End of era as last of Markree Demense goes under the gavel
Markree Demense is one of the largest farms to come on the market in the north-west in recent times.
The 263ac property is in parkland setting in the grounds of Markree Castle Hotel in Co Sligo with mature trees and made up of excellent pasture.
Located around 1.5km from Collooney and 12km from Sligo town, the property includes 100ac in grassland, 56ac in forestry and 93ac of old woodland.
The castle and lands were in the possession of the Cooper family for 350 years, dating from Cromwellian times until recently.
John Cooper an officer in the Cromwellian army got the lands in compensation for his service to the fearsome Oliver. When Cromwell defeated the mighty O'Brien Clan in Clare, their leader Conor O'Brien was killed in the battle.
In order to protect her children and her lands, his widow, the infamous Máire Rua, married Cooper.
At the conclusion of the war Cromwell rewarded his soldiers with land and possessions and so Markree Castle and swathes of the surrounding lands were granted to John Cooper.
The place remained in the family up to recently.