A couple of months ago, I went with my friend J and A to the New Bridge House and Farm in Demense, Ireland. J volunteers with the Alone group every couple of weeks. Alone is a volunteer run organization that matches volunteers with the elderly and home bound. They work together to also put on volunteer / elderly outings and socialization programs. I was asked to tag along and to pictures of the group for their newsletter, which I was only too happy to do.
The New Bridge house and farm about 30 minutes north of the city center. The building itself is a Georgian era home with multiple out buildings including a carriage house, stables, old pig / chicken homes, victorian walled garden, and plenty of park land and animals. Some of the history of the location is as follows:
On June 19th, 1736, Charles Cobbe (Cobb), then Bishop of Kildare, paid £5,526.5.6 for the townlands surrounding Donabate, Lainstown, Haggardstown and Newbridge, containing 490 acres. In 1747, the house itself was started on part of these lands, in a traditional Georgian style. For inspiration, the Bishop used another fine Georgian house which he had visited in the city center. In 1751, Charles son, Thomas, married Lady Elizabeth Beresford, daughter of the Earl of Tyrone. She brought money into the family, and redecorated and updated the house including adding the famed Red Drawing room. The house has been occupied fairly consistently since the completion under Lady Elizabeth, and remains occupied part of the year by the Cobbe family today. The surrounding parkland, house, and property now belong to the Fingal county council who manage and run it as a public and visitor’s attraction.
The day that I was there was bright sun most of the day, but also intermittent showers. We toured the house (no pictures allowed) and went out into the petting “zoo” portion of the animal farm and the out buildings. One of the highlights was watching the peacock strut around in the courtyard. We also got to see a very old guilded carriage that used to be used to take the mayor to the swearing in ceremony in Dublin.
One of the amusing parts of the tour was actually seeing the sign on the blacksmith’s shop – and getting a chuckle.
If you’d like to see more on the house (including pictures of the beautiful inside) you’re welcome to check out their website at: