Designer Jane Carroll’s Georgian home in Blackrock for €1.1m

House formerly owned by Truelock gunsmith family has been refurbished and extended

This article is over 5 years old
Address: 64 Carysfort Avenue Blackrock Co Dublin
Price: €1,100,000
Agent: Hunters

In the 18th century affairs of honour were settled among the gentlemen of the day wielding pistols at dawn. In 1777, at a meeting in Clonmel, a committee of Irish aristocrats drew up a duelling code known as the Irish Code Duello, which was then adopted as the official rulebook of duelling throughout the first world.

So popular was duelling at that time – with Phoenix Park a favourite killing field – there were 19 companies in Dublin who produced pistols.

One such enterprise was run by the Truelock family – immortalised by Joyce in Ulysses and also by Jonathan Swift in The Art of Punning.

Number 64 Carysfort Avenue, a double-fronted Georgian property dating from 1824, was home to gunsmith William Marshall Truelock, who switched career once men of honour decided to settle their differences by means other than firearms.


Today the property is home to textile designer Jane Carroll, a creator of unique children’s textiles and wrapping paper, which she sells in her Blackrock shop Jane Carroll Design. After studying in NCAD with close friends Orla Kiely and Paula Flynn, Carroll cut her cloth with Terence Conran before returning to Ireland to establish her own business.

Carroll's children's bicycle helmet covers – Happy Headbangers – were listed as the Sunday Times Best Gadget in 2013.

Along with her husband, solicitor Peter Duff, Carroll bought the property 20 years ago. "It needed a complete overhaul then," says Carroll, "All the windows were aluminium and many of the period features were gone."

The kitchen, which was then in an L-shape, was opened out into what is now a spacious square, and the heart of this pretty and eclectic home. Hand-painted in duck-egg blue with an Aga as the focal point, it carries out onto a sunken terrace in the garden.

In 2005, the couple added an extension and the property now has 217sq m (2,355sq ft) of floor space. A formal dining-cum-livingroom was added on the ground floor alongside a study and a master suite upstairs. There is a verdant feel to the diningroom as the leaves from towering silver birch add a wall of green through the windows.

To the front of the property is a formal drawing room – in the past this was laid out as two small rooms which Carroll amalgamated. The installation of a Velux window throws lots of light onto the array of fine antiques which came from Carroll’s childhood home, Kilternan Lodge (a Georgian manor which sold earlier this year).

Opposite is a bedroom which overlooks the neat gravelled garden to the front of the house.

Upstairs are three further bedrooms. “This area was one large room with ivy growing on the internal walls when we bought, so we carved the space into bedrooms,” says Carroll.

The property has two designated parking spaces to the rear – a contra deal when the Blackrock Business Park behind it was constructed. Carysfort Avenue is notorious for a dearth of car spaces. There is also pedestrian access to the lane from the garden.

The rear garden, though not large (a good chunk was used in the extension), is laid out with a small lawn and sunken patio with old flag stones. Of interest are olive and apple trees, and an unusual twisty baby tree.

This Georgian gem in turnkey condition (though one of the bathrooms could do with a re-grout) is on the market through Hunters with an asking price of €1.1 million.

Elizabeth Birdthistle

Elizabeth Birdthistle

Elizabeth Birdthistle, a contributor to The Irish Times, writes about property, fine arts, antiques and collectables