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Westport House, Westport, County Mayo
31211051
Representative view of coach house-cum-stable outbuilding.
Reg. No.31211051
Date1730 - 1740
Previous NameN/A
TownlandWESTPORT DEMESNE [MURR. BY.]
CountyCounty Mayo
Coordinates98816, 284724
Categories of Special InterestARCHITECTURAL ARTISTIC TECHNICAL
RatingRegional
Original Usestables
In Use Asstables
 
Description
Stable complex, dated 1734; built 1734-5; extant 1760, including: Detached nine-bay two-storey coach house-cum-stable outbuilding on a T-shaped plan centred on three-bay full-height pedimented breakfront; two-bay two-storey side elevations. Burnt, 1864. Reconstructed, 1914. Hipped slate roof on a T-shaped plan centred on pitched (gabled) slate roof with clay ridge tiles centred on timber boarded "cupola" on an octagonal plan, rendered chimney stacks having stringcourses below "Cyma Recta"- or "Cyma Reversa"-detailed cornice capping supporting terracotta or yellow terracotta pots, rooflights to rear (north) pitch, and cast-iron rainwater goods on dragged cut-limestone "Cyma Recta" or "Cyma Reversa" cornice retaining cast-iron octagonal or ogee hoppers and downpipes. Part repointed tuck pointed coursed or snecked limestone walls with drag edged dragged cut-limestone quoins to corners including drag edged dragged cut-limestone quoins to corners (breakfront) supporting "Cyma Recta" or "Cyma Reversa" pediment framing cast-iron clock face in dragged cut-limestone surround. Series of three segmental-headed central carriageways with dragged cut-limestone block-and-start archivolts centred on drag edged dragged cut-limestone keystones framing glazed timber boarded double doors having overlights. Square-headed window openings (first floor) with dragged cut-limestone surrounds framing timber pivot fittings having square glazing bars. Square-headed central door openings with dragged cut-limestone block-and-start surrounds framing glazed timber panelled doors having overlights. Square-headed window openings with drag edged dragged cut-limestone sills, and dragged cut-limestone block-and-start surrounds (ground floor) or dragged cut-limestone surrounds (first floor) framing six-over-six (ground floor) or three-over-three (first floor) timber sash windows. Interior including (ground floor): central coach houses; groin vaulted ceilings on dragged limestone ashlar engaged Tuscan columns on plinths. Set in landscaped grounds shared with Westport House with rendered piers to courtyard having "Cyma Recta"- or "Cyma Reversa"-detailed capping.

Appraisal

A stable complex erected to a design attributed to Richard Castle (d. 1751) contributing positively to the group and setting values of the Westport House estate with the architectural value of the composition confirmed by such attributes as the symmetrical plan form centred on a Classically-detailed breakfront; the construction in a rough cut limestone offset by sheer dressings demonstrating good quality workmanship; the diminishing in scale of the openings on each floor producing a graduated visual impression; and the "cupola"-topped pediment embellishing the roofline: meanwhile, aspects of the composition clearly illustrate the near-total reconstruction of the stable complex following a fire (1864). Having been reasonably well maintained, the elementary form and massing survive intact together with substantial quantities of the historic or original fabric, both to the exterior and to the interior where groin vaulted ceilings highlight the engineering or technical dexterity of a stable complex making a pleasing visual statement in a sylvan setting.
 
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