€2.175m contract for Killarney House restoration
Money will see final phase of work to restore historic buildings and pleasure gardens
Killarney House in Killarney National Park: The refurbished house, in a scenic setting, will function as a visitors’ centre forthe national park and it is hoped it will become an added tourist attraction for the town. Photograph: Eamonn Keogh/MacMonagle, Killarney
The final phase of the restoration of historic buildings and gardens at Killarney House in Co Kerry has been announced by Minister for Heritage Jimmy Deenihan. Work is to begin immediately on the €2.175 million contract that will protect some 90 jobs involved in the ongoing restoration of the house.
The refurbished Killarney House, in a scenic setting, will function as a visitors’ centre for Killarney National Park and it is hoped it will become an added tourist attraction for the town.
The visitor centre project will contain three distinct aspects. Firstly it will house an interpretative centre for the national park, explaining its significance and importance to the town and region including information on mountainside, woodlands, waterways and the human impact on the environment.
Secondly, as part of a new extension, there will be an exhibition space to cater for temporary displays and cultural events.
Thirdly, a number of reception rooms on the ground floor of the original house will be reinstated to accommodate original furniture, which is in storage.
The former Pleasure Grounds and gardens surrounding the house will also be restored in 2014, creating spectacular landscaped areas that will adjoin the natural areas of the park. It is planned that the gardens will provide for views linking the town to the scenery of mountain, woods and waterways.
Mr Deenihan said the house was “a jewel in the built heritage of Co Kerry” and of national importance. He predicted it would become one of the top attractions in the region.