Monday 21 October 2019

A word with author Liam Gaul

Liam Gaul
Liam Gaul

WEXFORD historian and author Liam Gaul talks to David Tucker about his forthcoming book 'Johnstown Castle - A History':

Do you have a personal connection connection with Johnstown Castle?

I worked for Teagasc in the Analytical Services at Johnstown Castle for 30 years and many times thought about the castle and its stories, its history down through the centuries and the tales it could relate if it could only speak.

So your book will do this, in effect enabling the castle to tell its tales?

To write the history of the castle and grounds was the obvious project for me. With this in mind, my forthcoming book takes a look back to Norman and Cromwellian times and Cornelius Grogan and his involvement with the 1798 Insurrection and across the centuries to comparatively recent times.

How recently did anyone live within its walls?

The Grogan family lived there down to the mid-twentieth century when the estate was gifted to the Irish government by Victor Lakin,

Who were the last full-time residents?

The last full-time residents were Lord and Lady Maurice FitzGerald. Lord Maurice died in 1901 and was survived by his wife Lady Adelaide FitzGerald until her death in 1942 aged 82 years of age. She took responsibility for the running of the estate assisted by her cousin, Captain Ronald Forbes.Tragedy struck the FitzGerald's with the death of their only son, Captain Gerald Hugh FitzGerald, killed in action on 13 September, 1914, in The Great War a century ago.

When will your book be on the streets?

'Johnstown Castle - A History, published by The History Press Ireland', will be in all bookshops by the end of November or early December. This is my fifth published book since Masters of Irish Music, which appeared in 2006.

Enniscorthy Guardian