A bastion of auld decency
Once the home of the legendary huntswoman and hostess Lady Molly Cusack Smith, this 211ac Co Galway estate has much potential
Published 27/07/2016 | 02:30
Bermingham House near Tuam in Co Galway was the home of the late and legendary Lady Molly Cusack Smith also known as Molly O'Rorke.
The house and lands are for sale by private treaty with a guide of between €1.5m and €2m. At the height of the boom an offer of approximately €4m failed to buy the place.
Situated 3km from Tuam and 40km from Galway city the house is synonymous with the world of horses and hunting and a way of life revelled in by the late Lady Molly.
One of the most colourful characters to stride the Irish equestrian scene in the latter part of the 20th Century she was master of the Galway Blazers. In her younger years, she was a practitioner of haute couture who trained in Paris, a renowned chef and a legendary hostess whose quick wit and caustic tongue brought many to book.
Born in 1905 in Portobello Dublin into the ancient O'Rorke of Breffni Clan, Mary Adele O'Rorke was always proud of her ancient Gaelic heritage and resisted being described as 'Anglo Irish'.
After a row with her father as a young woman she ran away to Paris to study opera but instead entered the world of haute couture. She also became a Cordon Bleu chef and moved to London in the 1940s.
It was there she met her husband, Lord Dermot Cusack Smith, and described their relationship as a suitable match: "He was extremely rich and had a title," she said. The couple had one child and the marriage ended in divorce.
Molly returned to Ireland and from the family pile, Bermingham House near Tuam, she carved out a legendary place in equestrian circles. She was the first woman Master of the Galway Blazers and established her own pack, the Bermingham and North Galway Hunt.