€345k Georgian apartment in Rathmichael has been home to barons, brothers and writers

The morning rooms of Old Connaught House have become a two-bedroom apartment

  • Address: 13 Old Connaught House, Old Connaught, Ferndale Road, Rathmichael, Co Dublin A98 CK26
  • Price: € 345,000
  • Agent: SherryFitzGerald

If you fancy living in an area where the neighbours get together for tennis matches and the writing of a murder-mystery novel, then an apartment within the grand proportions of Old Connaught House in Rathmichael may be a novel place to look.

To relieve boredom last March, resident Alan Grainger, who had been cocooning since the beginning of the pandemic, invited fellow residents via email to help the author write a murder-mystery thriller with him.

Seven residents took him up on the offer to relay-write it, each contributing a chapter to the book, The Secrets of Beacon Court. Mr Grainger’s three daughters each wrote a chapter via email from their homes in Dublin, Dunmore East and London. Each contributor was also invited to write a suitable ending with the final version selected by an independent party, he told RTÉ.

Published under the nom de plume Lotta Vokes it has been published on Amazon with the group having written a second book, Naked in Nenagh, composed by 16 writers, and a third book is on the way.

Living room.
Living room

Set on eight acres, Old Connaught House, a Georgian property that dates from 1784, is a much-storied home, its own history worthy of being set to fiction.

Soon after construction it became the home of Lord William Conyngham Plunket, the first Baron Plunket and Lord High Chancellor of Ireland.


 Through the 1920s and 1930s it was the home of Terence Conyngham Plunket, the 6th Baron Plunket, and his wife, Dorothé, daughter of Hollywood actor Fannie Ward, often described as the “eternal flapper” and star of Cecile B De Mille’s The Cheat.

The glamorous couple mixed in the best circles, spending the season in London and Paris, and also frequented Hollywood parties.

Tinseltown disaster

It was while on a visit to Tinseltown that disaster struck. They had been invited to dinner by the American media tycoon William Randolph Hearst at his famous San Simeon estate. He had sent a private plane to collect them, but it crashed in fog, killing the pair. One of their orphaned sons, Patrick, would later become master of the royal household at Buckingham Palace.

The house was sold to the Christian Brothers in the 1940s; it was purchased by Town Park Developments in 1999, and converted into apartments. In total there are some 50 units on the grounds; 24 in the big house and the rest in a modern block.

Housed in the former morning rooms of the ground floor, number 13 is a single-aspect, ground-floor, two-bedroom apartment that overlooks the lawns, the tennis courts that residents have access to, and the sea at Bray.

The property has an open-plan living area with a fireplace, a kitchen with vanilla coloured units and polished black granite worktops.

The rooms all have six-over-six pane timber sash windows and 12 ft ceilings. There are two double bedrooms and the apartment extends to 68sq m (731sq ft). The C1 BER residence, which has gas-fired heating, is asking €345,000 through agents SherryFitzGerald.