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Friday 16 November 2018

Roscommon organic farm with tourism potential on the shores of Finlough Lake

Cloonrane House is located near Finlough Lake close to Strokestown
Cloonrane House is located near Finlough Lake close to Strokestown
Jim O'Brien

Jim O'Brien

A one-day odyssey took me to Mullingar last week from where I visited three farms, two in Westmeath and one near Strokestown in Roscommon.

The N52 is a lovely old road that winds its way from Nenagh to Tullamore and ends up in Louth. On its northeast-southwest axis it takes you through some lovely country and beautiful villages.

I'm sure it's a truck driver's nightmare, but on a fine summer's morning there's no finer road to find yourself on.

I'll start where my journey ended, at Cloonrane House, a gorgeous 48ac organic farm on the shores of Finlough Lake near Strokestown.

The place includes a farmhouse, a farmyard with a mix of very decent sheds, all in good condition and a renovated stone lodge generating a healthy AirBnB income. The price is guided by Murtagh Bros Mullingar at €350,000. Located in good farming country, the holding is about 4km outside Strokestown off the Tulsk Road.

On the way there my phone guidance system took me along a warren of country roads that wound their way through the best of land with some fine farm holdings all round. The place was bathed in early summer sunshine when I reached it.

The fields were alive with the flowers of May and everywhere the sounds of birds. The farm runs down to Finlough Lake, renowned for fishing, particularly for tench and rudd.

An avenue from the end of a cul-de-sac, runs past the lodge and the sheds, ending at the house at the other side of the land.

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The current owners farmed the place to supply their business in Dublin with organic produce. There is a range of poly-tunnels currently on the land, but these are not included in the sale.

Farmed organically over the last number of years the holding is in permanent pasture in good heart and serviced by the avenue that gives access to all portions of the property.

Divisions

The holding s laid out in a series of nine fields divided by traditional hedgerow. Five divisions located to the left of the driveway and furthest from the lake are in a fine sward of grass and in good heart. Two of the fields have shoreline access, one was used as a kitchen garden and one is a haggard with the sheds and cottage.

The yard is made up of two modern A-roofed, open sheds on slats, one of which is three columns in size and the other a two-column structure.

A series of older stone sheds used as a garage and for storage have been newly re-roofed and in good order.

There is a cattle crush and pen, and all gates are newly painted and well hung.

Located near the sheds is a lovely stone lodge known as the Herd House and possibly the original house on the land.

The place has been tastefully renovated to include a kitchen/dining area with a tiled floor, a living room with stone fireplace and wooden flooring while ­upstairs is a study and a bedroom.

Other features include double-glazed sash windows and electric storage heating.

The main residence on the farm is a fine two-storey structure with bay windows and a porch to the front.

In perfectly habitable condition, the accommodation includes a drawing room with wooden floor, a marble fireplace, a bay window and French windows that lead to the garden.

The dining room also enjoys the benefits of a bay window while the kitchen has a tiled floor and a solid fuel cooker. Downstairs also includes a WC and a utility.

Upstairs are four bedrooms all with cast-iron fireplaces and wooden floors while the family bathroom and a separate shower room are also on this floor. Cloonrane House has the makings of many things; a good hobby farm, a country home, a home for the family with a second income or an artist's retreat.

The property will be sold at public auction on Wednesday, June 20 at 3pm at the Percy French Hotel, Strokestown.

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