Life's a beech for Kilkenny's king of the castle
The gardens of Shankill Castle in Paulstown, Co Kilkenny, contain some venerable old specimen trees including giant sequoia, ash and lime. Though the castle is privately owned, visitors are invited to walk around the grounds and see for themselves.
But the owner of Beech House, a former parochial house in the village of Paulstown, will probably have enough trees of their own to be looking at.
The house is approached through wrought iron gates and a private driveway overlooked by the stately copper beeches that give the place its name. It stands on 1.77 acres, including an orchard with apple, pear and plum trees, and a raspberry and gooseberry patch. There's an enclosed flower garden with raised beds, and a pergola with a dining area.
Built in the 1840s, the house was reroofed, rewired and replumbed in 2000. It has 2,044 square feet of floor space including a sitting room, measuring 17ft by 14ft, with two picture windows and a grey marble fireplace with solid fuel stove. The dining room is roughly the same size, but with a black marble fireplace. The square kitchen has a utility room off it and doors to the flower garden.
There's also a downstairs toilet and a boot room on the ground floor. Upstairs are four bedrooms, three with en-suite bathrooms.
Outbuildings include a barn and a lean-to cut-stone building. A walled-in courtyard at the back gives access to a rear paddock.
The house is right in the heart of the village, befitting a former parish house. It's about 20km from Kilkenny city.
Sherry FitzGerald McCreery in Kilkenny (056 772 1904) is handling the sale of Beech House for €395,000.