Efforts are under way to conserve history at a unique site in Crossabeg.
The Irish Landmark Trust aims to conserve the lodges of Saunderscourt, where a previous rescue mission was carried out on the central archway of the estate. The residence, which dates back to the 17th century was once the home of the Saunders family but has gone throw various hands since then.
The main house has long since vanished but the elaborate entrance structure still stands, featuring exquisitely carved classical columns, framing an archway which radiate four curved walls and two residential lodges, dating from the 1700s. The ensemble, with its evocation of Palladio is unique in Ireland.
A spokesperson for the project said: 'The quality of the detail, the sophistication of the plan, and the beauty of the mixture of brick and limestone merit the care of the Irish Landmark Trust, which can transform the building from its ruined state to sustainable life. Failure to do so would represent a literally irreparable loss to Wexford and Ireland.'
Between 2005 and 2016, the Trush conserved the central arch and carried out urgent stabilising repairs to the lodges at a cost of €279,000. This was funded by Wexford County Council, the Heritage Council, the Irish Georgian Society, the Department of Environment, local government and private donations.
The architectural plans for the restoring of the lodges are new being prepared. It is estimated that this will cost approximately €320,000.
The picnic was attended by trustees and invited guests.