Historic Family Home owners make History come Alive

Ireland's unique Historic Family Homes tour was launched on Tuesday 12th July 2022. The tour covers over eight centuries of history and heritage, within these historic homes in East Limerick and South Tipperary.


The unique historic event started at Castlegarde Castle, Cappamore. This haunted Castle, was built in the 1190s by the King of Thomond, Donal Mor O'Brien. Later, the extension was added by Waller O'Grady using the well-known architects, the Pain Brothers in the 1820s.

The owner, David Thompson made history come alive as he led the tour through the nine centuries of activity at Castlegarde, referring to numerous points of interest, including the murder hole, the Guard tower, and the ghost, while his wife Hazel served coffee and homemade scones.

Grenane House 2

The second home visited was Grenane House in Tipperary. Grenane has been continuously lived in by the Mansergh family since it was built in 1700. The visitors toured the Listed house and gardens, which took in both the architectural features of the house as well as a modified history of the family.

The rooms shown, included the wonderfully hand-painted mural of the playroom featuring The Mice of Brambley Hedge. In the gardens, the group was shown the shrubbery with its many and varied rare plants, trees and shrubs, as well as the only hazel nut walk in the country in the walled garden, dating from 1845.

Lismacue House 1

The final visit was to Lismacue House. This property was purchased in 1704 by the ancestor of the current owner. The present house was completed in 1813 by William Baker to the design of the well known Kilkenny architect William Robertson.

The tour included a short history of the property visiting the drawing room, with original wallpaper and details, the dining room and inner hall, leaving many stories and features for the full tour. The tour concluded with a light lunch and lively discussion.

Lismacue House 2

Historic Family Home Tours (HFHTours) was formed to provide a unique experience for groups interested in family homes and their local history. The owners are the guides for the tour of their own home, so visitors can avail of their in-depth knowledge of each property, and stories associated with their home. Morning coffee and scones, light lunch and afternoon tea are provided on the day tour.

This is best suited to groups of 10 to 25 visitors. Smaller groups available on request. Information is set out on a leaflet with further details and booking facilities on the website: www.hfhtours.ie

Jonathan Manning, CEO, Historic Houses of Ireland