St. John’s Manor, Enniscorthy, Co Wexford

St. John’s Manor  Enniscorthy  Co. Wexford.

BRIEF HISTORY In 1231 AD Sir Gerald de Prendergast founded the Priory of St. John’s for Augustinian Cannons on the current site of St. John’s Manor. Granite quoins, steps, archways and many other building materials including ancient oak beams from the original Priory were used in the construction of the Manor as it stands today. Charles Hill built St. John’s Manor in 1810. The attached Priory Mews Cottage and Antiques Tea-Room/Sitting Room predates the Manor to 1232 and is listed and protected as one of the oldest structures in Ireland.

 A double bow fronted four storey Georgian Mansion built in 1810 on the site of a 12th century Franciscan monastery, and as such is Listed as a Preserved Building. It occupies approximately five acres and commands one of the most beautiful reaches of the Slaney River with its glittering waters and scenic valley. It has been provided with modern conveniences while retaining all period features and offers peace, tranquillity, and seclusion with plenty of space in a richly decorated and sublimely comfortable home.

Panoramic views of Enniscorthy, the ancient and historic Ringwood and Vinegar Hill are evident from most windows. It inspired one of the best contemporary poets, Thomas Kinsella, to pen his famous poem Another September while staying at St. John’s.

Another September

 Dreams fled away, this country bedroom, raw
 With the touch of the dawn, wrapped in a minor peace,
 Hears through an open window the garden draw
 Long pitch black breaths, lay bare its apple trees,
 Ripe pear trees, brambles, windfall-sweetened soil,
 Exhale rough sweetness against the starry slates.
 Nearer the river sleeps St. John's, all toil
 Locked fast inside a dream with iron gates.

 Domestic Autumn, like an animal
 Long used to handling by those countrymen,
 Rubs her kind hide against the bedroom wall
 Sensing a fragrant child come back again
 - Not this half-tolerated consciousness
 That plants its grammar in her yielding weather
 But that unspeaking daughter, growing less
 Familiar where we fell asleep together.

 Wakeful moth wings blunder near a chair,
 Toss their light shell at the glass, and go
 To inhabit the living starlight. Stranded hair
 Stirs on still linen. It is as though
 The black breathing that billows her sleep, her name,
 Drugged under judgement, waned and - bearing daggers
 And balances--down the lampless darkness they came,
 Moving like women : Justice, Truth, such figures.
The mansion’s imposing façade is flood-lit at night and may be seen from the far bank of the N11 Rosslare to Dublin road, which is approximately half a mile distant.

St John’s Manor is approached via a winding poplar lined quarter mile private avenue, ensuring total privacy and seclusion. Within the grounds is an ancient oak tree reputed to be over 600 years old, and listed in the prestigious Tree Register of Ireland. A shamrock sun terrace and a willow walk provide access to the Slaney River. The present owners have planted in excess of four hundred trees in the grounds of the Manor during their custodianship.

MarieTherese39 412 days ago

“On February 13th 1552, a lease was granted to Gabriel Blake, “of the Franciscan Friary, Enniscorthy, with a water mill and other appurtenances adjoining; the Manor Enniscorthy, a ruined castle and land in the same, an old weir and land in Garrane,” land.

MarieTherese39 421 days ago

During the time my great-grand uncle Ned resided at St John’s the land comprised of 500 acres. He also had many other properties in Wexford.

MarieTherese39 422 days ago

1911 census of my great-grandmother’s brother.

Crikey, he’d only one daughter in 01.

MarieTherese39 422 days ago

Census form of my great-grand uncle, Edward Kavanagh. I read that his wife Roseanna was was born in Australia.

Houses in St. John’s (Enniscorthy Rural, Wexford) St. John’s

5 Kavanagh View occupants or original census form (as a PDF)
Roseanna also had a daughter called Eileen. Eileen married a prominent Wexford county doctor who was a brother of Bart Bastible, the Sweepstake T.V personality.
“The Irish Hospitals’ Sweepstakes” programme, sponsored by the Irish Hospitals’ Trust to promote the sale of tickets for the Irish Sweepstake, and “The Walton’s Programme”, sponsored by the Dublin music shop of that name, became among the best-known and longest-running sponsored programmes. Listen here to the closing sequence of “The Irish Hospitals’ Sweepstakes” programme.
RTÉ Libraries and Archives: preserving a unique record of Irish life. (The Irish Hospitals’ Sweepstakes. First broadcast: 1930s Presenters: Ian Priestly Mitchell & Bart Bastible)
She became an artist and even sold one of her painting to my uncle Tom R.I.P. in Canada. He had insisted on paying for it, so my uncle Willie told me. Eileen went to live in Dalkey, Co Dublin. I think she may have had an art shop, or a shop of some other description anyway. She was fiercely independent. I think he told me that there was a son who was an accountant. Uncle Willie R.I.P. went to visit her in a nursing home in the vicinity approximately ten years ago. She has since died.
Another daughter of Ned’s went out to Africa. She became head of a religious order. She donated the belfry of St John’s to some church or other out in Africa. She was allegedly fuming when she came home on holiday to Ireland to discover the modern usage of St. John’s by the second last owners, who were in the hairdressing business. Nothing remains static. She lived to be a ripe old age. She could have been in the ninety bracket when she visited her home?
There was also a very strong heavy door given to Enniscorthy Museum.
The Kavanagh children had very privileged lives. They even had their own school and tutors. Ned made his fortune, mostly I think, in the shipping business. He also took risks with his fortune.
He had wanted his only sister, my great grandmother Anastatia (Ansty) to marry a surgeon who was lined up for her, but she had other plans on marrying a plain gentle farmer, who had only one-fifth of the land that Ned had at St John’s alone. She was disowned. However, she had enough sovereigns in a steel-suit-case that saw her educate her children and grand-children. It was rumoured too that some of the undeclared sovereigns went on to build up Ned’s (grand-nephew) little Knock empire. That’s supposed to be a secret family folk-lore. I don’t know the truth of it at all? It’s such a shame that Ned senior deprived the cousins of knowing each other as children. ‘Never the twain shall meet’. The latter turned out to be very successful.
Medical Appointments by Local Authorities.
By the courtesy of the Minister for Local Government and Public Health we are enabled to publish the following monthly list of medical candidates appointed to offices under local authorities on the recommendation of the Local Appointments Commissioners: – … [D]octor C. Bastible, 50 Hannaville Park, Terenure, Dublin to be M.O.H., Co. Wexford, who will also act as School Medical Officer. (October 1930)
Dr. C. Bastible attended the wife of the president of Ireland Sean T. O’Kelly. Mary-Kate was a lady of many friends and no enemies.

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