Monday 9 December 2019

Squared with the theatrical

Exterior of 34 Darthmouth Square, Dublin
Exterior of 34 Darthmouth Square, Dublin
Park at the centre of Dartmouth Sq, Dublin

IN his book 'All for Hercuba', the actor and writer Michael McLiammoir leaves floral auctioneer's brochures for dead when he describes Dartmouth Square in Ranelagh as being: "close to the canal, and red brick, slate roofs, art-silk curtains and neat railings backed by laurel and box made a daily festival for our eyes – so demure and inevitable it all was, even with the wild skies above and the water flowing among the rushes close by."

Constructed in the 1890s in red brick and granite, Dartmouth was the city's last great Victorian square and quickly became infested with theatrical types.

Residents included the actor Barry FitzGerald, balladeer Luke Kelly, Power O'Mara of the Globe Theatre and the dramatic pairing of Hilton Edwards and Micheal MacLiammoir who resided at number 61 under the watchful eye of their landlady Lena Long ("stout, amusing and shrewd, a stubborn Unionist, a passionate Philistine.")

In recent years Dartmouth has seen many of its two-storey over-basement terrace homes being turned back from flats into private residences.

Number 34 has just been brought for sale with an asking price of €1.25m and is laid out in a style which will suit either use.

Original features are intact and include ornate ceiling plasterwork and trim, timber floors, ornate marble fireplaces in the three main receptions and cast iron versions in the bathrooms.

The self-contained ground floor has three bedrooms, two receptions and a kitchen.

Up the granite steps is the ground floor with two interlinking receptions, a kitchenette and a bathroom and the upper floor has three more bedrooms with another kitchenette on the return.

A big attraction here is the park opposite. The agent is Mason Estates (01-2951001)

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