Drumgooland House

Downpatrick,

Brief Description

Originally a pre-1830 garden with a later planting scheme of c1904. Mill pond (embanked) and mill race treated as an ornamental pond/lake with cascade. Retains original planting and boundary.

Terrain

Cambisols, Gala group - Wacke, 129-134ft above sea level. Garden chiefly laid in lawn and plantation, sloping southwards towards mill pond, which is embanked.

Detailed Description

Pre-1830 garden with embanked mill pond and mill race, formed the garden to the house of the local mill owner. Pre-1830 house demolished and rebuilt in 1903-1904 to designs by W J Fennell, Architect. Garden planting was augmented around the same period. Originally had a kitchen garden to the south west of the site and large glasshouses to the south east, both now gone.

Features

Soil Type

Cambisols

Underlying Geology

Gala Group - Wacke

  • Pond
  • Mill pond and mill race
  • Description: In existence by 1820s
  • Boundary Wall
  • Stone boundary wall
  • Description: Between garden and stable yard (originally part of walled garden boundary) c1832-1846
  • Domestic House
  • Small stone terrace of servants' cottages
  • Description: Slate roofs c 1832-1846 (ruins)
  • Gate
  • Entrance gates
  • Description: To front of house and garden c1904
  • Tomb
  • Replica of Celtic dolmen
  • Description: Constructed from 3 large stones. Date unknown but possibly c1904
History

Historical Use

Detailed History

c1780-1832 First topographical evidence of a house on the site, together with gardens, plantation, lake and mill pond.

c1832-1846 Garden planting augmented, large walled kitchen gardens laid out

c1864-1904 Kitchen gardens reduced in size to allow for expansion of stable yard

1904-1905 Main house is rebuilt. Gardens updated with subtropical planting, new entrance gates etc. It is possible the ornamental dolmen was constructed at this time as W J Fennell who rebuilt the house was a keen archaeologist and was restoring the Celtic high cross in Downpatrick around the same period. The estate originally contained several features identified as Celtic raths on the C19th OS maps, and the dolmen may be a reference to this. As it sits on an artificially constructed C18th embankment it cannot pre-date the C18th, and it seems likely that it was constructed c1904 when the new planting was being established.

c1980 The range of glasshouses to the east of the house are demolished, presumably due to disrepair.