Re: Re: ‘Dutch Billys’

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I’m cooling on the Henry Holland connection, this looks more promising:

Limerick City Museum hold a collection of maps relating to the estate of Edward Hoare, which were surveyed and drawn by John Appleyard in 1747.

No. 8 in that collection appears to be the plot of ground at the junction of Bonifield Lane [Meat Market Lane] and Sheep Street on which the three Billys recorded in the 1899 photographs stood. Appleyards survey, which he takes the trouble to tell us includes ‘dimensions and boundaries of the said premises . . . exactly taken & marked on the above map’ is dated 1 August 1747.

These documents are available on the museum web site, although the resolution isn’t great.

The interesting thing is that the Appleyard survey depicts a large square site mostly occupied by a ‘large new shambles’ which had a gate onto Bonifield Lane. There were three stables fronting Sheep Street at the northern end of the site, but of the three Billys, only the corner house, described as ‘one large house’ had been built by this time, the occupant being a John Casy, carpenter, who rented the house from David Bindon Esq. [likely to be the David Bindon, who was M.P. For Ennis and brother of the the amateur architect Francis Bindon].

This would mean that the other two Billys date to after August 1747.

That will come as interesting news to them that thought that the Billy tradition all died out in the 1730s!

This doesn’t tell us who built the houses, but at least we have a couple of candidates now, the carpenter John Casy and the Bindon brothers.

Francis Bindon of course has rock solid Georgian credentials, but, on the other hand, he is associated with the John’s Square development in Limerick of 1751, which might be all dull-as-dishwater Cassellsesque to the front, but which we know featured a couple of delicate little Dutch gables on at least one of the rear elevations.

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