I went on a tour of Kevinsfort House in Sligo as part of Heritage Week. I only found out this house was here a couple of years ago when I was looking for an address in Kevinsfort and ended up at the house. It’s very striking and I always wondered what was behind the blue door.
Kevinsfort House is a Georgian Manor House. It was built in the 1820’s by Capt. George Dodwell on land bought from the Wynnes of Hazelwood. The facade of the house is cut and dressed limestone. The house has six bedrooms, three reception rooms, two bathrooms with original Victorian lavatories, baths and plumbing still in working order.
There are a lot of original features in the house, including shutters at the windows and bells to ring for the servants. There are also separate quarters and a staircase that the servants would have used, the original kitchen in the basement still contains an early model cast iron range.
Not only is this a really lovely house, it also has a great history. In 1923 Kevinsfort House was sold to C.J Bentley, a racehorse owner. His one notable achievement was the mare “Ballinode”, known as “the Sligo mare”. She was the first mare to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup, she won this in 1925. Sadly C.J. Bentley fell into financial trouble and the house had to be sold, the receivers even took his Gold Cup. I think a lovely touch, made by the present owners, is the horse in the cobbles of the bell yard as a tribute to “the Sligo Mare”.
In 1936 the Condon family bought the house and surrounding land and started a dairy farm. The dairy produced, milk, cream and ice cream to Sligo and the surrounding areas. I had no idea about this and it was amazing to see the milk bottles, signs and ice cream cartons in the basement, I’ve since here the memories of Sligo people who remember the products or who had family working at the dairy.
My thanks to Fiona and Sheilagh for telling me all about the house and its history, the rest of my photos are here. It’s lovely to see the house so loved and well looked after. The courtyard and stables have now been converted to luxury apartments, they are in such a lovely location, in walking distance to Sligo town and a short drive away from Strandhill, to check out the apartments click here.