Lifford landmark has views to thrill in Donegal for €795,000
Croghan House Lifford, Co Donegal €795,000
House-hunters with troublesome teenage children - or, indeed, an errant spouse - may be interested in Croghan House, located a short distance from the town of Lifford on the Donegal side of the border with Northern Ireland. Lifford is the county town of Donegal and its administrative centre.
Croghan was once the residence of the Governor of Lifford Gaol and rumour has it that there was a tunnel leading directly from the house to the historic building that houses the courthouse and jail in the centre of the town. The courthouse was designed by local architect Michael Priestley in 1746 to facilitate a circuit assizes judge to visit the county, and its basement was used as the County Gaol, a place in which to confine debtors, felons and "lunatics", until a new jail was built next door. The courthouse was still used as a venue for trials until 1938, but has since been renovated as an award-winning Heritage Centre. In any event, if the tunnel of local legend does exist, it could come in very handy, even just as a threat to wayward family.
Tunnel aside, Croghan is a fine period house that occupies a wonderful elevated site overlooking the River Finn just before it meets the River Mourne to form the River Foyle. It has views across the surrounding Donegal and Derry countryside, taking in Lifford, Strabane and Newtownstewart. The house is a four-square, symmetrical, classic Georgian two-storey over basement country residence sitting on 40 acres. The approach is along a tree-lined and stud-railed avenue that leads to a sweeping forecourt in front of and to the side of the house. There is a second rear entrance to the property that may formerly have been used by staff.
A pillared portico leads to the double front doors and, once inside, the wealth of original period features is apparent. A grand staircase leads from the entrance hall, lit by a Georgian feature window, to the bedrooms upstairs, while a second staircase leads to the basement.
The principal reception rooms are located at entrance level. They have the high ceilings, decorative plasterwork and ornate marble fireplaces associated with houses of this period. The drawing and dining rooms are elegant spaces designed for entertaining, while the living room is cosier, for everyday use. The kitchen has an Aga and granite worktops with a breakfast area that opens out onto the courtyard to the side of the house. There is a guest lavatory too.
Upstairs there are five bedrooms in total, two of which are en suite, and a family bathroom. The basement is described as "high and dry" and accommodates a utility/laundry, wine cellar and billiard room/gym.
To one side of the house is a large, brick-paved courtyard with a lofted double garage with automatic shutters. Additional lofted outbuildings include 13 stables and various sheds, so there's plenty of accommodation for horses and ponies. The gardens have been well-maintained by the current owners and are sheltered by stands of mature trees including beech, copper beech and sycamore, while a wooded area in front of the house has an attractive cascading water feature.
Size: 380 sqm
Agent: Savills (01) 663 4350
Viewing: By appointment