County Westmeath - Thu Jan 18 01:49:38 GMT 2018

Main Record - County Westmeath

St. Mary's Hospital, Longford Road, Mullingar, County Westmeath
15309018
General view from the east.
Reg. No.15309018
Date1840 - 1845
Previous NameMullingar Union Workhouse
TownlandROBINSTOWN
CountyCounty Westmeath
Coordinates243042, 254149
Categories of Special InterestARCHITECTURAL HISTORICAL SOCIAL
RatingRegional
Original Useworkhouse
In Use Ashospital/infirmary
 
Description
Former union workhouse complex on H-shaped plan, built c.1841, comprising a thirteen-bay two-storey range (having attic storey with dormers to roof) with three-storey double gable-fronted end blocks to the southwest and northeast. Further two and three-storey blocks, one containing a chapel, and detached buildings to the rear, some derelict. Now in use as a hospital. Pitched natural slate roofs with overhanging eaves, timber bargeboards to gable-fronted sections and brick chimneystacks. Raised limestone verges to gable ends of three-storey blocks. Constructed of coursed limestone rubble over cut stone plinth with brick or cut stone dressings to the openings. Square-headed window openings with a number of surviving sash windows but mostly with replacement windows. Tripartite timber sash windows to gable-fronted three-storey blocks. Square-headed door openings now mostly having replacement doors. Located to the rear (northwest) of the former workhouse administration block (15309008) and to the north of Mullingar. Former workhouse graveyard to the northeast (15309019).

Appraisal

The remains of a large-scale former union workhouse complex, built by the Poor Law Commission. The designs for this complex were prepared by George Wilkinson (1814-90). Substantial proportions of this complex survive intact making it one of the best surviving examples of its type in Ireland. It is well-built in a subdued Tudor Gothic style and retains much of its early form and fabric despite alterations for use as a hospital. Workhouses are historically linked with the Great Famine (1845-1849) and are important physical reminders of this traumatic period in Irish history. This structure (and ancillary buildings) forms part of a largely intact former Union Workhouse complex with the former workhouse administration block to the southeast (15309008) and the graveyard to the northeast (15309019) and is an important element of the architectural heritage of Westmeath. Prominently sited, this complex is an imposing element in the townscape to the north side of Mullingar.
 
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