Thursday, 29 October 2009

Simmy Island Boathouse

Whilst munching away at our packed lunches yesterday, one topic which "came up" related to Simmy Island on Strangford Lough.

Simmy Island is almost a peninsula. It is privately owned by one of Northern Ireland's most prominent hoteliers. It is exceptionally picturesque, overlooking the National Trust's Island Taggart several hundred yards off-shore.

The Boathouse on the island can be clearly seen from Island Taggart. Seemingly, about two years ago, this little building was converted into a dwelling with a septic tank; and the jetty was also extended. Planning permission was retrospectively applied for.

The matter has become controversial, because a local councillor wants the application to be examined; and the planning department has said that it will pursue the matter.

I am curious to know if there have been any further developments since then: Does anyone know about this?

13 comments :

Peregrine's Bird Blog said...

I hope the hotelier ;-) is asked to take it down. Have you seen the horrendous mausoleum he has built himself at Downpatrick Cathedral. A real case of fur coat and no nickers in my view.

I am sure he will get away with it. I remember going to parties in my teens on the island when it was owned by Mackies.

Anonymous said...

Yes, as you say, the lodge is owned by our ex-BHS colleague from the catering trade (now also on NI's tourist board). Peregrine is also correct in saying that it used to be owned by the Mackies (like quite alot along the shores of Strangford). I understand it used to be a shooting lodge for the Mackies.
J

Timothy Belmont said...

Absolutely fascinating. Mind you, it's an utterly idyllic spot, isn't it?

Simmy must have been a magical place for boyhood parties. .was the house always there?

I think there is still a Mackie connection with Pawle Island, isn't there? Re the Hamiltons...

Timothy Belmont said...

No, I had no idea about the mausoleum at the Cathedral! Must go and view it. Such largesse and beneficence...

Anonymous said...

Yes, Pawle Island is part of the (extended) Mackies family, owned by the folks at Ringdufferin. I think that quite a bit of Mahee island used to be owned by the Mackies too (maybe still is). There was plenty of money to be in linen a while ago!
J

Peregrine's Bird Blog said...

Pawle Island and Hamiltons yes(She is a mackie) They seem to be doing well with their mash business!!!

There is connection with mahee island and Paddy and Julie mackie.

Anonymous said...

Whilst trawling through Google for stories about Mahee I came across this:
http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/sunday-life/stephen-nolans-fantasy-island-14312993.html

Does anyone know if this redevelopment is happening? If the article is talking about the house I'm thinking of, it would be a disgrace!
J

Timothy Belmont said...

J,

That is interesting. News to me. And it's on Mahee Island.

Anonymous said...

The hotelier had his retrospective permission granted.
Surprise surprise.
Feel Mr Hastings unlikely to be happy about any neighbouring development activity.Seems there are two sets of rules.

Timothy Belmont said...

The Planning Dept here is hopeless anyway - utterly spineless!

Anonymous said...

I think the mausoleum is a beautiful structure and an amazing place for such a respected member of society to rest. I was out fishing my son last week and I thought the boat house was very tasteful.

Irishlass said...

To answer Timothy Belmont's question, Simmy Island has had a house on it since at least the beginning of the 19th century. My great great grandfather, Hamilton Wallace, was born there in 1812, to Thomas Wallace and Agnes Carroll. The island was rented by the Wallace family until 1863, when Agnes died, and used for farming and as a home.
Hamilton migrated to the USA in 1838.

Andy Cherry said...

Irishlass correct. My realitive was Jane Wallace from simmy island. Her daughter also went to America and my great great grandad could have worked for Hamiltons sons. I will have to check my old letters.