Stunning glasshouses at Ardgillan reopen to the publicPadraig Conlon 24 May 2022
To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the restored Ardgillan Castle being opened to the public, Fingal County Council has welcomed a stunning range of four newly restored heritage glasshouses which help form an important addition to the park and gardens in Ardgillan Demesne.
Originally located at the Jameson Estate in Seamount, Malahide, the glasshouses were carefully dismantled by Council staff after the current owners of the Jameson Estate, the Treacy Family donated the structures to the Council in the early 1990s.
Two of the glasshouses “The Large Conservatory” and “The Propagation House” located in the Walled Garden date from the 1880s were designed and constructed by the famous Scottish Glasshouse Company Mackenzie and Moncur.
The company is still in existence today which is a testament to the quality of their products.
The local team at Ardgillan undertook the original reconstruction of the large Conservatory in the formal rose garden to replace a structure identified on early ordnance survey maps of the garden.
The team also constructed two smaller glasshouses in the MacKenzie Moncur style in the corners of the walled garden.
These – along with the Large Conservatory and the very rare Propagation House (which was kept in storage for almost 30 years) – have now been completely restored and now incorporate state of the art electrical fittings and provision for irrigation.
Opening the restored glasshouses, Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Seána Ó Rodaigh, said: “We have real cause for celebration with the opening of these restored glasshouses.
“They really are a spectacular feature to add to one of the most beautiful destinations in Fingal.
“I’d like to thank everyone who was involved in this project, which took a great deal of collaboration across many different departments within the Council as well as getting the guidance from consultants and specialists to deliver such a stunning addition that will help bring more people locally, nationally and from overseas to experience what’s on offer.”
Chief Executive of Fingal County Council, AnnMarie Farrelly, said: “We’re very lucky here in Fingal to have such a very special amenity like Ardgillan Castle and Gardens. The restored glasshouses now in place really add to the experience for anybody coming to enjoy the wonderful park and take in the stunning views of the coast.”
Specialist consultants de Blacam and Meagher Architects helped steer the project through planning, procurement and construction. The main contractors Oldstone Conservation undertook the major works with input from specialist contractors Lambstonge who were responsible for the joinery and metal work which was such an important part of the restoration project.
The restored glasshouses add greatly to the widely acknowledged reputation of the gardens for horticultural and botanical excellence, with the extensive plant collection benefiting local park users and visitors.