Monday, 27 May 2019

Lane-Fox Estate


The family of FOX, which is of ancient descent, ranked amongst the most influential and opulent in the north of England.

WILLIAM FOX, living in the reign of EDWARD IV, acquired by marriage with Sybil, daughter of John de Grete, the lands of Grete, Yardley, Worcestershire.

He was succeeded by his son,

JOHN FOX, of Grete, living in 1523, father, by Alice his wife, of

JOHN FOX, of Grete, who married and was father of

THOMAS FOX, of Grete, who, by his wife, had issue,
Richard, of Mosely;
Thomas, of Yardley;
John, of King's Norton;
Henry, of Yardley;
EDMUND, of whom we treat;
Joan; Dorothy.
The youngest son,

EDMUND FOX, of Birmingham, wedded Elizabeth, daughter and heiress of Hugh Grossbrooke, and had issue,
Richard, died without issue;
JOSEPH, of whom hereafter;
Thomas, of the Inner Temple;
Timothy, in holy orders.
The third son,  

JOSEPH FOX, born in 1617, held a major's commission in the army serving in Ireland.

He married Thomasine, widow of Sir Henry Pierce Bt and daughter of Henry, 2nd Lord Blayney, by Jane his wife, daughter of Gerald, Viscount Drogheda, by whom he had issue, with four daughters, a son and successor,

HENRY FOX, who espoused firstly, Jane, daughter of Robert Oliver, of Clonodfoy, and had several sons, who all died young.

He married secondly, in 1691, THE HON FRANCES LANE, daughter of Sir George Lane, of Tulsk, County Roscommon (Secretary of State in Ireland, created Viscount Lanesborough), and sister and heiress of James, Viscount Lanesborough, who died in 1724, by whom he had issue,
Henry, died young;
GEORGE, heir to his father;
Denny Henrietta; Jane; Frances; Anne.
Mr Fox was succeeded by his eldest son,

GEORGE FOX (c1697-1773), MP for the City of York, who inherited by will the great estates of Lord Lanesborough, and assumed, by act of parliament, in 1750, in accordance with the testator's injunction, the additional surname and arms of LANE.

He wedded, in 1731, Harriet, daughter and sole heiress of the Rt Hon Robert Benson, Lord Bingley; and was created, on the extinction of his father-in-law's peerage, 1762, BARON BINGLEY (second creation), of Bingley, Yorkshire.

By this lady, with whom he acquired £100,000 (ca £21.6 million today), and £7,000 a year, he had an only son, 

THE HON ROBERT FOX-LANE (1732-68), who wedded, in 1761, the Lady Brigit Henley, eldest daughter of Robert, Earl of Northington, Lord Chancellor of England; but predeceased his father, without issue, in 1768.

His lordship, having survived his only child, devised his great estates in England and Ireland to his nephew,

JAMES FOX-LANE (1756-1821), of Bramham Park, Yorkshire, MP for Horsham, who wedded, in 1789, Mercia Lucy, youngest daughter of George Pitt, 1st Baron Rivers, and had issue,
GEORGE, his heir;
William Pitt;
Thomas Lascelles;
Marcia Bridget.
Mr Fox Lane left his very extensive estates strictly entailed upon his eldest son,  

GEORGE LANE-FOX (1793-1848), of Bramham Park, MP for Beverley, who wedded, in 1814, Georgiana Henrietta, daughter of Edward Percy Buckley, of Minestead Lodge, Hampshire, and had issue,
GEORGE, his heir;
Frederica Elizabeth.
Mr Lane-Fox was succeeded by his only son,

GEORGE LANE-FOX (1816-96), of Bramham Park, High Sheriff of County Leitrim, 1846, who wedded, in 1837, Georgiana Henrietta, daughter of Edward Percy Buckley, by the Lady Georgiana West, his wife, daughter of John, Earl De La Warr, and had issue,
George Sackville Frederick (1838-1918);
James Thomas Richard;
Kathleen Mary; Caroline Alexina.
The younger son,

JAMES THOMAS RICHARD LANE-FOX (1841-1906), was father of

LIEUTENANT-COLONEL THE RT HON GEORGE RICHARD LANE-FOX (1870-1947), who married, in 1903, Agnes, daughter of 2nd Viscount Halifax.

The combination of her wealth, his determination and the compulsory purchase of the family's Irish estates, allowed George to honour a promise he had made to his grandfather, The Squire, to rebuild the House.  The family reoccupied in 1907.

George was wounded in the First World War, serving with the Yorkshire Hussars, a regiment he later commanded.  He had been elected to Parliament in 1906 and held several government posts including Secretary of State for Mines in 1923.

In 1933, he was created BARON BINGLEY (third creation); however, he had four daughters and, on his death, the title again became extinct.

THE FAMILY continues to live at their ancestral home, Bramham Park, Wetherby, West Yorkshire, where their estate comprised 15,000 acres.

The Lane-Foxes had estates in Yorkshire, Dorset, and The Court, near Lanesborough, in Ireland.

Their London residence was at 12 Albemarle Street.


IN 1666, GEORGE LANE (1620-83) was granted lands in counties Dublin, Meath, Kilkenny, Longford, Waterford and Cork.

This George was the son of Richard Lane, of Tulsk, County Roscommon, and was created Viscount Lanesborough in 1676.

He acquired lands in the baronies of Roscommon and Ballintober, County Roscommon, and in County Longford, in 1678 and 1679 respectively.

These grants were further augmented by the purchase of the Duke of Buckingham's Irish estates in 1710.

In 1724, the Lanesborough title became extinct.

The Lanesborough estates in England and Ireland were inherited by the 2nd Viscount's sister, who was married to Henry Fox.

Though the Longford and Roscommon properties were sold to Luke White in 1819, the Lane-Fox family continued to hold substantial property in both counties Leitrim and Waterford.

For the most part they were absentee landlords, their estates being managed by a succession of stewards, including Joshua Kell, who was a member of the Grand Jury for Leitrim, in 1851.

The family sold the bulk of their remaining estates to the Irish Land Commission in the early years of the 20th century.

First published in March, 2013. 

House of Rawdon

The illustrious family of RAWDON deduced its pedigree from Paulinus de Rawdon, to whom William the Conqueror granted considerable estates.

This Paulyn, or Paulinus, commanded a band of archers in the Norman invading army, and derived his surname of Rawdon, from the lands of that denomination, near Leeds, which constituted a portion of the royal grant.

From this successful soldier lineally sprang, 19th in descent, through a line of eminent ancestors,

GEORGE RAWDON (1604-84), who settled in Ireland, and took an active part as a military commander during the rebellion of 1641, in that kingdom; and subsequently, until his decease, in 1684, in the general affairs of Ireland.

Mr Rawdon married, in 1654, Dorothy, daughter of Edward, 2nd Viscount Conway.

They lived at Moira Castle, County Down.

Moira Castle. Photo Credit: Royal Irish Academy © RIA

He was the only son and heir of Francis Rawdon, of Rawdon Hill, near Leeds in Yorkshire.

Rawdon went to Court about the end of the reign of JAMES I and became private secretary to Lord Conway, Secretary of State.

After Lord Conway's death, Rawdon was attached to his son, the 2nd Viscount Conway, who had large estates in County Down. 

George Rawdon became his secretary (or agent) and frequently visited the Lisburn area.

He commanded a company of soldiers, and sat in the Irish Parliament of 1639 as MP for Belfast.

When the Irish Rebellion broke out on 23rd October, 1641, Rawdon was in London; but he lost no time in coming to the post of duty.

He travelled at once to Scotland, and crossed to Bangor, reaching Lisburn on the 27th November. 

The account of his visit to Lisburn at this critical time is fully recorded in a most interesting and vivid contemporary note in the old Vestry Book of Lisburn Cathedral.

The towns of Moira and Ballynahinch were founded by Rawdon.

He married, in 1639, Ursula, daughter of Sir Francis Stafford, and widow of Francis Hill, of Hillhall, by whom he had no surviving issue.

After her death he espoused, in 1654, Dorothy, eldest daughter of Edward, Viscount Conway.

She died in 1676.

There was an only son of this marriage, Sir Arthur Rawdon, who was buried beside his father in the vault.

Mr Rawdon was created a baronet, 1655, denominated, of Moira, County Down.

He died in 1684 and was succeeded by his eldest surviving son,  

SIR ARTHUR RAWDON, 2nd Baronet (1662-95), MP for County Down, 1692-5, a distinguished soldier, like his father, and a leader of the "Loyalists of Ulster", who fought against the army of JAMES II.

Sir Arthur was in Londonderry during the siege, but as he was dangerously ill he had to leave the town by the advice of his doctor.

His only son, 

SIR JOHN RAWDON, 3rd Baronet (1690-1724), MP for County Down, 1717-24, married Dorothy, daughter of Sir Richard Levinge Bt, Speaker of the Irish House of Commons (she, after his death, married the Most Rev Charles Cobbe, Lord Archbishop of Dublin), and had issue, an only child,

SIR JOHN RAWDON, 4th Baronet (1720-93), who was elevated to the peerage, in 1750, in the dignity of Baron Rawdon, of Moira, County Down.

His lordship was advanced to an earldom, in 1762, as EARL OF MOIRA.

He married thrice: firstly, to the Lady Helena, daughter of the Earl of Egmont; secondly, to Anna Hill, daughter of the Viscount Hillsborough; and thirdly, to the Lady Elizabeth, daughter of the Earl of Huntingdon.

His eldest son,  

FRANCIS EDWARD, 2nd Earl (1754-1826), KG PC, was advanced to a marquessate, as MARQUESS OF HASTINGS.

His lordship was a distinguished soldier and scholar, Governor-General of India, Fellow of the Royal Society, and fought in the American war.

He was present at the Battle of Bunker Hill.

All of these subsidiary titles, including the baronetcy, became extinct in 1868,  following the death of the 4th Marquess and 8th Baronet.
     First published in January, 2012.  Hastings arms courtesy of European Heraldry.

    Sunday, 26 May 2019

    Lake House, Ballydugan

    The Lake House in 2014

    THE TOWNLAND of Ballydugan lies a few miles south-west of Downpatrick, County Down.

    In olden times the county was occasionally referred to as Downshire, and the Hills, Marquesses of Downshire, take their title from this county.

    The nearest railway station was at Downpatrick, though the line closed down in 1950.

    Downpatrick Racecourse had a halt which operated on race days only.

    Ballydugan flour mill, now restored as a guesthouse, was built in 1792.

    Ballydugan Lake, which stands nearby, was used as a water source for the mill.

    Ballydugan House stands between the Lake and the race-course to the east.

    Directly beside the lake is the Lakeside Inn.

    Ballydugan Cottage was associated with the adjacent mill and seems to have been built ca 1830.

    This is a 1½ storey house with dormers comprising three bays, overlooking Ballydugan Lake, on Drumcullan Road.

    The cottage has a modest garden at the front, bounded to the road by a rendered boundary wall.

    A sloped garden rises via stone steps to wooded ground at the north.

    There is a larger garden at the opposite, lake side of the road, a well-maintained, sweeping lawn, bounded by Ballydugan Lake to the west.

    It truly is a most picturesque landscape, with a fine prospect of the lake and the Mourne Mountains to the west.

    Isaac Hardy rented the single-storey cottage and the associated mill from William Wallace, Robert Denvir and Sarah Rentoul, though we do not know whether Mr Hardy resided at the cottage.

    By the mid-19th century, Ballydugan Cottage lay vacant whilst the flour mill, less than 70 years after its construction, had been abandoned.

    In 1871, the cottage was leased by William Wallace & Partners.

    Major Charles C Johnston resided at the cottage, then known as ‘Lake Cottage’ during the 1870s.

    Major Johnston continued to reside at Lake Cottage until 1889, when the Rev Canon Lewis Arthur Pooler acquired it.

    The cottage was subsequently considerably remodelled ca 1890 with the addition of Victorian features, including its dormer windows.

    Dr Pooler was a canon of Down Cathedral and also Deputy Master of the County Down Grand Orange Lodge.

    He continued to reside at Lake Cottage until the end of the 19th century.

    In 1901 Lake Cottage was occupied by a solicitor called George T Harley, who changed its name to Ballydugan Cottage.

    Mr Harley was a native of the city of Cork and resided at Ballydugan with his wife, Clara, and their daughter, May.

    The 1901 census records that there were a number of staff employed to administer the household including a nurse and two domestic servants.

    Ballydugan Cottage comprised 14 rooms at this time.

    The Harleys continued to reside at the cottage until 1909, when the property briefly came into the possession of Mr C M Russell, also a solicitor.

    Mr Russell resided at Ballydugan Cottage with his wife Ann until 1912, when it was bought outright from Colonel the Rt Hon Robert Hugh Wallace CB CBE (1860-1929), of Myra Castle, by one James Kelly.

    Mr Kelly occupied the cottage during the 1930s; however, he had vacated it by the 1950s, when, about 1956, his relative, Kathleen Kelly, came into possession.

    I visited the Lake House recently and it appears to be undergoing a complete restoration.

    The garden in front of the house (beside the lake) has been landscaped and lawn sweeps down to the water.

    I intend to revisit Ballydugan during the summer, have a small shandy in the Lakeside Inn, and photograph the Lake House and its garden beside the lake.

    First published in May, 2017.

    Saturday, 25 May 2019

    The Cleggan Shoot


    "The main reason we go game shooting is because it is fun.

    The thought of taking a day out to enjoy the countryside in the company of friends is reason enough for most of us to don our complicated tweeds, wrestle the shotgun from the cabinet and take on hours of driving to reach some far-flung corner of our islands.

    Bad weather, however, tends to take the wind out of your sails.

    Or sometimes firmly put the wind in your sails and the rain down your back.

    When you find any game shooting which puts a smile on your face in spite of the conditions, you know you must have found something of a gem.

    I was reliably informed that the week before my visit last October the guns had been taking on the impressive partridges of the Cleggan Shoot in their shirt sleeves.

    This was cold comfort for the guns on this occasion, who found themselves bracing against the wind, and squinting through the rain in pursuit of their quarry.

    In spite of this, you would be hard pressed to see a downcast face all day.

    The Cleggan Shoot lies in the North Antrim hills above the Glens of Antrim, facing the Mull of Kintyre.

    Partridge game shooting was started there in 2000, adding to the established pheasant game shooting.

    The estate provides five partridge drives and nine main pheasant drives, with a further 10 drives used for smaller driven days and walked-up game shooting.

    The attitude and atmosphere of the Cleggan Shoot is set by Lord Rathcavan, the estate owner, and shoot manager Joe Taylor.

    Both men have a clear love of game shooting and of the countryside, and they have built up a team of like-minded people who give the game shooting its unique, welcoming feel.

    Joe explains,
    They’re a great bunch of lads, you won’t ever hear a cross word said between them. I think in 10 years I’ve only had two people leave - and you were probably better off without them. I think that says it all.
    This is backed up by Adam Lucas, one of Cleggan’s dedicated pickers-up who has been with the estate for six years:
    The game shooting is what brings you back, watching the game shooting and taking part by working the dogs. 
    The teamwork here is great, it’s good fun and there’s never a bad word said. At lunchtime we get well fed and watered - it’s just an excellent day.
    The guns on the day were more than happy to buy into the party spirit, it being a rare chance for a group of friends from all over Europe to get together.

    One of the guns, Haiko Visser, explained to me what made the journey from Switzerland to Northern Ireland to shoot worth it:
    “We came for the first time in 2009, and I’ve already booked up for next year. It’s a wonderful day out. For me it’s not just the game shooting which makes the day, it’s the whole weekend with the boys. 
    We’re spread all over Europe, making it difficult to get together regularly. Game shooting is the perfect excuse and you certainly don’t get moaned at by your wife in the same way for going out to the pub.

    “I live 20 miles south of Zurich, it’s a lovely part of the world - absolutely magnificent. Switzerland is a very outdoorsy sort of lifestyle. We’re all closeted up inside most of our lives when you think about it, so any chance to get outside - even on a day like this when it’s pouring with rain - is lovely. 
    You’re outside with the amazing landscape all around you, the air is fresh and you’re not surrounded by people and being pushed off the pavement.

    There is a balance to game shooting - why you do it, where you shoot, the quality of the game shooting and the people you do it with. I think this place has got the balance absolutely right.”
    Each of the guns is put under the care of a specific picker-up who will watch and advise throughout the day.

    This is particularly important due to the terrain of the estate, which once used to hold large numbers of grouse, and presents the partridges in a similar manner.

    As such safety is paramount, which is reinforced in the briefing at the beginning of the day.

    The nature of the terrain, being high on various hillsides and in deep valleys, offers a real variety of shooting.

    Guns move onto the pegs quietly and are live immediately. 

    The early birds do indeed burst off the hills like grouse, and the guns have to be ready to shoot them as such.

    A long blast of a horn indicates the beaters are about to break the skyline, at which point the style of shooting changes and the drives become the more usual style of partridge shooting most guns will be used to.

    In spite of the heavy rain the birds were extremely strong, flying hard and fast in consistent numbers interspersed with large coveys.

    The birds are bought in as chicks from the first week of April, and sometimes even the last week of March, so by October they are already six months old.

    This extra time obviously gives them time to adjust to the conditions on a Northern Ireland hillside, as it is most unusual to see birds flying so well in such tough conditions.

    Both Joe Taylor and head-keeper Steven Baird have been working on the shoot for over 10 years, and deserve great credit for creating what is a very impressive shoot.

    The main property on the 1,000 acres of the Cleggan Shoot, once a part of the vast O’Neill Estate, is an old shooting lodge.

    It was built in 1822 on the edge of what were then very extensive grouse moors.

    A love of shooting has been a feature of Lord Rathcavan’s family for several generations, as he explained:
    I always shot as a boy - though I wasn’t much good at it. My grandfather was a tremendous shooting man all his life. He was the youngest son, and so bought Cleggan from his father in 1927. 
    It remained part of the O’Neill estate in spite of the Land Act of the 1870s because shooting properties were exempt. All the shooting rights still belong to my cousin, who is the present Lord O’Neill.
    A real highlight of the day, and one of the key criteria for judging any shoot, is the food on offer.

    Lord Rathcavan was the proprietor of the Brasserie St Quentin on Knightsbridge, whose sign now hangs in the guns’ lunch room.

    His son, the Hon Francois O’Neill, now owns and runs [ran] the award-winning Brompton Bar and Grill from the same site, so clearly a passion for food runs in the blood:-
    “Shooting is about a lot more than just the shooting,” Lord Rathcavan explains. “The problem with being out here in Northern Ireland is we can’t hope to compete with the biggest shoots in England and Scotland, particularly the west country partridge shoots. As such we have to offer something different. 
    One of the ways we do that is the cultivation of the special atmosphere we have here, a big part of which is our lunches.

    “I buy the beef un-butchered from the local meat factory, making sure it’s all hung for 28 days. It’s so much better to see beef on the bone. I get the rib and stick it in the Aga at nine in the morning.
    After an hour or so I cut the skirt off, which then goes in the beater’s oven with the two big hunks of shoulder they have cooked in their oven in their shoot room.

    “I take the meat out of the oven at 12 and let it rest on top for about an hour, which is the most important part.
    Isabel is our lunch steward, the most wonderful girl who does all the other bits of cooking. The guns get a good wine, and the meal ends with a cheese board.

    “So many people come back here just because of our lunches - it’s all part of the camaraderie of the day.
    You can always judge how good a day people are having at lunchtime as it’s their first opportunity to mull over the shooting. I think it’s all part of the experience."

    Good though the food is, the quality of shooting on offer is not to be underestimated.

    Thanks to the varied terrain there is a wide range of sport on offer, from driven partridge and pheasant days to smaller boundary days and walked-up woodcock shooting.

    My old school pal Gavin Whittley pictured on the right in 2011

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.


    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.

    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.
    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.
    Shoot manager Joe Taylor (left) & Gavin Whittley discuss the morning’s drives.
    Unusually, the partridge shooting is charged on a fixed rate at £6,000 for a day on the basis of 300 birds.

    Though most guns will be used to being charged on a per-bird basis, the flat fee actually works out as extremely good value, coming in at about £20 per bird.

    Considering the quality of sport on offer, even in the rain, this seems like a bargain to me".

    First published in July, 2011. 

    Friday, 24 May 2019

    Stradbally Hall


    In the time of QUEEN MARY, this family, originally of the counties of Leicestershire and Lincolnshire, settled in Ireland.

    ROBERT COSSBYE, of Harmston, in Lincolnshire, living in 1516, married Isabel, daughter and heiress of Ralph Pare, of Great Leake, Nottinghamshire, and had a son and heir,

    JOHN COSBIE, who wedded Mabel, daughter of _____ Agard, of Foston, Nottinghamshire, and had two sons, viz. RICHARD, of Great Leake, and

    FRANCIS COSBIE (1510-80), the patriarch of the family in Ireland, a man famed for personal courage, as well as civil and military talents.

    When young he served in the wars of HENRY VIII in the Low Countries, and was not undistinguished.

    His abandonment of his native soil arose from the downfall of the Lord Protector, Sir Edward Seymour, 1st Duke of Somerset, whose daughter Mary, widow of Sir Henry Peyton, Knight, he had married.

    Deeming the disgrace and death of that once potent nobleman a sentence of exclusion from place and preferment in England, against his immediate connections at least, Cosbie (Mary Seymour, his first wife, being then dead), removed to Ireland, taking with him his second wife, Elizabeth Palmer, and the two surviving sons of the first.

    Here, in the land of his adoption, he soon found the opportunity of establishing a reputation, which he despaired of effecting in the land of his birth.

    He became an active defender of The Pale, and his vigilance, zeal, and success attracting the observation of government, he was appointed, by QUEEN MARY, 1558, General of the Kern, a post of great trust and importance in those times.

    In 1559 he represented the borough of Thomastown in parliament, when he was constituted, by ELIZABETH I, Sheriff of Kildare.

    Cosbie was granted, in 1562, the site of the suppressed abbey St Francis at Stradbally.

    He married firstly, the Lady Mary Seymour, daughter of Sir Edward Seymour, 1st Duke of Somerset, and had issue,
    ALEXANDER, his heir;
    General Cosby wedded secondly, in 1575, Elizabeth Palmer, and had issue, an only daughter, Catherine.

    He fell at the battle of Glendalough, 1580, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

    ALEXANDER COSBY, of Stradbally Abbey, who also obtained very extensive grants of land in the Queen's County.

    He wedded Dorcas, daughter of William Sydney, of Otford, Kent, maid of honour to ELIZABETH I, and had issue,
    FRANCIS, father of WILLIAM; fell at the battle of Stradbally Bridge;
    RICHARD, succeeded to his nephew;
    Mabel; Rose.
    Alexander Cosby, slain at the battle of Stradbally Bridge with the O'Mores, 1596, was succeeded, although for a few minutes only, by his eldest son,

    FRANCIS COSBY, of Stradbally Hall, who being slain as stated above, never enjoyed the inheritance, but was succeeded by his infant child,

    WILLIAM COSBY, of Stradbally Hall, born in 1596, who died in June that year, when the estates reverted to his uncle,

    RICHARD COSBY, of Stradbally Hall, Captain of the Kern, who gained the battle of Dunamace over the O'Mores, 1606, who espoused Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Robert Pigott, Knight, of Dysart, and had issue,
    ALEXANDER, his heir;
    FRANCIS, who succeeded his nephew at Stradbally;
    Richard Cosby died in 1631, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

    ALEXANDER COSBY (1610-36), of Stradbally Hall, who married Anne, daughter of Sir Francis Slingsby, Knight, of Kilmore, County Cork, and was succeeded by his son,

    FRANCIS COSBY, of Stradbally Hall, who dsp before 1638, when he was succeeded by his uncle,

    FRANCIS COSBY (1612-), of Stradbally Hall, MP for Carysfort, who wedded Ann, daughter of Sir Thomas Loftus, Knight, of Killyan, and had issue,
    ALEXANDER, his heir;
    Thomas, of Vicarstown; father of
    The eldest son,

    ALEXANDER COSBY, of Stradbally Hall, espoused Elizabeth, daughter of Henry L'Estrange, of Moystown, King's County, and had issue,
    DUDLEY, his heir;
    Alexander, father of PHILLIPS;
    Anne; Elizabeth; Jane; Dorcas; Isabella; Celia; Dorothy.
    Alexander Cosby died in 1694, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

    DUDLEY ALEXANDER SYDNEY COSBY (1662-1729), of Stradbally Hall, Lieutenant-Colonel, MP for Queen's County, 1703-29, who married firstly, Ann, daughter and heir of Sir Andrew Owen, Knight, which lady dsp 1698; and secondly, Sarah, daughter of Periam Pole, of Ballyfin, by whom he had,
    POLE, his heir;
    Colonel Cosbie was succeeded by his son,

    POLE COSBY, of Stradbally Hall, who wedded Mary, daughter and co-heir of Henry Dodwell, of Manor Dodwell, County Roscommon, and by her, left at his decease, in 1766 (with a daughter, Sarah, who married firstly, the Rt Hon Arthur Upton, of Castle Upton; and secondly, Robert, Earl of Farnham), a son and successor,

    DUDLEY ALEXANDER SYDNEY COSBY (c1730-74), MP for Carrick, 1763-8, 1ST BARON SYDNEY, of Leix, so created in 1768.

    His lordship, Minister Resident to Denmark, wedded, in 1773, the Lady Isabella St Lawrence, daughter of Thomas, 1st Earl of Howth, but died in the ensuing month, January, 1774, without issue.

    His peerage became extinct, while the inheritance reverted to his lordship's cousin,

    PHILLIPS COSBY, of Stradbally Hall, Admiral of the White, who espoused, in 1792, Eliza, daughter of William Gunthorpe, and sister of William Gunthorpe, of Southampton, but having no issue, was succeeded at his decease by his kinsman,

    THOMAS COSBY (1742-98), of Vicarstown, and afterwards of Stradbally, who wedded firstly, Frances Booker, and by her had two sons, both of whom died young.

    He married secondly, Grace, daughter and co-heir of George Johnstone, of Glaslough, County Monaghan, and had issue,
    Dudley, accidentally drowned, 1789, sp;
    Francis, drowned at cork, 1791, sp;
    THOMAS, his heir.
    Mr Cosby was succeeded by his only surviving son,

    THOMAS COSBY, of Stradbally Hall, Governor of Queen's County, High Sheriff, 1809, who wedded, in 1802, Charlotte Elizabeth, daughter of the Rt Hon Thomas Kelly, Lord Chief Justice of the Court of Common Pleas in Ireland, and had issue,
    THOMAS PHILLIPS, his heir;
    William (Rev);
    Sydney, father of
    Wellesley Pole;
    Frances Elizabeth; Harriet Georgiana.
    Mr Cosby, High Sheriff of Queen's County, died in 1832, and was succeeded by his son,

    THOMAS PHILLIPS COSBY JP DL (1803-51), of Stradbally Hall, High Sheriff of Queen's County, 1834, Captain, Royal Regiment of Horse Guards, and dsp 1851, when the property devolved upon his nephew,

    ROBERT ASHWORTH GODOLPHIN COSBY JP (1837-1920), of Stradbally Hall, Vice Lord-Lieutenant of the Queen's County, High Sheriff of Queen's County, 1863, Colonel, 3rd Leinster Regiment, who wedded firstly, in 1859, Alice Sophia Elizabeth, only daughter of Sir George Edward Pocock Bt, of The Priory, Christchurch, Hampshire, and had issue,
    Sydney George Coventry;
    Edith Augusta Emily; Mary Powlet; Aline Islay; Lilian Alice; Violet Grace.
    Colonel Cosby married secondly, in 1885, Eliza, daughter of the Rev Capel Molyneux, Vicar of St Paul's, Onslow Square, and widow of Sir Charles Goring, 9th Baronet, of Highden, Sussex.

    He was succeeded by his eldest son,

    DUDLEY SYDNEY ASHWORTH COSBY DL (1862-1923), of Stradbally Hall, Captain, 3rd Battalion, Scottish Rifles, who wedded, in 1895, Emily Mabel, daughter of Lieutenant-General James Gubbins, and had issue,
    Eric James Dudley;
    Ivan Robert Sydney;
    Irene Mabel Alys; Dulcie Iris Voilet.
    Captain Cosby was succeeded by his eldest son,

    ERROLD ASHWORTH SYDNEY COSBY (1898-1984), of Stradbally Hall, Major, The Rifle Brigade, who wedded, in 1934, Enid Elizabeth, daughter of Major Maurice William Chetwode Hamilton, and had issue,
    David Ashworth Sydney Phillips, b 1947;
    Julian Charles Seymour Francis, b 1947;
    Anthea Moira Enid, b 1940.
    Major Cosby was succeeded by his eldest son,

    ADRIAN PATRICK SYDNEY ALEXANDER COSBY (1937-), of Stradbally Hall, Irish Guards, who married, in 1972, Alison Margaret, daughter of Lieutenant-Colonel Charles Wylie, and has issue,
    Mary Siobhan Elizabeth, b 1973.
    Entrance Front

    STRADBALLY HALL, County Laois, is a nine-bay, two-storey Georgian house, built in 1772.

    The present mansion's predecessor was erected by Lieutenant-Colonel Dudley Cosby in 1699, likely incorporating an earlier dwelling.

    About 1868, Ralph Ashworth Godolphin Cosby engaged Sir Charles Lanyon to enlarge and re-model the house in the Italianate style.

    Garden Front

    A new entrance front was added with a large, single-storey, balustraded portico.

    Stradbally estate is now renowned for its Electric Picnic music festival held in the grounds.

    First published in December, 2016.

    Thomas A Hope


    JOHN HOPE, of Hopefold, Astley Green, Lancashire, was father of

    PETER HOPE (1671-1741), who married Hannah Kirkman, and had a son,

    SAMUEL HOPE (1709-81), who wedded firstly, Amy Venables; and secondly, Martha Hepworth, by whom he had issue,

    WILLIAM HOPE (1751-1827), of Liverpool, who married, in 1779, Mary, daughter of Robert Jones, of Liverpool (both of whom were buried at the Necropolis, Liverpool), and had issue,
    SAMUEL, of whom presently;
    Joseph Walley;
    The second son,

    SAMUEL HOPE JP (1781-1837), of Liverpool, Banker, wedded, in 1816, Rebekah, daughter of Thomas Bateman, of Middleton Hall, Derbyshire, and had issue,
    THOMAS ARTHUR, of whom presently;
    William Carey;
    Samuel Pearce.
    The eldest son,

    THOMAS ARTHUR HOPE JP (1817-97), of 14 Airlie Gardens, Kensington, formerly of Stanton, Bebington, Cheshire, married, in 1839, Emily, youngest daughter of Christopher Hird Jones, of Liverpool, and had numerous issue.


    THE HOPES were a large, wealthy and well connected family of Liverpool bankers and landowners.

    Samuel Hope was a Liberal non-conformist, noted for his philanthropic work in the city.

    His son, Thomas Arthur Hope, and his wife, Emily Hird Jones, had thirteen children.

    The family owned land in Cheshire, Flintshire and County Tyrone.

    They lived in a succession of properties in Liverpool, the Wirral and London.

    They are known to have associated with other prominent Liberal families including the Rathbones of Liverpool and the Gregs of Styal in Cheshire. 

    The famous Hope Collection can be seen at the Lady Lever Art Gallery in Liverpool. The Hopes were wealthy bankers: Thomas Hope, born in 1769.
    The Rt Hon Sir Alexander James Beresford Hope was married to the Hon Louisa Beresford, daughter of William, 1st Lord Decies (3rd son of 1st Earl of Tyrone).

    First published in December, 2009.

    Thursday, 23 May 2019

    Kilkenny Castle


    The antiquity of this family is indisputable; but whence it immediately derives its origin is not so clearly established.

    The surname, however, admits of no doubt as springing from the office of CHIEF BUTLER OF IRELAND, conferred by HENRY II upon

    THEOBALD FITZWALTER, in 1177, who had accompanied him into that kingdom in 1171.

    This Theobald was eldest son of Hervey Walter (one of the companions of WILLIAM THE CONQUEROR), by Matilda de Valoignes, and brother of Hubert, Archbishop of Canterbury in 1193 (translated from the see of Salisbury while a prisoner in the Holy Land), and subsequently Chancellor, Chief Justice, and Treasurer of England.

    Theobald Walter having returned into England, afterwards accompanied PRINCE JOHN into Ireland, in 1185.

    He was possessed of the baronies of Upper Ormond, Lower Ormond, and numerous other territories; and dying in 1206, was succeeded by his only son, by his wife, Maud, daughter and heir of Robert de Vavasour,

    THEOBALD, 2nd Butler, who first assumed the surname of Le Botiler or Butler in 1221.

    He married Joan, eldest sister and co-heir of John de Marisco, a considerable baron in Ireland, to whose estates in Ireland and England his posterity succeeded; and dying about 1230 was succeeded by his eldest son,

    THEOBALD, 3rd Butler, who wedded Margery, eldest daughter of Richard de Burgh (ancestor of the Earls of Clanricarde), by whom he acquired a considerable accession of landed property.

    He died in 1248, and was succeeded by his son,

    THEOBALD, 4th Butler (1242-85), who sat as a Baron in the Parliament of Ireland, and assisted EDWARD I in his wars in Scotland.

    He espoused Joan, youngest daughter of John FitzGeoffrey, Lord of Kirtling and Sheriff of Yorkshire, Lord Justice of Ireland, and youngest son of the famous Geoffrey FitzPeter, Earl of Essex, by whom he had a numerous family.

    This Theobald, who obtained a grant from EDWARD I of the prisage of wines in Ireland, died in 1285, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

    THEOBALD, 5th Butler (1269-99), who sat in parliament as a Baron, his name appearing fifth upon the roll.

    He died unmarried, and was succeeded in his barony and estates by his brother,

    SIR EDMOND, 6th Butler (c1270-1321); who received the honour of knighthood in London, 1309.

    In 1312 he was appointed Lord Deputy of Ireland; in 1314, Chief Governor, under the title of Lord Justice; and, in 1315, created EARL OF CARRICK.

    His lordship wedded, in 1302, Joan, daughter of John, 1st Earl of Kildare, by whom, with two daughters, he had three sons,
    JAMES, his successor;
    John, from whom the Earls of Carrick derive;
    Lord Carrick, going on a pilgrimage to Spain, to the shrine of Santiago de Compostela, died in 1321 after his return to London, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

    JAMES, 2nd Earl and 7th Butler (c1305-38), who was a minor at the decease of his father, but obtained licence four years later, for the sum of 2,000 marks, to marry whomsoever he pleased.

    He accordingly wedded Eleanor, second daughter of Humphrey, 4th Earl of Hereford, High Constable of England, by the Lady Elizabeth, daughter of EDWARD I; and was created, in consequence of this alliance, by EDWARD III, in 1328, EARL OF ORMOND.

    His lordship had a renewed grant of the prisage of wines (which had been resumed by the Crown), and a grant of the regalities, liberties, etc, of County Tipperary, with the rights of a palatine in that county for life.

    He was succeeded by his elder son,

    JAMES, 2nd Earl (1331-82), called The Noble Earl on account of being great-grandson of EDWARD I.

    In 1359 and 1360, his lordship was appointed Lord Justice of Ireland; and was succeeded by his son (by Elizabeth, daughter of Sir John Darcy (Lord Justice of Ireland),

    JAMES, 3rd Earl (c1359-1405); who by building and making Gowran Castle his usual residence, was commonly called Earl of Gowran.

    His lordship purchased, in 1391, Kilkenny Castle from the heirs of Sir Hugh le Despencer, which he made his chief place of abode.

    In 1392, 1401, and 1404, his lordship was Lord Justice of Ireland.

    He wedded firstly, Anne, daugher of John, 4th Baron Welles, and had issue,
    JAMES, his successor;
    Richard (Sir), of Polestown;
    Philip (Sir);
    Ralph (Sir);
    His lordship espoused secondly, in 1399, Katherine FitzGerald, of Desmond, by whom he four children.

    He was succeeded by his eldest son,

    JAMES, 4th Earl (1392-1452), who was called The White Earl, and was esteemed for his learning.

    His lordship prevailed upon HENRY V to create a king-of-arms in Ireland by the title Ireland King-of-Arms (a designation altered by HENRY VIII to Ulster King-of-Arms, and he gave lands forever to the heralds' college.

    He was Lord Justice of Ireland in 1407, and again in 1440, in which latter year he had a grant of the temporalities of the see of Cashel for ten years after the decease of the Archbishop, Richard O'Hedian.

    His lordship married firstly, in 1413, Joan, daughter of William de Beauchamp, 1st Baron Bergavenny, by whom he had three sons, successive earls, and two daughters; and secondly, in 1432, Elizabeth, daughter of Gerald, 5th Earl of Kildare, by whom he had no issue.

    His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,

    JAMES, 5th Earl, KG (1420-61); who was created, by HENRY VI, in 1449, for his fidelity to the Lancastrian interest, EARL OF WILTSHIRE.

    In 1451, was was made Lord Deputy of Ireland; and the next year, succeeding his father in the title of ORMOND, was appointed Lord Lieutenant of Ireland for ten years.

    In 1455, he was constituted LORD HIGH TREASURER OF ENGLAND, and afterwards installed a Knight of the Garter.

    Falling into the hands of the Yorkists, after the battle of Towton, his lordship was beheaded, in 1461, when the earldom of Wiltshire expired, as would that of Ormond, the Earl's brother and heir being also at the battle of Towton, and in consequence attainted, had not EDWARD IV restored him in blood, and so enabled him to succeed as

    JOHN, 6th Earl, who was considered one of the first gentlemen of the age in which he lived; and EDWARD IV is reported to have said that "if good breeding and liberal qualities were lost in the world, they might all be found in the Earl of Ormond."

    He was complete master of the languages of Europe, and was sent ambassador to its principal courts.

    His lordship died in 1476, in the Holy Land, having, in a fit of devotion, made a visit to Jerusalem, and was succeeded by his brother,

    THOMAS, 7th Earl (1426-1515); who was also attainted, but restored by HENRY VII's first parliament in 1485, and the statutes made at Westminster, in the reign of EDWARD IV, which declared him and his brothers traitors, were utterly abrogated.

    He was afterwards sworn of the Privy Council, and was summoned to parliament as Lord Rochford.

    Lord Ormond left two daughters, who inherited the English estates, namely,
    At the demise of his lordship, in 1515, the peerage passed to his kinsman,

    SIR PIERS BUTLER (1467-1539), as 8th Earl (great-grandson of 3rd Earl); but this nobleman was obliged to relinquish it to Sir Thomas Boleyn, Viscount Rochford.

    In consideration of which abandonment, however, Sir Piers was created by HENRY VIII, in 1528, EARL OF OSSORY.

    Soon after this, he returned to Ireland, where he was chosen Lord Deputy by the Council, and proceeding through the city of Dublin on horseback to St Mary's Abbey, was there sworn into office.

    Thomas Boleyn, Earl of Ormond, dying without issue, 1539, the King restored the Earl of Ossory to his original title of Ormond.

    He wedded Margaret, second daughter of Gerald, 8th Earl of Kildare (which lady was called the Good Countess of Ormond), and had, with other issue,
    JAMES, his successor;
    Richard, 1st Viscount Mountgarret;
    His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,

    JAMES, 2nd Earl of Ossory (1496-1546), who had been created, in 1535, Viscount Thurles; and was subsequently restored, 1541, to the earldom of Ormond, as 9th Earl.

    He wedded Joan, daughter and heir of James, 10th Earl of Desmond, and had seven sons, namely,
    THOMAS, his successor;
    Edmund (Sir);
    His lordship died by poison administered at a supper at Ely Palace, Holborn, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

    THOMAS, 10th Earl, KG (c1531-1614), called, from the darkness of his complexion, The Black Earl.

    This nobleman was the first of his family who conformed to the Church of England.

    His lordship died without surviving male issue, and was succeeded by his kinsman,

    WALTER, 11th Earl, son of John, third son of the 9th Earl; who died in 1632, and was succeeded by his grandson,

    JAMES, 12th Earl, KG (1610-88), six times Lord Lieutenant of Ireland.

    His lordship was created, in 1642, MARQUESS OF ORMONDE, and Baron Butler, of Llanthony, and Earl of Brecknock, 1660.

    This nobleman, for his fidelity to the house of STUART, and his eminent services in the royal cause, was elevated at the restoration of the monarchy, 1661, to the DUKEDOM OF ORMONDE.

    His Grace was appointed Lord Lieutenant of Ireland in 1662, and continued in that high office until 1668.

    He married his cousin, Elizabeth Preston, in her own right Baroness Dingwall, and had surviving issue,
    THOMAS (1634-80), father of JAMES, 2nd Duke;
    Richard, 1st EARL OF ARRAN;
    John, 1st EARL OF GOWRAN;
    Elizabeth; Mary.
    His Grace was succeeded by his grandson,

    JAMES, 2nd Duke, KG (1665-1745), who inherited the Scottish barony of DINGWALL from his grandmother.

    This nobleman was appointed a Lord of the Bedchamber in 1685; and serving in the army, participated in the victory over the unfortunate Duke of Monmouth, at Sedgemore.

    His Grace was afterwards, however, one of the first to join the standard of the Prince of Orange; and when that prince ascended the throne, His Grace obtained the Garter, and was constituted HIGH CONSTABLE OF ENGLAND for the coronation.

    He attended WILLIAM III into Ireland, was at the Boyne, and subsequently entertained His Majesty most sumptuously at Kilkenny Castle.

    In 1693, he was at the battle of Landen, where he received several wounds, and had a horse shot under him.

    In 1702, His Grace was constituted, by QUEEN ANNE, COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF of the land forces sent against France and Spain, when he destroyed the French fleet, sunk the Spanish galleons in Vigo harbour, and took Redondela Fort, for which important services he received the thanks of both houses of parliament.

    In 1711, he was declared CAPTAIN-GENERAL and COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF of the land forces in Great Britain, or which were, or should be, employed abroad in conjunction with the troops of the allies; which post he held till the treaty of Utrecht, in 1713; in which year he was made Warden of the Cinque Ports and Constable of Dover Castle.

    But two years later (GEORGE I in the interim having succeeded to the throne), His Grace was impeached for high treason, and having retired into France, was attainted, when his estates became forfeited, his English honours extinguished, and Parliament passed an act which annulled the regalities and liberties of the County Palatine of Tipperary, vested his lands in the Crown, and proclaimed a reward of £10,000 for his apprehension, should he attempt to land in Ireland.

    But the same parliament also passed an act, in 1721, to enable the Duke's brother, the Earl of Arran, to purchase the estate, which his lordship did accordingly.

    This great but unfortunate nobleman married firstly, Anne, daughter of Viscount Hyde of Kenilworth, and had one daughter; and secondly, in 1685, Mary, eldest surviving daughter of Henry, 1st Duke of Beaufort, and left one surviving child, MARY.

    His Grace resided in his exile chiefly at Avignon.

    He had a pension from the Spanish court of 2,000 pistoles, and died in 1745, when his remains were brought into England, 1746, and deposited in the family vault, in HENRY VIII's chapel, Westminster Abbey.

    At this period, it was supposed that the Duke's honours were all forfeited under the act of attainder passed by Parliament; but it was subsequently decided that no proceeding of the English legislature could affect Irish dignities.

    According to that decision, His Grace's brother,

    CHARLES (1671-1758), who, in 1683, had been created Baron Butler, and in 1693, Baron Cloughgrenan, Viscount Tullogh, and Earl of Arran, assumed the style of 14th Earl of Ormond and 3rd Duke and Marquess; but his lordship never enjoyed, assumed, or was aware of possessing the English and Irish Dukedom or Marquessate.

    He wedded Elizabeth, fourth and youngest daughter of Thomas, 2nd Baron Crew, but had no issue.

    He died in 1758, when his own honours expired, with the marquessate and dukedom of ORMONDE.

    The Scottish barony of Dingwall passed from the Butler family to the heir of the Prestons, and the Irish earldom of Ormonde and Viscountcy of Thurles, supposed to have fallen under the English attainder, became dormant, in which state those honours remained, until restored, in 1791, by the decision of the Irish House of Lords, to

    JOHN BUTLER (c1744-66), of Garryricken, great-grandson of Richard Butler, of Kilcash, younger brother of the 12th Earl, who espoused, in 1763, Bridget Stacy, but had no issue, when the family honours reverted to his cousin,

    WALTER (1703-83), who did not assume the titles.

    He married, in 1732, Ellen (Eleanor), eldest daughter of Nicholas Morris, of The Court, County Dublin, and had issue,
    JOHN, his successor;
    Frances; Susanna; Eleanor.
    He was succeeded by his only son,

    JOHN, 17th Earl (1740-95), by decision of the House of Lords, 1791, who wedded, in 1769, the Lady Anne Wandesford, daughter and sole heir of John, last Earl of Wandesford, and had issue,
    WALTER, his successor;
    Charles Harward;
    Elizabeth; Eleanor.
    His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,

    WALTER, 18th Earl, KP (1770-1820); created MARQUESS OF ORMONDE, who wedded, in 1805, Anna Maria Catherine, daughter and sole heir of Joseph Hart Pryce Clarke, but had no issue.

    His lordship died in 1820, when the marquessate and English barony expired, and the other honours reverted to his brother,

    JAMES,19th Earl, KP (1777-1838); who was created, at the coronation of GEORGE IV, 1821, a peer of the United Kingdom, as Baron Ormonde; and, in 1825, advanced to the dignity of MARQUESS OF ORMONDE.

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

    He wedded, in 1807, Grace Louisa, daughter of the Rt Hon John Staples, and had issue,
    JOHN, his successor;
    Walter Wandesford;
    James Wandesford;
    Richard Molesworth;
    Charles Wandesford;
    Anne; Louisa Grace; Elizabeth; Mary Charlotte.
    His lordship, Hereditary Chief Butler of Ireland, Knight of St Patrick, Lord-Lieutenant of County Kilkenny, Colonel of the Kilkenny Militia, was succeeded by his eldest son,

    JOHN, 2nd Marquess, KP (1808-54), who espoused, in 1843, Frances Jane, daughter of General the Hon Sir Edward Paget GCB, and was succeeded by his son,

    JAMES EDWARD WILLIAM THEOBALD, 3rd Marquess, KP (1844-1919), Commodore, Royal Yacht Squadron, who wedded, in 1876, the Lady Elizabeth Harriett Grosvenor, daughter of the 1st Duke of Westminster, though had no issue, and the honours reverted to his brother,

    JAMES ARTHUR WELLINGTON FOLEY, 4th Marquess (1849-1943), who married, in 1887, Ellen, daughter of General Anson Stager, USA, and was succeeded by his son,

    JAMES GEORGE ANSON, 5th Marquess (1890-1949), Major, the Life Guards, who espoused, in 1915, Sybil Inna Mildred, daughter of the 2nd Baron de Ramsey, though had no issue, and was succeeded by his brother,

    (JAMES) ARTHUR NORMAN, 6th Marquess, CVO MC (1893-1971), who married, in 1924, Jessie, daughter of Charles Carlos Clarke, though died without issue, when the titles reverted to his cousin,

    JAMES HUBERT THEOBALD CHARLES, 7th Marquess, MBE (1899-1977), also Earl of Ormond, Earl of Ossory, Viscount Thurles, and Baron Ormonde.

    His lordship wedded, in 1935, Nan, daughter of Garth Griffith Gilpin, and had two daughters,
    He married secondly, in 1976, Elizabeth, daughter of Charles R Rarden, though had no issue.

    Without a male heir the marquessate expired in 1997, and the earldom is dormant.

    The 18th Viscount Mountgarret, who succeeded his father in 2004, is understood to be the likely heir of the 7th Marquess's related title, Earl of Ormond, but has not successfully proven the claim.

    KILKENNY CASTLE, County Kilkenny, is an impressive large-scale castle, representing an artefact of great significance in the architectural heritage of the county, having long-standing historic associations with the noble and illustrious house of Butler, Dukes, Marquesses and Earls of Ormonde.

    Having origins in a late 12th century earthwork castle, the site has been continuously occupied ever since, with the present Kilkenny Castle surviving from a comprehensive early to mid-19th century redevelopment programme, completed to plans devised by William Robertson (1770-1850), retaining an important element dating from the early 18th century.

    An elegantly composed Classical frontispiece built for James Butler (1665-1745), 2nd Duke, possibly to designs prepared by William Robinson (d 1712) or Francis Place (1647-1728), exhibiting high quality stone masonry, is positioned almost on line with a similar breakfront in the associated stable complex, thereby enhancing the formal quality of the streetscape of The Parade.

    Of particular renown is the great hall accommodated in a later range, built to the designs of Sir Thomas Newenham Deane (1827-99) and Benjamin Woodward (1816-61).

    This is an exposed timber roof construction identifying the technical or engineering importance of the site, featuring a decorative scheme of artistic significance by John Hungerford Pollen (1820-1902).

    A chimney-piece carved by Charles William Harrison (c.1835-1903) (also responsible for carved embellishments in the arcaded stair-hall) exhibits particularly fine craftsmanship.

    The Library

    Several monarchs have stayed at Kilkenny Castle during the course of its history, including RICHARD II, JAMES II, WILLIAM III, EDWARD VII, and GEORGE V.

    The Long Gallery

    In 1935 the Ormondes ceased to live in the castle, which stood empty and neglected for the next thirty years.

    EDWARD VII leaving the Castle

    In 1967, however, the 6th Marquess presented it to the local committee and it has been largely restored as a state possession.

    Having been carefully restored over the course of the late 20th century by the Irish state, the castle remains a valuable anchor site contributing significantly to the character of the townscape.

    First published in September, 2012.