Thursday 17 October 2019

Horticulturalist's former home - a tranquil oasis - goes on the market for €875,000

7 Morehampton Lane, Donnybrook, Dublin 4 €875,000

7 Morehampton Lane
7 Morehampton Lane

Words by Katy McGuinness

Morehampton Lane is the first turn to the left off Herbert Park as you drive down from the traffic lights at the crossroads with Morehampton Road. It's one of those discreet Dublin mews lanes that you may have registered but never have had reason to go down. This must suit the people who live there very well, located as they are just a couple of minutes' walk from the shops and restaurants of Donnybrook, with the city centre accessible by regular buses and within easy walking and cycling distance, yet quietly tucked away.

And of course they are on the doorstep of Herbert Park, with its tennis courts and playgrounds, where local dogs and their owners meet for a morning social, the dogs tormented by the squirrels that are always just a little too quick for them and by the tantalising prospect of those tasty ducks in the pond.

No.7 Morehampton Lane is a tranquil oasis, home to the renowned horticulturalist and photographer Koraley Northen until her death earlier this year. Northen was a Canadian who fell in love with an Irishman, Don Hamilton-Northen, and had been living in Ireland for many decades. She became an Irish citizen 30 years ago and was very involved in the world of Irish horticulture, mentoring younger gardeners through her involvement in the Garden and Landscape Designers' Association. She is also remembered for her active networking through the Women in Business organisation.

Koraley and Don were the first people to live in No.7, moving in soon after it was built in 1978. The house sits behind electronic gates, and there is off-street parking for two cars, as well as additional parking immediately outside the gates.

The garden to the front is lush and green, with subtle colour. According to a friend of Koraley's, who is now her executor, she designed it to be a succession garden, with interest in terms of colour and foliage throughout the year.

"Koraley loved nature and her beautiful garden was her true passion. She had huge knowledge and wisdom when it came to horticulture, and she was always happy to share that with other gardeners."

The house itself is in good decorative order, and more spacious, at 157 sqm, than one would expect from the outside. On the ground floor there's an elegant living room to the front, with the separate kitchen and formal dining room to the rear; both open out into a sun room which in turn leads to the equally enchanting south-west facing back garden.

There's a handy guest lavatory and some useful storage off the entrance hall.

Upstairs, there are three bedrooms, all doubles. The main bedroom has an en suite in deep green, while the family bathroom suite is that '70s favourite, avocado - colours, of course, highly suitable for a keen gardener.

One of the bedrooms to the front of the house was Koraley's study, and home to her collection of several hundred books on all aspects of planting and horticulture.

There is further useful storage space in an attic accessed from the first floor landing.

Koraley and Don, who died a few years before his wife, did not have children, and this is an executor sale on behalf of her siblings in Canada.

Whoever buys No.7 will no doubt wish to modernise the interior - those green bathroom suites will probably be the first thing to go - and to improve on the existing BER of E1. There is the potential to extend the house to the back, should more living space be required. But when it comes to the garden they will inherit the joy of a beautifully-planted oasis that will only become more beguiling with every year that passes, and should change nothing at all.

Era: 1978
Size: 157sqm
Agent: Young's (01) 497 5581
Viewing: By appointment

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