Lissadell House and Gardens, Sligo, Ireland
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LISSADELL HOUSE AND GARDENS
"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 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 was 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 did 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.
This was our vision for Lissadell. Our vision is now at an end.
Edward Walsh, Constance Cassidy and family
"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 2009 Guide.
Butterflies and bees
Speckled wood butterfly, ladybird & bumble bee photographed by Edward (age 10)
A lovely visitor, the Red Admiral
Butterflies and moths include the couded yellow, the pearl-bordered fritillary, the hummingbird hawk moth, the tiger moth, the small tortoiseshell, the painted lady, the small white (mating), the peacock, the green veined white, the cabbage white, the speckled wood, the small copper and the common blue (engaged in a mating dance); and a rather battered scarce swallowtail.
The walled Alpine Garden at Lissadell, and the crevice garden
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
RESTORATION WORK AT LISSADELL: A PICTORIAL RECORD
click on the image below
Narcissus Acme (Poeticus) at Lissadell in 1906, and Narcissi today
Lissadell House & David Langford receive top award for heritage potatoes
Lisadell House in Sligo is one of five winners to receive a top award for keeping Ireland’s traditional culinary heritage alive. The EirGrid Euro-Toques Food Awards aknowlegde food producers or individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to Irish food.
Euro-Torques Award Winners photographed by Robbie Reynold
From left: Margaret Delaney from Glenfin Free Range Duck Eggs; Isobel Cassidy from Lissadell; Bobby O'Flynn from O'Flynn Meats; Brenda O'Riordan from Love Fish and Michelle Costello from Cuinneog Butter.
There were five winners, selected by the Irish branch of the European Community of Chefs and Cooks, including Lissadell House and David Langford in Sligo for preserving and reviving many traditional varieties of potatoes, including rare and heritage potatoes. Click on Kitchen Garden above for more information about our heritage potatoes.
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 paintings of AE (George Russell) and our natural history collection.
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