Categories of Special Interest
In Use As
1880 - 1885
Corner-sited four-storey commercial building with dormer attic, built c. 1881, having canted corner bay, three-bay south elevation to Wicklow Street and two-bay to Grafton Street. In retail use, with offices over. Pitched roof, hipped to east end, with central gabled attic dormers to each elevation flanked by red brick parapet with dressed limestone coping. Concealed rainwater goods. Machine-made red brick walling, laid in Flemish bond, with raised stringcourses between floors and strip quoins to corners, rising to moulded brick eaves course, surmounted by projecting limestone (possibly granite) crown cornice, extending across neighbouring building to north. Square-headed window openings to first floor and segmental-headed to floors above, having raised brick block-and-start surrounds, bowtelll-moulded reveals, hood-cornices over first and second floor openings and spherical finials over limestone keys to first and third floors. Moulded limestone sills to second floor openings, and flush sills to third floor. Paired openings to shaped-gable attic dormers, having stepped reveals and continuous hood-mouldings, surmounted by swagged and panelled limestone frieze with matching copings and triangular pediments, flanked by spherical finial stops. Keyed oculus to corner bay with round pediment to parapet, topped by spherical finial. Windows are one-over-one pane timber sliding sash with ogee horns. Wraparound shopfront to ground floor, extending across Nos. 2-3 Wicklow Street and Nos. 97-99 Grafton Street, having continuous moulded fascia with raised lettering 'Weir and Sons/Silversmiths' to south, 'Estd. 1869' inset to southeast corner, 'Weir & Sons 96' to east, all surmounted by moulded modillioned cornice (curved to southeast corner), topped with decorative iron railings, raked to southeast and featuring 'Weir'. Timber display windows with overlights, curved to south and southeast elevations, subdivided by timber colonnettes (some faced with steel pieces) over polished black granite stall-riser. Early to mid-twentieth-century awning arms retained, extending over fascia. Recessed entrance porch to east bay of south elevation, flanked by convex curved display windows and having curved mirror to ceiling and mosaic paving to porch with contrasting granite trim 'Weir & Sons’. Square-headed door opening with timber and bevelled glass door, having brass handles and decorative frosted glass to lower section with lettering 'Weir & Son Manufacturing Silversmiths Jewellery/Showroom Grafton St'. Door set within moulded timber frame having carved timber swan's-neck pediment, and multiple-pane timber overlight with keyed oculus to centre set in shouldered timber architrave. Well-preserved interior, including fine plasterwork ceilings, frosted mirrors and freestanding oval display cabinets of c. 1935.
The stretch of Grafton Street between Wicklow Street and Suffolk Street was almost entirely rebuilt about 1881 to the designs of W.M. Mitchell, forming a cohesive commercial block at Nos. 96-100 and 105-6. Weir & Sons, jewellers, moved into the premises (Nos. 96) about 1905, and the ornate timber doors from their former premises were relocated to the principal entrance on the Wicklow Street (south) elevation. Alterations during this time were carried out to the designs of Batchelor & Hicks. Nos. 97-99 was replaced in the 1930s by George L. O’Connor's Maskora Turkish Baths, but this Art Deco design is successfully bookended by Mitchell's remaining blocks. No. 96 is well maintained and effectively addresses its prominent corner site. The group is linked by a good wraparound shopfront. The interior of No. 96 contains a number of notable features, including oval freestanding display cases of about 1935 by Pollard & Co. of London.