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We are very pleased to acknowledge the contribution of our sponsors and donors to the cost of implementing the Conservation Plan for the Rothe House property.

The Garden project was supported by Failte Ireland, Kilkenny Borough Council and Kilkenny Civic Trust. The assistance of the Heritage Council in the planning process, and in many other ways, was considerable, and we would also wish to acknowledge the support of Kilkenny County Council, the Office of Public Works and the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government.

The members of Kilkenny Archaeological Society have been very generous with voluntary pledges, and many members of the general public who learned about the Plan have supported it with contributions.

As we embark on the final phase of the Conservation Plan, we are continuing our fundraising efforts. While the project is supported by Failte Ireland (under the NDP 2007-2013), and the Councils of Kilkenny City and County, there is still a substantial gap in the funding to be raised. We have launched a new fundraising campaign where we invite you to contribute by means of Standing Order with your bank. A Standing Order form is available here. As Rothe House Trust Limited is a Charitable Trust, your contributions are eligible for tax relief.

Simply complete the Standing Order, and return it to us by post or by email.  We will look after the rest! We thank you in advance for your support.

Genealogy – New National On-line Service:

RHT provides the genealogy service for Kilkenny City and County. We have recently joined with other counties in an on-line service for users, using a central web-site which will be a one-stop shop for all the available Irish genealogical records on the island of Ireland. This is an initiative of the Irish Family History Foundation, and the site contains 8.6 million birth, baptismal, marriage and death records from the 1600s to the 1900s. The cost of building the database and maintaining the service means that charges will apply to users.  The site is at

Conservation Plan: Next Step – The House

Now that the Garden Re-creation is complete, and has been formally opened by the President of Ireland, the next step is the re-presentation of the House in accordance with the Conservation Plan. The first  stage of this entails conservation work on the fabric of the House to enable the interpretive plan for the property to be implemented. This will include replacement of staircase, dampness protection in basement, work on windows and doors, plasterwork and ceiling repairs,  chimney and roof work, improvement of guttering and drainage, and lift installation. A lot of this work is necessitated by obligations in relation to (a) access for all, and (b) Health & Safety requirements.

Announcement of Grant:  We were very pleased recently to be notified by the Dept. of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government that our project here has been included by the Minister in the list of Heritage Properties to benefit from Government grants this year, in our case €200,000, which will allow us to put these works in hand. The full cost estimate is €406,500, so we have a big gap to bridge! 

Re-location within the House: The Plan entails much re-arrangement of activities, to enable us to show off the House to its best for visitors. The Library and the Fás project will move to the Third House, which is now available as the Heritage Council has moved to its new location in Church Lane. We will try to have all the major changes carried out during the slack period for visitors, as much of the House will have to be closed for a time. So, the aim is to have the transfers to the Third House carried out this coming winter, and the re-presentation completed in the winter of 2009-10.

Funding:  We continue to rely heavily on public funding for the cost of the Plan – approx. €3m – but all grant systems operate on a percentage basis, which means we need to be able to source considerable sponsorship from private sources. For this we rely on our own KAS members, our stakeholders in the Trust, and private and corporate donations. So far this has gone well. but now needs to be stepped up as we enter the period of our heaviest investment. Watch this space! 

Sponsor a Tree in the Rothe Garden!

Rothe House Trust launched a new Fundraising Campaign just before Christmas, to help with the cost of the Garden Restoration project. You can choose one of the following items to sponsor and in return we will assign a plaque to the item to commemorate you, or someone else of your choosing.

Benches:Handmade wooden benches specially designed for comfort and ease of use. €1,000 each

Oak Trees: Semi mature clipped oak trees 2 metres tall. €600 each

Apple Trees: All old Irish apple varieties, planted in the upper garden. €40 each.

Roses and Shrubs: A wide variety of roses and shubs throughout the garden. €25 each.

Bay Trees: 6 bay trees planted in pots in the lower garden. €200 each.

Cobbles: limestone cobbles to be set in the entranceway at New Building Lane. €100 each.

Simply contact 056 7722893 or email for more information on how to take part.

This is your opportunity to support the Kilkenny Archaeological Society and Rothe House Trust in our ambitious project to restore the Garden.

Conservation Plan

Rothe House & Garden will be the flagship of Kilkenny’s heritage and tourist industry when the Renaissance project is completed by Easter of 2011, and all conservation works finished. This will complete the restoration and the presentation of one of Ireland’ treasures for present and future generations.

The Rothe House Conservation Plan was the first conservation plan to be commissioned in Ireland by the Heritage Council of Ireland on behalf of the Kilkenny Archaeological Society in 2002, and its aim was to secure, conserve, and restore the historic property and gardens for future generations to enjoy and use.  The Conservation Plan had four major recommendations and to date three of these recommendations have been completed: they are as follows

1.The formation of a professional Management Company (Rothe House Trust Ltd. was formed in 2004 and has full Charitable status.)

2.  The reconstruction of the Burgage Garden to the rear of the property. (opened in April 2008, and the gardens have won the Local and National Landscape awards in the 2008 Tidy Towns Awards)

.3The Structural Conservation and Maintenance of the buildings. (Works were completed in November 2008)

4.The re-presentation of the site as an exemplar of life in 17th century Kilkenny and Ireland. This is the Renaissance Project, and work commenced on 15th March.  Duggan Lynch & Co were the local contractors appointed to re-fit the Third House to provide for new library facilities, a new training centre for the FAS Training Project, and a Coffee Shop on the ground floor. Phase One has been completed and the Library and the Trainee centre have been relocated.

Contract Signing

Phase two begins in March 2012, and will involve the closure of Rothe House to the public for some months.  This is the refurbishment of the First and Second Houses to install a new exhibition space, with a circular route through the two houses. This new exhibition space will tell the story of Rothe House itself, its construction between 1594 and 1610, the family who built it and lived in it, and their impact on the social and political life of Kilkenny in the 17th century.

The project is being supported by Failte Ireland under the NDP 2007-2013, the Councils of the City and County of Kilkenny and private donations. It is a major conservation and presentation project coming to Kilkenny in these difficult times, which will see substantial investment in the Heritage of the County. The project is estimated to cost €3.1 million.

The project design will provide full accessibility for all to Rothe House and Garden, and when complete will prove to be a major tourist attraction and historical and genealogical research facility for Kilkenny and the South East of Ireland.

We buried our time capsule!

Time Capsule

We had a great day last Saturday, 6th October, when we buried our time capsule in the garden at Rothe House.  Mayor Marie Fitzpatrick attended, and the occasion was presided over by Dr. Maire Downey, President of the Kilkenny Archaeological Society.  The time capsule was actually a beer keg given by Diageo Brewery of Parliament Street. It was made airtight, and pressure tested, before the articles were put in. These included: newspapers, items of clothing, food tins and most importantly of all, a Kilkenny hurling jersey! The capsule was buried deep in the Orchard, and was covered in cement, so that it won’t rise to the surface any time soon. Hopefully it will be uncovered in 200 years time by future archaeologists, and it will give them a snapshot of life in Kilkenny in 2007.

The capsule has been registered with the Time Capsule Society which records all such events in Ireland and Britain. 


Please note that due to staff training Rothe House & Garden will not be open between the hours of 10.30am and 2pm on Tuesday March 6th.  We will be open between 2pm and 4.30pm however.  We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Welcome to Rothe House & Garden

Nestled in the centre of Ireland’s Medieval Mile, Rothe House and Garden is one of Kilkenny’s hidden gems. A visit is high on the list of things to do in the Marble City. Built between 1594 and 1610 this was the home of the renowned merchant, landowner and Mayor of Kilkenny City, John Rothe Fitz Piers, his wife Rose Archer, and their eleven children.

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Beat the queues, book your tickets in advance online. Group rates available.

Genealogy Services


Discover your family’s history and research your ancestors at Rothe House & Garden.

Venue Hire

Venue Hire

From weddings and private receptions to talks and performances, talk to us about booking a truly unique venue in Rothe House & Garden.

Contact Us

Rothe House and Garden
Parliament Street
R95 P89C

Telephone: +353 56 7722893



Parliament Street, Kilkenny. On Ireland’s Medieval Mile between St. Canice’s Cathedral and Kilkenny Castle – just five minutes’ walk from each and right across the street from the Smithwick’s Experience.





Things to do/Places to visit


With over 200,000 family history parish and civil records, Rothe House is the genealogical research centre in Kilkenny city and county. For those with Kilkenny ancestry, this is the place to start your search, or even add to your existing knowledge.

Family history research at Rothe House & Garden, Kilkenny

Family history research at Rothe House & Garden, Kilkenny

It’s simple to use

  • To begin with, email in as much detail as you can, your request to
  • Our professional genealogist, Mary Flood, will contact you by email to advise if there are records available to help you in your search, and the cost of this.
  • You can then pay using our secure PayPal system.
  • The record(s) will then be forwarded to you.

The fee to search for and provide a single record is €50.  For an assessment of all records available by our genealogist, there is a fee of €100.  Your query will be dealt with as quickly as possible, but this could take up to four weeks.

If you would like to undertake research yourself, then you can log onto where Kilkenny’s records, together with a further almost 20 million records nationwide, are available online.

You can also meet with Mary, who is available on  Tuesdays by prior appointment only.  Please email when you know when you will be visiting Kilkenny and she’ll be happy to meet with you to help you progress with your family history research.

Pay Your Genealogy Search Online

If you have been advised by a member of staff to pay online, or you would like to order a genealogical search online, please choose from a full search or initial search below. You will be directed to PayPal to complete your payment to Rothe House. Please use PayPal’s instruction form to outline the requirements for your search. If in doubt, please contact us at Rothe House.