15/02/2015 Minister Humphreys opens restored wing of Townley Hall, Drogheda Townley Hall designed by GPO architect
The Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys TD, is today (Sunday) officially opening the recently restored wing of Townley Hall in Drogheda, Co. Louth. Townley Hall was designed by Francis Johnston, who is considered to be one of Ireland’s finest architects and who also designed the GPO.
Townley Hall is considered not only as one of the most significant country houses in Co Louth, but also one of the most important houses of the period nationally. Townley Hall, and in particular the dramatic domed cylindrical stair hall, is widely considered to be Francis Johnston’s masterpiece.
The kitchen wing, derelict since the 1960s, was recently restored at a cost of over €300,000 and was funded through a Louth Leader Partnership grant in combination with private donations. The restoration, incorporating many original design features, will now provide enhanced conference, meeting and dining capability to the existing facilities of the house.
Speaking today Minister Humphreys said:
“Townley Hall is a beautiful building overlooking the World Heritage site at Brú na Bóinne and the site of the Battle of the Boyne. A tour around Townley Hall makes it very easy to understand why it is considered to be Francis Johnston’s masterpiece.
“The restoration project is an excellent example of how local organisations, owners of heritage properties, conservation professionals, local authorities and Government Departments can work together to achieve great results. I am glad to see that this beautiful historical house will continue to be used by the local community and for artistic and cultural events and activities.
“My Department is committed to the protection and preservation of our built heritage. This week I announced €624,000 in funding for the Structures at Risk fund, which is used to safeguard heritage buildings in public and civic ownership.
“By continuing to support best practice in the conservation of protected structures, we can preserve our built heritage for future generations and boost our attractiveness as a tourist destination, while also contributing to local employment.”