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Thursday 26 April 2018

'Quiet Man' cottage is made a protected building

What remains of the White O’ Morn cottage that featured in 'The Quiet Man' starring John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara
What remains of the White O’ Morn cottage that featured in 'The Quiet Man' starring John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara
How the cottage looked during filming
Caroline Crawford

Caroline Crawford

A dilapidated cottage made famous by 'The Quiet Man' movie has been granted protected status by Galway County Council.

White O' Morn, in Maam, Connemara, was officially placed on the council's Register of Protected Structures this week following a long campaign.

The process to put the remote dwelling under State protection began earlier this year. It was completed this week when councillors voted unanimously to add the structure to the register.

The campaign to have the cottage granted protected status had attracted thousands of supporters, with some including ambitious plans for the future of the property.

However, local councillor Tom Welby urged supporters of the campaign to be wary of such plans.

"I've seen plans for doing up the cottage that include underground parking," he said.

"I'm concerned that people may be donating to campaigns that are never going to happen. They might not realise what the reality on the ground is."

Mr Welby said the cottage was at such a level of dilapidation that it would need massive works to restore it.

"The cottage is privately owned and it's not up to the council to carry out any refurbishment," he said.

"What this move means is that if any works are carried out, a conservation architect and a conservation officer from Galway County Council will have to be involved."

He added that he would love to see the cottage restored, but warned that this would take a substantial amount of money.

"It has huge potential and I would love to see it developed, but we have to be cautious about the types of developments some people are suggesting," he said.

Last month, the cottage became the focus of a bitter ownership battle. While it has been owned by Greg Ebbit since 1985, local man Patrick Keane, who has farmed the land for two decades, asserted a claim to the property under squatters rights.

Irish Independent

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