Sheppard’s to auction contents of Capard House

Auction to take place on-site at the 13-bed Greek-revival Georgian mansion in Laois

Sheppard’s has announced a two-day auction in September of the contents of Capard House near Rosenallis, Co Laois. Both the viewing and the auction itself will take place “on-site” – a 13-bedroom Greek-revival Georgian mansion in the foothills of the Slieve Bloom mountains. The event looks set to become the biggest country house auction since summer 2012 when 13,000 people flocked to the sale of the contents of Mount Congreve in Co Waterford conducted jointly by Christie’s and Mealy’s.

Capard House has been owned for the past 25 years by Dublin businessman John Farrington who runs an antique jewellery business on Drury Street and is also a well-known collector of art and antiques. The house – on 100 acres – has recently been sold for an undisclosed price. It went on the market last year with an asking price of €5.5 million.

Auctioneer Philip Sheppard said the auction of the contents would be “a major event” involving some 1,000 lots – including “historic pictures, antiques and works of art” – and is expected to raise more than €1 million with interest expected from Irish and international collectors. Three days of viewing at the house will begin on Saturday, September 19th and the auction will take place on Tuesday and Wednesday, September 22nd and 23rd.

Mr Farrington bought Capard House in 1990 for 167,500 punts and during the last quarter of a century has lavishly restored the estate. The auction is also likely to draw visitors curious to see one of the most opulent houses in the midlands. Originally built between 1798 and 1810 for the Pigott family, it includes an eight-bedroom main house and an adjacent five-bedroom east wing with a combined living space of 1,540sq m (16,576sq ft).


Some 37 acres surrounding the house have been landscaped to create spectacular gardens and parkland. Mountain streams have been harnessed to feed a series of man-made ornamental lakes and ponds. Sheppard’s said it would make provision for 1,000 temporary car park spaces at the site and would also licence various catering facilities. Capard House is about 9km from Mountmellick, 20km from Portlaoise, and 85km from Dublin via the M7. The nearest hotel (about 8km) is the five-star Ballyfin – Ireland’s most expensive.