Clonakilty’s Easter Rising

CLONAKILTY’S Glebe House, on the town’s landmark Emmet Square, has had its Easter Rising.

The Georgian glebe residence, next to a former rectory in the historic heart of the award-winning town, has been restored from top to bottom.

A year-long renovation project at the Glebe finishes this week, with an open house planned for neighbours and interested groups as the house comes on the market.

Glebe House was bought over a year ago for €1 million, and comes back up for sale after its huge investment, for the almost same €1 million sum, guiding €950,000 as the company is developing new contemporary-styled homes in the former secret gardens behind this pristine Georgian townhouse.

Developers Bobby and Maria Hilliard, with Hillback Developments partner Micheal O'Crualaoí, took on the Glebe House gamble after the property had been more than a year on the open market.

Some of their previous period property projects included historic Carrigbarre in Cork city by St Fin Barre's Cathedral, and the Sand Quay mill conversion apartments in Clonakilty.

"It needed someone with the vision to see what could be done, and as well as that confidence and experience was essential," says auctioneer Henry O'Leary of the Property Partners franchise, who has just slapped a 'sale agreed' sign on the late Noel Redding's Clonakilty seaside home at Ardfield, also for €1 million.

Mr O'Leary handled the sale of the Glebe last time in its raw, off-putting state, and now has the easier task of showing a gleaming Georgian house, ready to move into, either for owner-occupation or exclusive guest accommodation with €500,000 of capital allowances if leased out.

Set into the grander, south western corner of the architectural jewel that is Emmet Square, it has about 3,600 sq ft of supremely comfortable space on three levels, with five en suite bedrooms.

There are there's three reception rooms, and a superlative kitchen by carpenter Séamus Walsh.

This is an unmatchable address starting with Glebe House and Emmet Square, then add Clonakilty and west Cork and you have the equivalent of getting all the bars in a line on the property slot machines location, location, location.

The house's finish and decor by Maria Hilliard matches the most fastidious of expectations. The drenching power showers have been fibre-glassed behind the tiling by Pat O'Neill of FGI in Carrigaline for guaranteed impermeability. Both the heating and hot water is pressurised, pumped and pampering. Rooms have hand-trimmed bespoke carpets, and windows are restored or have matching new sash frames.

Instead of the once wild and land-locked acre behind, the Glebe is being sold with a smaller private, elevated walled garden.

The Glebe's former coach house and annexe, with rear access, has been converted to two further residential units. And, since the developers secured a second access to the previously land-locked acre by buying a neighbour's garden, eight individual architect-designed houses are under construction with a final phase of 18 units currently with An Bord Pleanála.

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