Lissadell House and Gardens, Sligo, Ireland
LISSADELL HOUSE AND GARDENS
Except for specially arranged pre-boked tour groups
Henry Wymbs visits the North West for BBC Radio Oxford. Henry's programme was broadcast on Sunday 12th October 2014. His Lissadell interview includes W. B. Yeats' own recitation of "The Lake Island of Innisfree".
Georgina Campbell's Ireland Guide: "Re-opened in 2014 following a five year closure, Lissadell is the brightest historical and cultural gem of the north-west and a must-see destination for anyone visiting Sligo or planning a trip along the Wild Atlantic Way". Georgina Campbell's Ireland 2014
"That old grey mansion": W. B. Yeats
The Lissadell Estate is the home of Edward Walsh, his wife Constance Cassidy and their seven children. Writing about Lissadell for the Sunday Times forty-four years ago the BBC's Anne Robinson ('The Weakest Link') observed that "the garden is overgrown, the greenhouses are shattered and empty, the stables beyond repair, the roof of the main block leaks badly and the paintings show patches of mildew". After 70 years of neglect an intensive programme of restoration - without any public funding - has taken place in the House, Gardens, Stable Block and grounds since 2004 and Lissadell is once again a place of beauty. Click here for the text of Anne Robinson's article. No grants of any kind were made in respect of any part of the restoration, either for the house, the gardens or any part of the grounds. Every penny spent was earned by us.
OUR VISION is to transform the estate into a flagship for tourism in Sligo and the North West, whilst providing a secure environment for our children and for our visitors. We do not wish to exploit Lissadell commercially but to restore the house and gardens to their former glory, make Lissadell self-sustaining and protect this crucible of Ireland's historic and literary heritage.
Edward Walsh, Constance Cassidy and family
Lissadell is our home, and we welcome you, our visitors, into our home. Like any home in Ireland we have photographs of our children in the house. Lissadell has reopened for a 2014 season because of the persuasion of our children. Without the children there would be no 2014 season, and no visitors
The Parliamentary Gazetter of 1846: "This is a house for the connoisseur. It responds to the romance of its setting, not with Gothick drama, but with Attic reserve. ... With consistent economy the local limestone is worked into spare, exact exteriors, and polished to articulate severely the interiors of the finest Greek-revival country house in Ireland".
"It’s a wonderful place – if you have to choose just one visitor attraction in Ireland to visit, make it Lissadell. And allow plenty of time": Georgina Campbell's Ireland Guide.
Kathy Sheridan, Brian Farrell & Bryan O'Brien visit Lissadell
Bryan O'Brien videoing in the Bow Room; Kathy Sheridan & Brian Farrell in the Tea Rooms
Lissadell is famous as the childhood home of Constance Markievicz, her sister Eva Gore Booth and her brother Josslyn Gore Booth. Constance was one of the leaders of the 1916 Rising, and was the first woman to be elected to Dail Eireann, where she served as Minister for Labour (thus becoming the first woman minister in a modern European democracy), and was also the first woman to be elected to the House of Commons at Westminster, London (where she declined to take her seat). Eva was a poet of distinction and an active suffragist, clashing with the young Winston Churchill over barmaids' rights in 1908. Josslyn created at Lissadell one of the premier horticultural estates in Europe. This horticultural enterprise has now been recreated at Lissadell. Sligo born poet W. B. Yeats was friendly with the Gore Booth sisters and stayed at Lissadell in 1893 and 1894. He immortalised Lissadell and the Gore Booth sisters in his poetry:
The light of evening, Lissadell
Many a time I think to seek
W. B. Yeats
The Alpine Garden
The Lissadell Tearooms
Red currants from the Kitchen Garden at Lissadell
Lissadell welcomed An Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD to Lissadell in June 2014
An Taoiseach takes afternoon tea (prepared by Tim Bracken) in the Ante Room at Lissadell
For a pictorial record of An Taoiseach's visit to Lissadell, click on this link: Visit by An Taoiseach Enda Kenny June 2014
RESTORATION WORK AT LISSADELL: A PICTORIAL RECORD
click on the image below
Roses, Lavender, Nepeta, Pumpkins, Sunflowers, Apples, Strawberries
EXHIBITIONS AT LISSADELL
THE YEATS GALLERY
POET, NOVELIST, SINGER, SONGWRITER
On 01 August 2010
The new exhibition in the Yeats Gallery displays a definitive collection of first edition and rare books, original letters, paintings, drawings, photographs and ephemera focussing on the life and works of the poet William Butler Yeats, his brother the artist Jack, his father the portrait painter John; the artistic works of his sisters Lily and Lolly at the Cuala Press; and the works of thier literary and artistic contemporaries. The collection is both comprehensive and unique, and has been painstakingly assembled over the past five years. For more information click on YEATS above.
Leonard Cohen at the Yeats Gallery on 01 August, 2010
EXHIBITIONS at Lissadell include the Constance Markievicz Exhibition opened by An Taoiseach in March 2007, an exhibition of the World War 1 paintings of Jean Jacques Bellecour.
Images of W. B. Yeats, Countess Markievicz and AE (George Russell) on display at Lissadell
LEONARD COHEN CONCERT
LISSADELL - NEXT TO NATURE
Lissadell is a family home.
Access to the House, Gardens or any part of the grounds is by permission only.
Ben Bulben, summer and winter, viewed from Lissadell (below)
Photographs copyright Pamela Cassidy, Lissadell. No reproduction without express, written, permission