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Bracklyn House, County Westmeath
15401405
General view of front façade (west)
Reg. No.15401405
Date1790 - 1860
Previous NameN/A
TownlandBRACKLIN
CountyCounty Westmeath
Coordinates260211, 258250
Categories of Special InterestARCHITECTURAL ARTISTIC ARCHAEOLOGICAL HISTORICAL
RatingRegional
Original Usecountry house
In Use Ashouse
 
Description
Detached five-bay two-storey over basement neoclassical country house, built c.1790, with projecting single-bay Doric porch to the centre of entrance front (west), c.1855, and single-storey bow-ended wings to either end (north and south), built c.1910. Shallow-hipped natural slate roof with rendered chimneystacks and an ashlar limestone eaves course. Raised parapet with ashlar limestone coping over to entrance front (west). Smooth rendered walls with projecting stone string course at ground floor level. Projecting porch constructed of ashlar limestone with extensive ashlar detailing, including Doric pilasters and columns having cornice over. Square-headed window openings with cut stone sills, plain stripped architraves and six-over-six pane timber sliding sash windows. Replacement windows to flanking wings. Round-headed doorcase to projecting porch with ashlar limestone surround. Round-headed window openings with one-over-one pane timber sliding sash windows to side elevations of porch (north and south). House bounded to front by low ashlar limestone plinth wall. Set back from road in extensive landscaped grounds to the south of Delvin with gate lodge (15401322) to west, mausoleum to north (15401406) and an extensive complex of outbuildings to rear (east) and to south side, many contemporary with the house. Three-storey extension to rear of house, c.1855.

Appraisal

A substantial and delicately detailed neoclassical country house, which retains its early form, character and much of its early fabric. It is built in a typically plain but well-proportioned Neoclassical idiom and represents an early example of this type of architecture in Westmeath. The later Doric porch, added c.1855, is correctly proportioned and well-detailed in crisp ashlar limestone and it creates a pleasant contrast with the plain detailing of the main body of the house. The regular form and restrained detailing of this country house is also in stark contrast with the boldly detailed water-weathered gate lodge to the west (15401322). Bracklyn House was built by a branch of the Fetherston-Haugh Family in the late eighteenth-century on land acquired from the Pakenham Family of Tullynally Castle, Castlepollard. The Fetherston-Haughs were an important landholding family in Westmeath during the nineteenth century and had further country seats at nearby Rockview House, at Griffithstown (near Kinnegad) and at Newpass (near Rathoath). The present house occupies the site of a fifteenth century tower house. It is quite likely that some of the fabric of this earlier structure may have been used in the construction of the main house or, more likely, in the construction of the complex of outbuildings to the rear. Bracklyn House forms the centrepiece of an important group of structures with the gate lodge (15401322), the mausoleum (15401406) and the extensive collection of ancillary outbuildings to the rear (east) and to the south.
 
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