Yulefest Kilkenny Christmas Market


Calling all Christmas Elves!

As you may know, Kilkenny County Council are supporting a county-wide Christmas Festival in 2016 titled “Yulefest Kilkenny”.

“By developing a Christmas Festive Celebration, we want to create a new, entertaining, exciting and uplifting experience for local people, visitors and returning families during December”

Rothe House has been chosen to play host to a magical Christmas Craft Market for the duration of the festival. This market will be run in tandem with a craft food market located across the street at Grace’s Castle. There will be music provided and a costumed character creating atmosphere and photo opportunities for people attending the event. Entry to Rothe House will be free and the main gate will remain open to allow passers-by uninterrupted access to the stalls. Kilkenny County Council are also investing in a new street lighting scheme to create a trail for visitors and lead them to key locations, such as Rothe House.

The festival will be advertised nationally in the coming months, utilising the expertise of consultants TL Marketing and Presence PR in association with Kilkenny Tourism.

We are seeking craftspeople to take stalls in our charming rooms and courtyards for the dates and trading times listed below. Food and beverage vendors will be required to supply their own all-weather marquees and trade from within the courtyards, all other vendors will be located inside.

  Friday Saturday Sunday
2nd – 4th Dec 5pm – 8pm 10am – 6pm 12pm – 4pm
9th – 11th Dec 5pm – 8pm 10am – 6pm 12pm – 4pm
16th – 18th Dec 5pm – 8pm 10am – 6pm 12pm – 4pm

We are looking for craftspeople and traders to offer our visitors primarily hand-made items and hot beverages.  The cost for each stall for the duration of the festival will be €300 for craft vendors and €500 for beverage vendors.

Vendors taking a pitch for the entire festival will be given priority, but single weekend pitches are available for €150 for craft vendors and €200 for beverage vendors.

To apply for a space, vendors will need to complete THIS FORM and send it with photos of their products by the 30th of September to Rothe House and Garden, Parliament St., Kilkenny or manager@rothehouse.com. All vendors are also required to provide evidence of their Public and Product Liability Insurance. Food and beverage vendors are required to provide evidence that they are registered with the HSE. If you are successful you will be contacted and required to pay the cost for your stall by the 28th of October.


A Tale told in Thread and Cloth

culture night banner res

This year, Culture Night will take place on Friday 16th September between 5pm and 11pm all over the country. Arts and cultural organisations open their doors until late with hundreds of free events, tours, talks & performances for you, your family and friends to enjoy.

On the 16th, between 6pm and 8pm the first two houses of John Rothe Fitzpiers’ Renaissance mansion will be open free of charge. To celebrate his success as a cloth merchant of some renown we have two very special experiences planned for you;


Curator’s Choice

Visitors will have the chance to see some of Kilkenny Archaeological Society’s magnificent costume collection up close. Our curator has chosen some special items from storage which will be on display for one night only. The curator herself will be on hand to speak about the costumes and the challenges of looking after such important pieces. There will also be some not-so-precious costumes on display so kids of all ages can get the chance to dress up!

Ros Tapestry Stitchers

Did you know that the final panel of the extraordinary Ros Tapestry is being worked on in Rothe House? A panel depicting the Battle of Ossory, which took place in Co. Kilkenny in 1170, is on display as a work in progress alongside three of Anne Griffin Bernstorff’s huge painted canvases. On Culture Night the stitchers themselves will be here so you can see them at work. They will even give you the opportunity to make your own stitch in the historic tapestry if you have a steady hand…

Drop in to say hello any time between 6pm and 8pm, we’re looking forward to seeing you!

Or check out the Culture Night website for all listings.


Heritage Week Apple Pressing

heritage week banner resHeritage Week is Ireland’s annual celebration of our built, natural and cultural heritage. This year it takes place from the 20th to the 28th of August. There is something for everyone to enjoy; exhibitions, activities, talks, demonstrations, tours and more. Check out what’s happening near you by clicking here.

In cooperation with Future Proof Kilkenny and the Kilkenny Fruit Tree Project, Rothe House and Garden are holding an Apple Pressing on Wednesday 24th August from 12pm to 3pm. We will be demonstrating how to create apple juice the traditional way using a cross-bar hand-operated press. Everyone is invited to bring their own apples and containers and our volunteers will happily turn them into fresh, delicious fruit juice. Entry to the garden will be through the gate on New Building Lane and will be free of charge for the duration. Why not take the opportunity to visit our Tudor walled garden and chat with our gardener? You’ll get to see how we grow vegetables, herbs and fruit including our fine selection of Irish heritage apple trees. For more information on apple pressing events this autumn follow @apple_pressing

We have three other ‘top picks’ from the Kilkenny Heritage Week Event Guide that shouldn’t be missed:

Kilkenny Book Fair Saturday 20th 11am – 5.30pm, Club House Hotel, Patrick Street. A mecca for the collector with booksellers from all over Ireland exhibiting. Book lovers welcome!

The Black Death in Ireland Tuesday 23rd 7pm, Castlecomer Library. A book launch and talk by author and broadcaster Finbar Dwyer.

Walking Tour of Parliament Street Wednesday 24th 7pm, meeting at the carpark by the old Mayfair Building. A guided walking tour along this most historic street will be lead by President of Kilkenny Archaeological Society, Seamus Brennan.

May in the Garden

may bannerWith the weather turning noticeably milder you might be tempted to turn your attention to the garden, but are you at a loss for where to start or what to do?  We asked our resident gardener, Mary, for a few tips for what you should be doing in the garden for the month of May!

  • Sow Swedes, beetroot, carrots, peas, lettuce and spring onions but direct sow frost tender veg.
  • From the middle of the month onward plant bedding plants.  Tender plants can also be planted out.
  • Ensure newly planted fruit trees have been watered if there are minimal amounts of rain.
  • Clip beech, hornbeam, box, thuja and Leyland hedges later in the month.
  • Support perennials, clear spring flowering plants and prepare the ground for replanting.

We hope these tips have been useful and we welcome any gardening questions or queries that you might have!

If you’re looking to stock up on some unique plants then why not drop into our plant sale on May 28th here in Rothe House & Garden.  There will be a wide variety of plants on sale; including many perenials as mentioned above, all grown and tended to by our gardener.  There will also be free admission to the house on the day or why not avail of one of three guided tours at 11am, 1pm or 3pm. We hope you can make it.

Lunchtime Yoga at Rothe House


Starting on Thursday 5th of May we will be offering a four-week course of beginners’ yoga at Rothe House between 1.10pm and 1.50pm – perfect for your lunch break. You will be instructed by the wonderful Jenny Dillon who has been practicing yoga for 4 years. Jenny  also works as a chartered physiotherapist and really understands the endless benefits yoga offers health and well being. It’s just €10 per session or €32 for all four. We ask that you bring your own may and give us a call on 056 7722893 to book your place.


Rothe House 50th Anniversary programme.

Rothe House was first opened to the public on the 17th of April 1966.

As part of our golden jubilee celebrations, we are holding a gala screening of a new documentary concerning the life of Kilkenny’s own Hubert Butler.

Refreshments will be served on arrival. The film will then be introduced by the film maker and followed by a discussion with special guests.


Saturday 16th April, Set Theatre.

Red carpet reception 7pm

Screening 7.30pm

Tickets are €25 and are available from Rothe House and Langton’s

We would greatly appreciate your support and hope you can join us for this very special evening.


On Sunday the 17th April our open day will include an exhibition of photographs of Rothe House and its reconstruction in the early to mid 1960’s.  The exhibition will be launched at 3pm, but visitors are asked to drop in anytime between 12pm and 5pm.

We very much look forward to seeing you!

For further information or details contact us on 056 7722893 or by email at reception@rothehouse.com




Job Vacancy


Would you like to join our team? We are inviting applications for the role of LTI Project Coordinator and would love to hear from you.

Take a look at the details here: LTI Project Coordinator Feb 2016

Regina Sexton: Renaissance Food & Drink at Rothe House


Regina Sexton is a food historian, food writer, broadcaster and cook. She has been researching and publishing on the subject of Irish food and culinary history since 1993. Her research interests include food and identity, food and tradition and food in the Irish country house.

Regina will give a talk about the typical foods of Kilkenny and the southeast in the 16th & 17th Centuries, when this magnificent townhouse and garden were constructed by merchant, John Rothe Fitz-Piers.

The food history talk will be followed by a Bread and Butter Making demonstration with Joe Mulhall, The Little Mill Company, Anne Neary, Ryeland House and Breda McDonald ICA. (6pm)

Date: Sunday 25th October
Time: 5pm
Venue: Rothe House
Admission: €15
To Book: email info@rothehouse.com or call 056 7722893

For further details of events happening during the festival click here.

Positive Living Workshops with Breda Gardner.



9 may 14


Positive Living Talks

Breda Gardner will be running her latest series of positive living talks inspired by and based on the wonderful teachings of Dr Wayne Dyer.  Each workshop will include a handout and some gentle exercise to music, plus a brief talk and a meditation. You will come away feeling rejuvenated, refreshed and relaxed!  You can come to one or all of the talks, and they’ll help you get energised and get you back on track in your life!  Full details below.

Each evening runs from 8pm to 9.30pm, and costs €10 per session.  The Kilkenny talks take place herein Rothe House, Parliament St, Kilkenny, with proceeds shared with Rothe House.  Places are limited, so please call Breda on 087 2025753 or send an email to breda@bredagardner.com to reserve your place.

Tues 6 Oct  – The meaning of omnipresent intention / Living in the now

Tues 13 Oct  – Connection to intention: how to find your inner purpose

Tues 20 Oct – Obstacles to connecting to intention / Finding inner peace

Tues 27 Oct – Intention & Infinity

Tues 3 Nov Oct -Wayne Dyer’s 10 secrets for success & inner peace (Part 1)

Tues 10 Nov Oct -Wayne Dyer’s 10 secrets for success & inner peace (Part 2

Kilkenny FREE Day 2015


On Saturday, October 10th, Rothe House & Garden will be participating in Kilkenny Free Day with two FREE guided tours through the late Tudor period town house and garden at 1pm and 3pm. The tours will finish up in the garden where costumed guides will give an experience of a Tudor garden.  Places are limited for the tours so make sure you drop into reception early.

Later that day, at 4pm, there will be a free talk titled ‘Dig for Mental Health’ on the benefits of gardening and community allotments for mental health.  The talk, given by garden writer and designer Shirley Lanigan will be accompanied by a performance by the High Hopes Choir and there will be refreshments served.

All are invited to attend and we hope to see you on the day!