Woostock Estate                         

The architect Francis Bindon built Woodstock House in 1745 for Sir William Fownes; whose daughter later married William Tighe (1766 – 1816). Wings designed by Daniel Robertson were added c.1806, and a decorative iron staircase was installed c.1850 by Richard Turner.  Sir William was the Guardian of his cousin Sarah Ponsonby, who  ran away with her friend Eleanor Butler and they become famous as the Ladies of Llangollen; writers and poets including Byron, Shelley, Wordsworth, Southey and Scott frequented their house.

The Tighe family lived at the house until 1918. Captain Tighe was murdered in London during WWI by a French burglar called De Stamer, who was hanged. Bryan Tighe disappeared during WWII tank fighting.  During the War of Independence, the house was occupied by a company of British Auxiliaries; taken over by the Irish Free State army, it was burnt by Republicans during the Irish Civil War, and has deteriorated badly since, but is currently undergoing restoration. 

Lady Louisa Tighe (née Lennox) laid out Woodstock Demesne during the 19th century with head gardeners James Butler and Scotsman Charles MacDonald. Woodstock Estate comprises 50 acres of formal and informal gardens with an arboretum, walled garden, terraced garden, yew walk, rose garden, Monkey Puzzle Avenue, Noble Fir Avenue, a summer house, a fountain, a Dovecote with seven tiers of nesting boxes, Ornamental Dairy or Grotto and specimen or champion trees from Asia and South America in particular. The avenue of 130 monkey-puzzle trees is the longest of its kind in Europe. The Ladies’ Walk leads to an exit gate in the estate wall beside an impressive stand of Californian Redwoods.  Lady Louise was also famous for having danced at the ball on the eve of Waterloo. www.woodstock.ie

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