Swiss Cottage, Tipperary, Ireland

The Swiss Cottage near Cahir in Tipperary is probably the finest example of a cottage orné/ornamental cottage on the island of Ireland. The cottage orné style was part of a movement of rustic stylised cottages as part of the Romantic movement in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. This form of romanticism favoured thatched roofs and ornate visible timberwork. The design of the Swiss Cottage is attributed to John Nash, one of the foremost architects during the Georgian and Regency eras, designing a huge number of properties across Ireland, Wales and England. I previously featured Witley Court in Worcestershire on the blog along with the recently posted gatehouses of Rockingham Demesne in Roscommon both attributed to Nash. It was built between 1810 and 1814 for Lord and Lady Caher the then estate owners Richard Butler 1st Earl of Glengall and 10th Baron Caher and his wife Emily Jefffreys from Blarney Castle. The cottage has some fantastic wallpapers, containing some of the first commercially produced Parisian wallpaper by Joseph Dufour and company. Though the house has two ‘bedrooms’ its not believed that Lord and Lady Caher ever actually stayed at the cottage it was more so a place to entertain guests. The cottage was in the ownership of the Butler family until 1961, it was then bought by the Irish land Comission and sold back to its caretaker, Eugene Heavey, for a nominal sum. Eugene and his brother John looked after it until 1980 when John passed away. The cottage quickly fell into disrepair and was taken into the care of the OPW in 1985, and opened to the public in 1989, which was about 2 years before I first saw it as a child.

GPS: GPS: 52.35729, -7.92362

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