Every Thursday evening, from 25th June to 27th August, visitors to Kilkenny had an opportunity to take a guided tour of Rothe House & Garden in the company of John Rothe Fitzpiers, and his wife Rose Archer, who built Rothe House between 1594 and 1610.Â They were takenÂ on a journey through the 400 year old story of Rothe House & Garden.Â Visitors were very complimentary about the tour, and spoke of a greater understanding of the family who lived in Rothe House in the early 17th century.
1907 GreatÂ Exhibition in Herbert Park, DublinÂ
In 1907, a Great Exhibition was held in Dublin.Â It was centered on Herbert Park in Donnybrook, which was in fact created particularly for this event.Â It was a huge exhibition, and over 2.5 million people saw it during the four months it was in place.Â The Chairman of the Organising Committee was theÂ Marquess of Ormonde, so there is an interesting Kilkenny connection. Â 100 years later, the RDS commissioned a Commemorative Exhibition.Â This was co-curated by Brian Siggins of the Old Dublin Society and John Holohan.Â The RDS have kindly lent the exhibition to Rothe House, and it will be on show during the month of September, in the ground floor of the Third House.
The Exhibition is part of the overall tour of the House & Garden. Â Â
Global Lunch Box returns
The Global Lunch box is a series of lunch time talks and workshops exploring the global issues of peak oil,
climate change and economic uncertainty with a focus on how these challanges can be met through local positive solutions.
Fridays, Rothe House, High St., 1pm, Ð„5 (price includes entry to gardens), Tea & coffee extra.Â
Friday 8th May
WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?Â Â Â ——————————————————————————————————– The future is not what we thought it would be. In tackling climate change, and especially peak oil, we need to produce and consume closer to home. This will be a big change for society but could lead to a revival in the local economy and stronger communities.
This final lunchbox will explore where we go from here.
Booking not essential.
From Monday 12th January, entry to the Rothe Family Garden has been altered, and is now through the House on Parliament Street. The gates at New Building Lane have been closed.
â€˜It was always intended that access to the House and Garden would be integrated and that the Garden would be entered in the same way that the Rothe Family would have doneâ€™, says RÃ³isÃn McQuillan, Manager of Rothe House.Â â€˜Now that the conservation work on the Courtyards and House has been completed, it is appropriate to allow visitors to the House and Garden to enter through the House.â€™In line with the conditions of the FÃ¡ilte Ireland grant which funded a large part of the reconstruction works, there will be a nominal charge to visit the Garden.Â It is now possible to visit the House and Garden together, or just the Garden on its own.Â
Admission charges are as follows:
House & Garden:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Adults: â‚¬5.00Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Concessions:Â â‚¬4.00
Garden Only:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Adults: â‚¬2.00Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Concessions: â‚¬1.00
Members of Kilkenny Archaeological Society can avail of the usual free admission. There will also be an annual ticket available for â‚¬10 which will allow unrestricted access to the Garden only (conditions will apply).Â The annual ticket is being introduced to encourage local people to use the Garden on a regular basis.
For more details on this new system, contact Rothe House at 056 77228893, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
On the 8th December, Martin Cullen TD, Minister of Arts, Sports and Tourism formally announced the allocation of almost €11.2 million in Development Grants for six of the country’s main visitor attractions in counties Cork, Wicklow, Kilkenny, Wexford and Roscommon, as part of Fáilte Ireland’s Capital Investment Programme. According to the Minister, “the projects for which funding has been allocated are excellent examples of existing attractions which will benefit from funding for upgrading and development of historic houses and other projects.”
The nominated projects were: Fota House and Gardens, Co Cork, Russborough, Blessington, Co Wicklow, Rothe House, Kilkenny, Dunbrody, New Ross, Co Wexford, Strokestown Museum, Co Roscommon, and Blarney Castle, Blarney, Co Cork. Rothe House is now recognised to be a major national attraction and an essential element in Irelandâ€™s heritage and cultural history, and this funding will assist us to implement the recommendations of our Conservation Plan, and the House Re-presentation project.
The grant from Failte Ireland amounts to €1.9 million for Rothe House, and only provides part funding of the capital required for our House Re-presentation project. It is conditional on the Society and the Trust providing matching funding for the project. Whilst the Kilkenny Local Authorities have been very supportive, we will still need to carry-out another major fundraising campaign throughout 2009.
The Christmas Miscellany at Rothe House took place on Wednesday 3rd DecemberÂ last and was a thoroughly enjoyable evening. The house was packed, standing room only, and the music and contributions were very well received. The Sonas Chamber Choir and friends sang a lovely collection of old winter and Christmas songs and led the entire audience in a rousing chorus of ‘Hark the Herald Angels sing’ to finish off the evening. The contributions from Frank Marshall, Melosina Lenox-Conyngham, Paul Coady, RÃ³isÃn McQuillan and Gerry Moran were both amusing and thought provoking.Â In all the evening raised a considerable sum of money towards the House Re-presentation Project, and we are very grateful to all those contributors who gave their time free of charge.
On 8thÂ September,Â it was announced at the Tidy Towns Competition Awards Ceremony that the Rothe Family Garden in KilkennyÂ has won both the Regional and National Landscape Awards for 2008.Â
â€œThe TidyTowns Landscape Award is a special competition sponsored by The Tree Council of IrelandÂ to recognise the role of appropriate landscaping in Irish towns, villages and urban areas and its potential aesthetic and practical benefits to the local community.â€
The Garden wasÂ nominated by the Keep Kilkenny Beautiful Committee and both awards carry a financial prize of â‚¬1,000. A presentation ceremony will be held at a later date.
An exciting new exhibition showcasing the life and work of renowned potter Peter Brennan during his time in Kilkenny from 1941 to 1962 opened in Rothe House,Â on FridayÂ 5th SeptemberÂ 2008. Entry to the exhibitionÂ is included in the admission fee to the House & Garden.
Encouraged by local historian Michael Oâ€™Dwyer, the Kilkenny Archaeological Society at Rothe House invited Helena Brennan to set up an exhibition to record Peter Brennanâ€™s more than twenty years (1941-1962) in Kilkenny.
During that period, Peter established art and pottery classes, art exhibitions and societies, and set up the Ring Ceramics Studios Limited in 1945 with the financial and gallery help of art dealer Victor Waddington. Peter converted an old grain store at The Ring which had once been used for bull baiting. The Ring is on Parliament Street, opposite Rothe House (built in 1594) where this archival exhibition will run for six months or more.
The exhibition features a mock-up of the old studio showing many of the methods used, with tools and moulds, illustrating the wide range of production methods undertaken by Peter in Kilkenny in the 1940s and 1950s. In 1964, Peter produced over 3,500 specially commissioned mugs for the inaugural Beer Festival, and almost all of them â€˜disappearedâ€™ during the reception on the first night in the Beer Tent.
This is the first opportunity there has been to showcase the life and works of Peter J Brennan while he lived and worked in Kilkenny.
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 ofÂ building the database and maintaining the service means that charges will apply to users.Â The site is at http://kilkenny.brsgenealogy.com
Now that the Garden Re-creation isÂ complete, andÂ 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 firstÂ stageÂ of thisÂ entails conservation work on the fabric of the HouseÂ 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,Â chimney and roof work, improvement of guttering and drainage, and lift installation. A lot of this work is necessitated by obligations in relation toÂ (a) access for all, and (b) Health & Safety requirements.
Announcement of Grant:Â We were very pleased recently toÂ be notifiedÂ by the Dept. of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government that our project here hasÂ been included by the Minister in the list of Heritage Properties to benefit from Government grants this year, in our case â‚¬200,000, which will allow us to put these works in hand. The full cost estimate is â‚¬406,500, so we have a big gap to bridge!Â
Re-location within the House: The PlanÂ entails much re-arrangement of activities, to enable us to show off the House to its best for visitors. The Library and the FÃ¡s project will move to the Third House, which is now available as the Heritage Council has moved to its new locationÂ 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:Â We continue to rely heavily on public funding for the cost of the Plan – approx. â‚¬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!Â
Visit Rothe House
A visit to Rothe House 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 twelve children.
Rothe House News
Rothe House & Garden
Phone: +353 (0)56 7722893