1895 – Galtee Castle, Skeheenarinky, Co. Tipperary

Architect: Alfred Darbyshire




Originally constructed as a hunting lodge for the 2nd Earl of Kingston, ca 1780, and later remodelled in 1825 by the 3rd Earl. In the 1850s, the Kingstons were forced to sell off vast amounts of their landed estate due to debts, including the lodge and approximately 20,000 acres surrounding it. The building was remodelled and expanded between 1892-1895, to designs of Alfred Darbyshire, for its owner Abel Buckley MP, of Ryecroft Hall near Manchester. The illustration of this design was published in The Builder, 14 September 1895.

The Irish Land Commission acquired the demesne and house in the late 1930s. After allocating the land between afforestation and farmers, the house was offered for sale. The only offer was from a priest in Glanworth, County Cork, who wished to use the stone and the slates to build a new church in his parish. The house was pulled down and dismantled in 1941.

“Galtee Castle is situated in co. Cork, about six miles from Mitchelstown, and at the base of the Galtee range of mountains. The present buildings occupy the site of a shooting-box, built by George, Earl of Kingston, in 1823, and occupy a commanding position at the head of a richly- wooded valley. The castle is backed by a deer-forest and wild moorland, the buildings are immediately surrounded by pine-forests, and the view we illustrate looks upon a beautiful valley, through which a trout-stream gently flows on its way to the river.

Galtee Castle is the residence of Mr. Abel Buckley, J.P., and has been built of red rubble stone with limestone dressings, both stones having been procured on the estate. The accommodation consists of an entrance-hall, dining and drawing rooms, boudoir, library, gun-room, and a billiard-room, with open timber roof and lantern light.

The buildings have been erected under one contract by Messrs. Wm. Brown & Son, of Salford ; the joiners’ work has been made in England, but the contractors have employed Irish masons and bricklayers, and some of the minor trades have been carried out by Irish labour. The Castle has been supplied with the electric light by Messrs. Drake & Gorham, of Westminster, who have secured the motive power by utilising the stream flowing through the valley. The whole of the works have carried out under the superintendence of the architects, Messrs. Darbyshire & Smith. Manchester.” The Builder, September 14 1895.