Unpacking the rich history of the Lords of Kerry & Lixnaw

Lixnaw is looking back to its proud history as the very centre of power of almost the entire county ahead of a big conference in the heart of the village examining the story of one important clan: The Fitzmaurices.

The Fitzmaurices: Lords of Kerry and Lixnaw takes place in the Ceolann Cultural Centre in the North Kerry village on Sunday, April 28, next from 10.30am until 3pm in an entirely free event being hosted by the Lixnaw Heritage and Historical group.

Members were delighted to share a little of the Fitzmaurice story with EU Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan on his recent visit there; bringing the Kilkenny man out to the Old Court - once the seat of the Fitzmaurice gentry - to impart a sense of the gentrified highs of old.

It proved a great occasion to highlight the work of the newly-formed Lixnaw Heritage and Historical group, launching into their mission to preserve the Lixnaw past in its wider context with an event that will bring some of the foremost Fitzmaurice experts to Lixnaw; including Listowel's Kay Caball.

Kay is currently writing the history of the last Fitzmaurice Earls of Kerry, Lord Barons of Lixnaw: Thomas, the first Earl, William the second Earl and third Earl, Francis Thomas.

Historian Rosemary Roughter will also address the conference; drawing on her extraordinary knowledge of the life of Lady Arbella Denny nee Fitzmaurice, who was born in 1707 in the Old Court in Lixnaw and went onto become one of the great philanthropists of 18th Century Dublin; and was also a relative of British Prime Minister William Petty through her maternal side.

John Knightly is the other speaker, a historian who completed his doctorate on the Godfreys of Milltown and is a member of the Irish Georgian Society - in Lixnaw to share some of his expertise on the landed gentry, focusing of course on the local notables of old.