A home that’s full of char­ac­ter

One of the most recog­nised build­ings on the Sheep’s Head penin­sula could be yours, says Tommy Barker

Irish Examiner - Property & Interiors - - Property| -

LEFT over from a golden age, and al­ways ap­pre­ci­ated and minded for 175 years and more, is the dis­tinc­tive Ross­more Lodge, a pe­riod gem on the Sheep’s Head penin­sula be­tween Dur­rus and Ahak­ista.

Look­ing for all the world like a slightly star­tled and an­i­mated face, with eyes pop­ping open thanks to the dec­o­ra­tive brick­work picked out in paint against the white walls like a royal blue mas­cara, this pic­ture post­card home was built around1840by­lord­ban­don as a gen­tle­man’s house for his land agent, says Bantry es­tate agent Denis Har­ring­ton.

He has listed Ross­more Lodge for its cur­rent, care­ful own­ers of the past 11 years or so, and he says it’s ab­so­lutely charm­ing, ab­so­lutely unique and read­ily iden­ti­fi­able.

“In fact, along with St James Church (1792), it’s prob­a­bly the most Ross­more, Dur­rus, West Cork €485,000

Size: 210 sq m (2,240 sq ft) Bed­rooms: 3 Bath­rooms: 3

BER: Pend­ing recog­nised and ad­mired build­ing on the penin­sula, and to my mem­ory has al­ways been a full-time home.”

Stone-built — and de­cep­tively large as it is dou­ble roofed, two-storeys high and has a Vic­to­rian-styled con­ser­va­tory to the side also for ex­cep­tional views — it has over 2,200 sq ft of im­mac­u­late and char­ac­ter­ful space within.

And, not only is it on grounds of close to one acre, it’s within a ball kick of the sea, notes Denis Har­ring­ton. That’s some­thing the lo­cal GAA club Muin­tir Bháire might envy, as it has waited decades for its own pitch for the com­bined catch­ment of Ahak­ista, Dur­rus and Kil­cro­hane: how­ever, there’s now no fear of a pitch in­va­sion at Ross­more Lodge, as the foot­ball club has started work on a 17-acre fa­cil­ity the other side.

Ross­more Lodge’s own “pitch” on the penin­sula is quite per­fect, as the sell­ing agent says it’s fac­ing south, on warm and fer­tile land and he notes that farmers in this stretch would be known for early pro­duce, early lambs and year­lings.

In ad­di­tion, its lo­ca­tion is favourable, half­way be­tween Dur­rus and Ahak­ista piers and moor­ings for sea­far­ers. Lo­cal Ahak­ista res­i­dent Gra­ham Nor­ton is usu­ally the star of the show at the an­nual Ahak­ista re­gatta, an event he de­scribed as “ba­si­cally a piss up, with a tan­noy,” at the 2015 West Cork Lit­er­ary Fes­ti­val in Bantry. Back then, in an in­ter­view with Bishop Paul Colton, Nor­ton quipped that he should apol­o­gise to the real writ­ers there: “I do feel that my ap­pear­ing at a lit­er­ary fes­ti­val is one of the Signs of the Apoc­a­lypse.”

He’ll have to apol­o­gise all over again this sum­mer, when he at­tends in Bantry once more, hav­ing failed to dis­close he was work­ing on a novel. His re­cent book, Hold­ing, set in a fic­tional West Cork vil­lage, has topped the Ir­ish book­selling lists for months and months... like, sooorry, you other writ­ers, Apoc­a­lypse Now.

Back at the “real” Ross­more Lodge, a sign of its gen­try roots is the fact is has two stair­cases, main and back stairs for staff, and rooms in­clude a stone floored sit­ting room and hall, sun/evening room, kitchen with Aga and Belfast sink, util­ity, kitch­enette and guest WC with shower.

Up over­head are three bed­rooms un­der slop­ing wood-sheet­ed­ceil­ings,anda main car­peted bath­room with en­closed cast iron roll top bath and bidet.

VERDICT: Spe­cial

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