Elegant house with 100-acre organic estate

IF you’re going to go for an estate purchase, then Tipperary is probably a good choice.

Beloved of the bloodstock industry and almost mid-way in the country, it’s also laden with grand old houses and rolling estates. And right now, prices couldn’t be better.

However, the elegant and almost perfect Ballybrada House isn’t cheap at €6 million, the guide price it has been given by Colliers Jackson Stops, but heavy-hitters might find the investment worth the money.

The old saw goes that when it comes to land, they aren’t making any more of it — and in the case of Ballybrada, there’s a 100-acre organic estate attached.

Less than four miles from Cahir, the house has views over the Suir Valley and the Knockmealdowns in the distance.

The centre of the property is a well-maintained Victorian manse, approached by a long driveway from the road. The ground floor has four formal reception rooms with open fireplaces and bay windows while the second floor provides five bedrooms, two of which have dressing rooms, and two family bathrooms.

The adjoining staff wing has another five bedrooms, a recreation room and main bathroom. Also included is a family room and kitchen with a range of ancillary rooms opening on to a courtyard, and a basement storage area with wine cellar.

There are some fine cut-stone buildings close to the house, and the former staff cottages in the house’s courtyard offer redevelopment potential. A two-storey coach house is in perfect original condition and has five adjoining stables, with the original doors and cast iron mangers.

Part of the coach house building on the garden side comes with an apple store, tool room, farm office, fuel store and a potting shed.

The land has been farmed organically for the past 25 years, and has been the subject of research by a UCC team, which has discovered rare varieties of insects in situ. The property is also home to more than 50 bird species, including kestrels, barn owls, tree creepers and jays.

Bounding the Suir, and with 1.2km of fishing rights, (which provide salmon and trout in season), the land is also crossed by the Tonogue river and a number of smaller streams.

About a third of the estate is under mature timber, with 60 acres of arable land available: the rest is in pleasure gardens and lawn.

A modern five-bay shed for cattle and machinery has been constructed — so it’s more than suitable for a herd of pedigree cattle.

According to Jack Hazel of Colliers, Ballybrada House is a “very special property. You could get away with not seeing the rest of the world here, if you didn’t want to”, he says.

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