EIGHTEENTH CENTURY MANSION, PARK, GARDENS AND FAMINE MUSEUM
Strokestown House is an eighteenth century Palladian mansion, home of the Packenham Mahon family from 1653 until 1979. The House is unique in that it retains all of its original furnishings and can be seen by guided tour.
The Great Irish famine of the 1840s is now regarded as the single greatest social disaster of 19th century Europe. Between 1845 and 1850, when blight devastated the potato crop, in excess of two million people – almost one-quarter of the entire population – either died or emigrated.
The Famine Museum is located in the original Stable Yards of Strokestown Park House. It was designed to commemorate the history of the famine of Ireland and in some way to balance the history of the 'Big House'.
When what remained of the original property was purchased, an archive of papers relating to the management of the estate during the 1840s came to light. This unique collection of documents includes many haunting pleas from starving tenants on the estate and the response they received. It is now regarded as the best private archive on the Great Irish Famine in the world.
The six-acre Walled Gardens have been faithfully restored to their original splendour and give an insight into horticultural practices and garden architecture from the 1740s to the present day. The Georgian peach house and vinery date back to the 1780s and offer exceptional views of the estate and gardens.
The wonderful Herbaceous Border is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the longest in Britain and Ireland. Other beautiful features include a formal Rose Garden, a wonderful Pergola, and a wildflower Garden and a Fernery, to name but a few.
The Georgian Fruit & Vegetable Garden is now growing old varieties of fruit and vegetables using traditional methods and its produce is used in the preparation of home-cooked food in the Strokestown Park Restaurant.
Strokestown is 144km (90 miles) from Dublin and 23km (14 miles) from Longford on the N5. Strokestown is also on many bus routes. There is a bus entrance from the N5 which is directly across from the R368 (Roscommon Road Intersection).