Tommy Barker.

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Dougie Howlett's 'other' Munster home for sale

Resales are as rare as hens teeth in the Lindville estate on Cork’s Blackrock Road, writes Tommy Barker.

Dougie Howlett's 'other' Munster home for sale

  • Lindville, Ballintemple, Cork

    Price:Size:Bedrooms:Bathrooms:BER:

    Resales are as rare as hens teeth in the Lindville estate on Cork’s Blackrock Road, writes Tommy Barker.

    After five years in occupation, and to some dismay, the vendors of 54 Lindville have moved out, and are making their way back home to their native southern hemisphere after a 12 year soujourn in Cork. They leave No 54 Lindville freshly painted, unfurnished and ready for new occupation.

    But, even though they’ve gone, memories remain and, perhaps you’ve heard tell of them, outside of the property sphere? There’s Douglas Howlett, better know as Dougie, the former Munster rugby star, who turns 41 years of age next weekend; his wife Monique, who’s an artist, and the couple’s five children, most of them born during the great Howlett Irish tour and travels adventure.

    The highly acclaimed Dougie Howlett, a former top try-scoring All Black during his Kiwi prime years and a daunting World Cup player too, came to Irish shores to play for play for Munster in 2008. He made a promising enough ‘start’, being on the victorious 2008 Heineken Cup-winning Munster team.

    During his playing years, another highlight was captaining Munster in 2012-2013, after Paul O’Connell stepped down, and he retired from active playing in 2013 after an injury. He then leapt neatly from the pitch into a role on Munster’s board and into business, as Munster’s Head of Commercial and Marketing, for a fruitful five or six years, during which time he also competed a MBA in UCC.

    To some upset, he announced the Howlett family’s decison to return to New Zealand earlier this year, and is now packed up, and departed the field, the city and the province.

    Departed from Ballintemple, too, where the couple had first rented a home in the 2000-built upmarket Lindville development, and five years ago they jumped to purchase, when No 54 Lindville came up for sale.

    Despite it not having the sort of size garden you’d think an All Black and a Munster man might like to kick a ball around on with the kids, the family-friendly and familiar nature of the setting appealed hugley, and they purchased swiftly.

    No 54 last appeared on these pages in September 2014, guiding €625,000 on launch: it popped up on the Price Register by December that same year, at €736,000: clearly someone brave stood their bidding ground against the Kiwi for quite a bit of counter-offer action?

    Now, No 54’s fresh to market, and freshly repainted, more or less a blank canvas for next owners to imagine themselves and their possessions, in situ.

    It’s for sale with agent Sheila O’Flynn of Sherry FitzGerald Cork, who guides the 2,240 sq ft six-bed home at €865,000. She steadfastly stayed schtum about who the owners were — despite it being an open secret in the area.

    West-facing, on a corner site just off the old avenue lined with century-plus old trees which fill its views from the front, it’s an example of the ‘B’ design type, designed by Roderick Hogan Architects in the late 1990s and which spawned a raft of faux Victorian replicas, both one-offs and small developments across Cork and further afield for at least a further decade.

    It has its six bedrooms on the top two floors, three at each level, with the en suite master bedrooom on the very top floor, facing the front, while three at the mid level are all doubles, one with two dressing rooms, plus a good main bathroom.

    At ground is a hall, main double-aspect reception to the right with parquet floor and a deep bay window with sliding sash windows.

    Behind is a white gloss contemporary kitchen, with black granite tops, metro splashback tiles, parquet floor and range cooker, adjoining a dining area with banquette seating. Down then a few steps is a parquet floored family room, with stove, high ceiling and patio doors to the rear garden, decking and barbecue area.

    The modest-sized walled back garden has a wide deck, small lawn, raised beds, and two sheds, one timber the other block built, and the front has good perimeter planting and off-street parking.

    Perhaps even as a welcoming gesture from the next door neighbour’s back garden, a vine has crept its way over the dividing wall, leaving bunches of grapes out ripeing right now for No 54’s visitors to sample: a good Kiwi vintage?

    VERDICT:

    Only six resales recorded in the past decade at Lindville,and just one made over €750,000, so the neighbours will be watchng to see just who’ll fill the Howlett boots.

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