Categories of Special Interest
Teelin Coastguard Station
In Use As
1860 - 1880
Detached gable-fronted single-bay single-storey former coastguard boathouse, built 1871, originally associated with Teelin Coastguard Station (now ruinous and not in survey). Now in use as a private boathouse. Pitched corrugated metal roof. Roughcast rendered finish over rubble stone construction with rock-faced ashlar sandstone block-and-start quoins to the corners of the front elevation (north) with dressed margins. Single segmental-headed window opening to the centre of each side elevation (east and west) having rock-faced ashlar sandstone block-and-start surrounds with dressed margins, cut stone sills; openings now blocked. Segmental-headed carriage-arch to the front elevation (north) having rock-faced ashlar sandstone block-and-start surrounds with dressed margins, and with replacement timber double-doors. Set back from road adjacent to Teelin Pier, and to the south-west of Cill Charta/Kilcar. Remains of associated former coastguard station to the south-west (not in survey); associated slipway to the north having rubble stone construction and with cobbled decked. Former icehouse adjacent to the west.
This simple former coastguard station retains much of its early character and form despite some recent alterations. The good-quality rock-faced block-and-start surrounds to the openings and the quoins to the corners of the front elevation is a typical feature of many late Victorian wide-scale building projects in Ireland (railways, coastguards, Board of Works bridges etc.) and help lend this small-scale building a robust architectural character. The original slate covering to the roof (Lawrence photograph c. 1900) has been removed in recent years but could be re-instated, which would add to the visual appeal of this building. This structure was originally built to house the coastguard boat(s) associated with the former Teelin Coastguard Station, the ruins of which survive adjacent to the south-west, which was built in 1871 and replaced an earlier coastguard station to site that was apparently in existence in the early 1820s. This boathouse was probably built to designs by designs by Enoch Trevor Owen (c. 1833 – 1881) who was probably responsible for the rebuilding of the coastguard station itself. Owen was an English architect working for the Board of Works in Ireland from c. 1860. Owen designed upwards of thirty coastguard stations in Ireland, mainly during the 1860s and early 1870s, including nine in County Donegal. The adjacent coastguard station was apparently attacked by the IRA in 1920, resulting in the killing of George Kennington, a coastguard stationed here. A number of local people were subsequently arrested and, in retaliation, the IRA later burned the station in 1923. This simple boathouse, which is still in use, is a modest addition to the built heritage and maritime heritage of the Teelin and Cill Charta/Kilcar area. The simple but well-built associated former slipway adjacent to the north adds significantly to the setting and context.