THE HUGELY anticipated opening of eerie Loftus Hall - reputed to be the most haunted house in Ireland - is expected to significantly boost tourist numbers in the New Ross area.
For the first time in over twenty years, the doors to the grim and gruesome mansion opened to the curious public at the weekend.
'We are confident this will boost tourism in the area and attract extra numbers,' said Bettie-Marie Burger Smit, General Manager of the Brandon House Hotel, who are partnering with Loftus Hall for special events.
'From a tourism point of view it adds another unique dimension to what is already available in New Ross,' added Bettie-Marie.
In July the Quigley Family, who bought the renowned mansion in September 2011, opened the grounds to the public to coincide with the ominous Friday the thirteenth date. This drew visitors from all over Ireland and abroad to tour the grounds and catch an up-close glimpse of the premises.
Over the weekend the inside of the mansion was opened to the public to coincide with Hallowe'en. On Friday night the first glimpse inside the house was afforded to the 120 guests of the 18th century themed grand opening banquet, who between them helped raise a staggering €20,000 for nine charities.
The following day, Saturday, groups of tourists were brought on a sold-out interactive tour through the ground floor of the house, which has been untouched, only preserved, since it was abandoned.
Up until yesterday (Monday) all tours were sold out and bookings are 'flying' for this week.
' The tours are receiving rave reviews,' said BettieMarie, who explained that there will be hourly tours every day until this Sunday when the tours will then take place every weekend for the foreseeable future subject to public demand.