Sunday 17 November 2019

Kildare homes may set hearts racing with rich equine history

Wavertree Kildare town, Co Kildare

Asking price: €375,000-€410,000

Agent: Conway Auctioneers (045) 522622

The living room
The living room
One of the double bedrooms
The kitchen

in the early 20th century, Colonel William Hall-Walker, a wealthy Scotsman from a famous brewing family, acquired land around Tully near Kildare town and established a stud farm.

Hall-Walker, who later became Lord Wavertree, then purchased foundation mares that led to the breeding of horses such as Minoru, the winner of the 1906 Epsom Derby. Around the same time, he created Japanese gardens that were laid out by Japanese craftsmen Tassa Eida and his son Minoru.

Tassa Eida died in 1912 on his intended return journey to Japan, and nothing was heard of the family until Brian Eida, Minoru's son, pitched up as a tourist in the late 1980s to admire the work of his grandfather. Today, the Japanese gardens are one of Ireland's leading tourist attractions.

Hall-Walker left Ireland shortly before the 1916 Rising and gifted his stud to the British government for the purpose of setting up a British National Stud. But the Tully property passed to the Irish government in 1943 and became the Irish National Stud, which now comprises 958 acres and is home to some of Ireland's leading stallions.

Lord Wavertree is remembered, though, in the name of a new residential estate on Tully Road, close to the stud and the Japanese gardens. Kelland Homes is developing 18 four-bed semi-detached and detached properties at Wavertree and launched the first 10 properties there last month. The scheme is attracting both first-time buyers with families and downsizers who want to live close to Kildare town centre, according to the selling agent.

Prices at Wavertree start at €375,000 for the Minoru, a semi-detached style named after the Epsom Derby winner, and at €410,000 for the Tully, a detached design called after the area. Both house types have 1,464 sq ft of accommodation, though additional house styles, called Eida, Walker and Derby, are planned for the remainder of the development.

Externally, the Tully and the Minoru have a slate canopy that hangs over the front bay window and a front door with side glazing. This canopy divides the coloured render to the top half of the facade from the brick to the bottom half. There is natural granite to the surrounds of the high-performance double-glazed UPVC windows and permeable paving to the front driveway. To the rear, the garden and its Steeltech shed are enclosed by blockwork walls finished in render.

Inside, there are 9ft-high ceilings throughout the ground floor and a living room up front. At the back of each house is a bespoke kitchen from Fitzgerald Kitchens. The European shaker-style units and soft-close doors are hand-painted in Farrow & Ball colours, and there are polished worktops to the units and to the peninsula, which doubles as a breakfast bar. Appliances such as a ceiling-height integrated fridge-freezer are included, as are an integrated dishwasher, a Neff double oven, a microwave, and a hob. There's also a fitted utility room off the kitchen.

Buyers at Wavertree can choose between three types of timber flooring for the kitchen/dining/family area, the living room and the utility room, and there are matt tiles to the floors and wet areas of the guest WC, the bathrooms and the ensuites.

The latter rooms are also fitted with contemporary-style white suites, large rainhead shower fittings, slimline shower trays, chrome heated towel rails, half-pedestal washbasins, and concealed cisterns. The built-in wardrobes in the bedrooms come from Fitzgerald Kitchens.

The Wavertree homes were designed to achieve an A3 BER, thanks to features such as an A-rated condensing gas boiler that provides heating which can be thermostatically controlled at multiple zones within each property. An on-demand ventilation system from Aereco delivers a constant supply of fresh indoor air, while PV panels generate top-up electricity supplies.

For commuters, Wavertree is located just north of the M7 motorway. A regular commuter train service takes travellers from Kildare town to Heuston Station in about 40 minutes, while a local bus service takes just 55 minutes to reach the city centre and 30 minutes to get to the Red Cow Luas station.

Viewings at Wavertree will be held from 2pm to 4pm tomorrow and Sunday.

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