On the Titanic trail

WILL a rocker come to roost in a Cobh house with a role in Ireland’s maritime past?

Carrig House in one of the harbour town's best settings is up for sale with Sherry FitzGerald, and could be returned to quality living uses.

While West Cork generally attracts the rich and the famous, those in search of a pad on the other side of Cork city might fall for the lure of this buy, which has a seemingly low price guide of €450,000-plus, although the place needs lots of TLC and further spending.

Singer Morrissey, of the band The Smiths, bought similar vintage house in Cobh for his mother over a year ago, paying around €850,000 for the fully renovated house, which is known as the Manse.

That period detached home was restored by estate agent Victoria Murphy, who briefly flirted with Cobh and a house with harbour views, before relocating back to Kinsale.

Cobh itself has some of Munster's finest Victorian buildings, a legacy from its British naval days, with whole terraces of well-preserved architecturally distinguished buildings.

Dating back to this hey-day is Carrig House, built in 1850 for a local merchant John Atkins.

It left family hands in 1890, and by 1920 it was bought for use as the American Consulate an important development, given the role played by Cobh/Queenstown in transatlantic shipping at the time.

Cobh is known worldwide because of its 1912 Titanic connections, and victims of the Lusitania are buried in Cobh, while survivors continued their passage through Queenstown as well.

This house features on the town's Titanic trail which recalls the splendour days of transatlantic visits, and the town is once more back on the itineraries of calling cruise liners.

Carrig House was bought in 1933 by the Cork Vocational Education Committee and was extended for use as a school, and latterly as a gael scoil.

Carrig is one of Cobh town's most eye-catching properties, seen here in its glorious setting in an aerial photograph, facing east and south towards Roches Point and over Haulbowline where Irish Steel has now gone quiet.

Carrig House is up for sale with a down-to-earth price. The 450,000 being sought by Brian Edwards of DTZ Sherry FitzGerald, reflects its need for significant overhaul, which, as it is a listed building, will be costly and time-consuming because of the various specifications.

The two-storey property has about over 6,000 sq ft of space, plus 630 sq ft in a basement section, and there is a pretty gate lodge of 350 sq ft, all on a pivotal 0.7 acre site by the entrance to the town.

Cobh's population is around 10,000, and it has a rail link to Cork city. Though recently economically depressed and hit by job closures, it is set to grow as a residential location.

Future uses for Carrig House, which has witnessed good times and bad, could be as a private home, a guest house or some other commercial entity.

It is this split role which has it on the market with Sherry FitzGerald's Cork city offices, as well as with their DTZ commercial arm.

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