This is one of the ‘dodging posts’ that I mentioned recently and it’s doing its best to slither away again but I’m taking it by the scruff of the neck with a harsh determination.
It relates to a place in the West of Co. Waterford, called The Towers at Ballysaggartmore and I think I have found it very difficult to write because it is largely about facade and I don’t like facade very much.
The Towers, which are two ornate gate lodges, are located high up in a woodland a few miles from the lovely town of Lismore. They are about as unexpected as it gets and are said to have been built around 1834 by an Anglo-Irish landlord, Arthur Keily-Ussher, as a prelude to an extravagant mansion that Keily-Ussher never built because he ran out of money building the two amazing gate lodges.
Keily-Ussher had a demense of approximately 8,000 acres and part of that included a large but plain family residence, Ballysaggartmore House, which was destroyed by arson during the Civil War in Ireland in the early 1920s.
So, The Towers, which are hauntingly beautiful, are basically architectural follies that lead nowhere.
Over the years, I have found myself drawn back to the place and never cease to be awe-stricken that such grandeur stands way up a woodland path. Here’s how The Towers looked the last time I saw them back in September.