Around fifty members of the national organisation, Historic Houses of Ireland, will open their doors to visitors in celebration of Heritage Week, which begins on the 12 August and runs until the 20 August – activities taking place include personalised house tours to outdoor events such as beekeeping (Stradbally Hall) and bird ringing (Altidore Castle).
This year Heritage Week is focused on ‘living heritage’ which will resonate with participant members of Historic Houses of Ireland; as custodians of some of Ireland’s most significant period buildings they understand, probably better than most, the ups and downs of living in a house imbued with history. Many of the homes open during Heritage Week have been in the same hands for generations and the surrounding landscapes have been preserved and maintained over hundreds of years, presenting a living insight into Ireland’s rural heritage.
One home opening its doors to the public, Castlegarde in Co. Limerick, is believed to be one of Ireland’s oldest continuously inhabited castles. Other houses visitors can see during Heritage Week, such as Killua Castle in Co. Westmeath, Ballysallagh House in Co. Kilkenny, Loughton House in Co. Offaly and Rokeby Hall, in Co. Louth have been taken on by new families who will share their restoration experiences as they have slowly returned these buildings to their former glory.
For more information about events that are taking place during Heritage Week visit www.heritageweek.ie