Main Record - County Westmeath
|Hilltown House, County Westmeath
|Date||1770 - 1800|
|Categories of Special Interest||ARCHITECTURAL ARTISTIC|
|Original Use||country house|
|In Use As||country house|| |
Detached three-bay three-storey over basement Palladian country house, built c.1780. Shallow hipped roof behind raised parapet with moulded cornice and blocking course. Two central ashlar limestone chimneystacks with moulded limestone cornices. Lime roughcast rendered facade with projecting chamfered limestone string course at ground floor level. Square-headed window openings with cut stone sills and timber sliding sash windows, which diminish in size towards eaves. Central cut limestone tripartite Doric doorcase having timber panelled door flanked by sidelights with fanlight over having intersecting tracery. Square-headed tripartite window over doorcase to first floor with cut stone Doric surround and a Diocletian window over to the centre of the second floor. Set back from road in extensive mature grounds with complex outbuildings (15400316) and the remains of a tower house to the rear (north) and entrance gates to the south. Located to the northeast of Castlepollard close to the border with Co. Meath.
A substantial and well-balanced country house, which is interesting as a late example of the Palladian style in Co. Westmeath. It retains its early form, fabric and character. The plain front façade is enlivened by the central arrangement of a tripartite doorcase having a tripartite window over and a Diocletian window above to the second floor. This central arrangement is a typical feature of Irish Palladian architecture, particularly in the north midlands, and can be seen at nearby Newpass House, near Rathowen (15400501) amongst other examples. Hilltown House is of a rather stocky and squat appearance and may represent the Palladian remodelling of an earlier house. Indeed, to the rear can be found the remains of a tower house (WM003-027---), c.1550, and a number of other structures of early appearance, and this suggests a long term continuous occupation at Hilltown. Hilltown House occupies a prominent position in the landscape with good views to the south and forms the centrepiece of an interesting group of related structures with the buildings to the rear (15400316) and the gates (15400317). Hilltown House was the home of a W. Webb in 1837 (Lewis).
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