Re: Re: ‘Dutch Billys’

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@gunter wrote:

After Dublin, I gather Limerick was ‘Billy’ central. I’m not aware of any studies or publications on Dutch Billys in Limerick, just the odd glimpse in old photographs, same as Dublin.

I think the pair you’ve shown beside the castle were just built about ten years ago as some kind of olde worlde backdrop to a pub, I don’t think they’re supposed to be reconstructions of actual houses on that site, just worthy enough echos of a lost building type. Somebody down there will know, but they probably keep that kind of information to themselves.

Jim Kemmy / Larry Walsh wrote the following in a book called “old Limerick in Postcards”.

After the 1651 Siege of Limerick, all the Catholic merchants were banished, and their places taken by English and Dutch merchants. The Earl of Orrery, governor of the city, brought over dozens of Dutch families, who prospered, particularly in the woollen industry.

The best known of the Dutch families were the Verekers, Vandeleurs, Yorkes, Foxons and D’Esterres, who rose to prominence in local politics. They also influenced the city’s architecture. Tall Dutch-gabled houses were built in many parts of Limerick in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries.

In Broad Street, the houses had steeply pitched gables, while those in the Meat Market and Castle Street and John’s Square had rounded, pointed or pedimented gables. Only two of these gables have survived and can be seen at the rear of the John’s Square houses, beside Brennan’s Row.

With the increasing availability of brick, most of these houses were built with the products of local brickworks, but many retained stone trimmings. They fell into decay when the merchant owners moved out of the Englishtown and Irishtown in the nineteenth century and the new landlords failed to maintain them. The houses became tenements and most were demolished in the 1930’s.

Here a few examples of Dutch-gabled houses from Limerick Museum online.

Building alongside Exchange, rear of St. Mary’s Cathedral (illustration above and first picture below) The second one below is from Mary Street and the last one Castle Street?

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