Pioneering family are selling a 100ac Tipperary estate once home to the Denny bacon dynasty


Palatial spread: The 9,000 sq ft residence is 7km from Cahir and stands on 100ac, which is split into 60ac of farmland, 20ac of forestry and 20ac in riverside grassland
Palatial spread: The 9,000 sq ft residence is 7km from Cahir and stands on 100ac, which is split into 60ac of farmland, 20ac of forestry and 20ac in riverside grassland
The extensive outbuildings include the original coach house and a five-bay shed for a wood-chip heating system
Jim O'Brien

Jim O'Brien

Ballybrada House near Cahir in Tipperary was built by the Denny family of Waterford, who made their fortune in the bacon industry with the famous Denny's brand.

The founder of the business, Henry Denny, is credited with inventing the rasher. Their house and estate on 100ac is now for sale by private treaty with a guide price of €2.2m.

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The 9,000 sq ft house located 7km from Cahir was home to the Dennys until 1937 when the Harold-Barry family bought it and transformed it into a hotel for anglers, who fished the well-stocked Tonogue and Suir rivers that bound and run through the property. In 1946, it came into the ownership of a South African who remained on until 1983.

Josef and Marianne Finke, a German couple with a deep interest in organics, bought Ballybrada in 1983. The Green movement and the move to organics was gathering pace in Germany at that time, but was virtually unheard of in Ireland. Beginning with organic oats, the family branched out into other produce and became central figures in the Irish organic movement.

The extensive outbuildings include the original coach house and a five-bay shed for a wood-chip heating system
The extensive outbuildings include the original coach house and a five-bay shed for a wood-chip heating system

The land comprises c60ac, which is suitable for both tillage and livestock, has been organically farmed for the past 36 years.

Though previously used for tillage, it is currently in grazing for cattle and sheep. Some 20ac is in timber and 20ac in riverside grass and includes native woodlands.

The River Suir, which borders the farm, is well known for its stock of salmon and trout and about 1.4km of single bank fishing rights are included in the sale. There is also fishing on the Tonogue River that runs through the land.

The accommodation in the main house includes four reception rooms with open fireplaces and large bay windows, and a modern kitchen/breakfast room. On the first floor are five bedrooms, two with separate dressing rooms, and two bathrooms.

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The wing of the property is in use as a self-contained guest/staff apartment. Set over two floors, it contains a living room, kitchen with stores, three bedrooms and a bathroom.

There is also a small basement which houses a wine cellar and storage rooms. The estate has a walled garden of about 1ac which is home to an orchard with old apple varieties.

Courtyard

Close to the house is a cut-stone and brick courtyard with staff cottages. Five stables stand in their original condition with timber-lined walls and ceilings, along with a tack room, a groom's room and a feed room.

A coach house accommodates storage and workshop space, a gardener's room, tool house, apple house, farm office, fuel store and potting shed.

A modern five-bay multi-purpose shed was erected to facilitate the newly installed wood-chip heating system.

A single-story gate lodge at the entrance to the property is in need of refurbishment.

"Ballybrada is a mini-estate rather than a farm," says auctioneer Marcus Magnier of Colliers International, who is handling the sale along with Sherry FitzGerald Country Homes.

"As land in south Tipperary is making €15,000 to €20,000/ac, this property is very good value."

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