico of four huge Ionic columns.

The outer bays have pedimented ground-floor windows and circular plaques instead of windows in the upper storey.

The side elevation has a recessed centre and three-bay projection at either side, joined by a veranda of slender columns with an iron balcony.

There is a curved bow on either side of the House; and an imperial staircase.

In 1838, Bishopscourt was sold by Frederick Ponsonby to John, 3rd Earl of Clonmell.

In 1914, the house was sold on to Edward Kennedy from Baronrath, at the time the most famous breeder of racehorses in Ireland.
Kennedy’s stallion The Tetrarch, standing at Bishopscourt, is confirmed as the most successful sire in the world in 1919.
In 1938, Bishopscourt passed to Edward’s daughter Patricia (Tiggie) Kennedy and her husband, Dermot McGillycuddy, heir to Senator McGillycuddy of the Reeks, an ancient clan chiefdom from County Kerry.
Edward Kennedy's son, Major D M (John) Kennedy, won a Military Cross at Anzio whilst serving with 1st Battalion Irish Guards and was later killed at Terporten Castle in Germany in February 1945.
Bishopscourt House is now the residence of the Farrell family.

Former seat ~ Eathorpe Hall, Warwickshire.
Former town residence ~ 41 Upper Brook Street, London.

First published in June, 2013.   Clonmell arms courtesy of European Heraldry.

Ampertaine House

This family, said to be scions of the Clarkes of Salford Hall, Salford Priors, Warwickshire,  settled in County Londonderry, 1690.

JOHN CLARK (1665-1707), of Maghera, County Londonderry, married, about 1695, Jane White, of Belfast, and had issue,
JACKSON, of whom presently;
John (1697-1721).
Mr Clark was succeeded by his elder son,

JACKSON CLARK (1695-1754), of Maghera, who wedded, in 1720, and had issue,
John, adopted by his uncle John;
ALEXANDER, of whom presently;
Arthur, settled in America;
William, also in America;
Sarah, m Dr J Ferguson, of Belfast;
a daughter; Jane; Margaret.
The eldest surviving son,

ALEXANDER CLARK (1733-1806), espoused, in 1757, Elizabeth, daughter of William Stevenson, of Knockan, and had issue,
Alexander, his heir;
JACKSON, of whom presently;
The second son,

JACKSON CLARK (1760-88), married, in 1785, Jane, daughter of General Patterson, of Maghera, County Londonderry, and was father of

ALEXANDER CLARK (1785-1871), of Ampertaine House, Upperlands, County Londonderry, who wedded, in 1814, Sarah, third daughter of Sir Simon Newport, of Waterford, and had issue,
Jackson (Dr), died unmarried;
WILLIAM, of whom hereafter;
John Alexander;
Henry Bolton;
Charles Francis;
Mr Clark was succeeded by his eldest son,

WILLIAM CLARK (1816-1904), of Ampertaine House, who married, in 1853, Marianne Elizabeth Paul, daughter of Captain Simon Newport JP DL, and had issue,
William Newport (1854-1915), emigrated to New Zealand;
ALEXANDER WALLIS, of whom we treat;
George Wallis Newport (Rev);
John Henry;
Simon Newport;
Henry Jackson;
Annie Penelope; Sarah Louise Jane; Jane Frances.
Mr Clark was succeeded by his second son,

ALEXANDER WALLIS CLARK JP DL (1857-1937), of Ampertaine House, High Sheriff of County Londonderry, 1922, Chairman, William Clark & Sons, 1913-37, who wedded, in 1893, Frances Lucinda Caroline, eldest daughter of William Maxwell Carpendale, of Falkland, Dungannon, County Tyrone, and had issue,
George Wallis Newport;
Ivan Henry;
Perceval Maxwell Carpendale;
Katherine Marianne Violet.
Mr Clark was succeeded by his eldest son,

ALEXANDER WILLIAM MAXWELL CLARK JP (1898-1973), of Ampertaine House; High Sheriff of County Londonderry, 1936, Director, William Clark & Sons, who married, in 1924, Dorothy Noelle, younger daughter of J R Lopdell JP, and had issue,
Robert Gordon, b 1927;
Denis Knox, b 1932.
Mr Clark was succeeded by his eldest son,

AUBREY ALEXANDER MAXWELL CLARK (1925-2002), of Ampertaine House and Bayhead, Portballintrae, who wedded, in 1948, Lillian Eleanor Mary, daughter of Colonel William Anderson Swales, and had issue,
Jane Dorothy Elizabeth; April Jillian; Sarah Primrose.

AMPERTAINE HOUSE, Upperlands, County Londonderry, is the most notable of a number of country houses in the vicinity built by various members of the Clark family.

The townland of Upperlands comprised 568 acres.

This family's linen mills gave rise to the nearby "linen village" of Upperlands, based in the courtyard of one of these houses.

Ampertaine, a plain, late-Georgian house, was built some time after 1821 by Alexander clark.

It comprises two storeys over a high basement; a five-bay front; shallow projecting porch, with a fanlighted doorway set in an arched recess.

The roof is eaved, on a a bracket cornice.

The front was prolonged by a two storey, three-bay wing, set back, added in 1915.

At the other end there was a Victorian conservatory on a high plinth.

Ampertaine has a modest parkland with mature shelter belts enclosing the house.

A "small thatched cottage" known as Upperlands formerly occupied the site of the present house, known variously as Ampertaine, Amptertain or Amportaine.

The house lawns merge into gardens, which had become neglected and overgrown until the 1990s, when clearance began to expose a late Victorian ornamental garden with ponds, rockeries and iron bowers to the east and south-east of the house.

The walled kitchen garden, east of the house, can be viewed through decorative iron railings on top of the west wall.
It is laid out in conventional manner with cross and perimeter paths and contains a summer house, sunken garden, rose garden, the site of a lean-to glasshouse range with stove and old apple trees.
On the north-east front of the house lie the foundations of a high plinth that once supported a circular Victorian conservatory.

The park has a gate lodge of ca 1870, which replaced two earlier lodges; it lies across the road from the main entrance.

First published in September, 2013.

Monday, 23 September 2019

The Harland Baronetcy


EDWARD JAMES HARLAND (1831-95), son of Dr William Harland and his wife Anne, was born at Newborough, Scarborough, North Yorkshire.
Dr William Harland, MD (1787-1866), was thrice Mayor of Scarborough and a successful physician, with his own medicinal baths at the bottom of Vernon Place in the town. His mother, Anne Pierson, was a talented artist who helped her husband with his engineering drawings.
In 1846, aged 15,  he took an apprenticeship at the engineering works of Robert Stephenson and CompanyNewcastle-upon-Tyne.

Afterwards he was employed in Glasgow and again in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, before moving to Belfast in 1854 to manage Robert Hickson's shipyard at Queen's Island.

Four years later Mr Harland bought the yard and renamed the business Edward James Harland & Company.

In 1861, he formed a business partnership with Gustav Wilhelm Wolff, his former personal assistant, creating Harland and Wolff.

Later, Harland recruited William James Pirrie (afterwards 1st Viscount Pirrie) as another partner.

Messrs Harland, Wolff and Pirrie ran a successful business, receiving regular orders from the White Star Line, before Harland's retirement in 1889, leaving Wolff and Pirrie to manage the shipyard.

Sir Edward James Harland Bt, by Frank Holl (1845–1888)

Harland also served as a Belfast Harbour Commissioner.

In 1885, he was granted a knighthood and a baronetcy:
LONDON GAZETTE, Friday, July 24, 1885:-


THE QUEEN has been pleased to direct Letters Patent to be passed under the Great Seal granting the dignity of a Baronet of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland unto Edward James Harland, of Ormiston, in the parish of Holywood, in the county of Down, and of Brompton, in the North Riding of the county of York, Esq., mayor of the borough of Belfast.
Sir Edward served the office of Mayor of Belfast, 1885-86.

The Harlands' Belfast residence was for a period Ormiston House.

He later moved to London and served as North Belfast MP until his death on Christmas Eve, 1895, at his Irish home, Glenfarne Hall in County Leitrim.

Harland left no heir to his baronetcy, which expired on his death in 1895.

There is a statue of Sir Edward in the grounds of Belfast City Hall.

First published in September, 2010.