Friday 21 September 2018

Maureen Haughey - wife of former Taoiseach Charles J Haughey - leaves €9m fortune

The former Taoiseach’s wife looks at a photograph of her husband alongside children Ciaran, Eimear, Conor and Sean at the formal announcement of the handing over of his private papers to DCU
The former Taoiseach’s wife looks at a photograph of her husband alongside children Ciaran, Eimear, Conor and Sean at the formal announcement of the handing over of his private papers to DCU
Liam Collins

Liam Collins

Maureen Haughey, wife of the former Taoiseach Charles J Haughey, has left more than €9m in her will, one of the largest personal legacies recorded in the Probate Office this year.

Papers show that Mrs Haughey, who was the daughter of Sean Lemass, divided her assets equally among her four children, Eimear, Conor, Ciaran and Sean, currently TD for Dublin Bay North.

Noted for her political shrewdness and unflappable demeanour even in the most turbulent moments of her husband's political life, she lived most of her married life in the Gandon-designed mansion, Abbeville, in Kinsealy, north County Dublin.

Following the death of Charles Haughey in 2006, she moved to a new, more manageable home on the edge of the estate close to her children.

Charlie and Maureen Haughey bought Abbeville in 1969 shortly after Mr Haughey had been re-appointed Minister for Finance in Jack Lynch's government.

In 2004, the 18th-Century mansion and 250 acres, much of it in woodlands and lakes, was the subject of a hotly contested bidding war between developers Johnny Ronan and Joe Moran.

Moran's Manor Park Homes won and paid €45m for the property to the Haughey family investment company, Larchfield Securities. But various redevelopment plans for the estate never got off the drawing board and the Haugheys remained in the house until Charlie's death.

In 2015, the Nashida family, headed by Norimasa Nishida, owner of the Japanese hotel chain Toyoko Inn International, bought the estate at a knockdown price of €5.5m from the receivers to Manor Park Homes, which was wound up in May, 2012 with debts of €135m.

Sunday Independent

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