HOW would you describe Apsley House?
Well to start, there’s its location, smack bang in the middle of Killumney village but with an acre of ancient tree-lined grounds shrouding it from the road.
And on the first day of September, with a strong sun and a gentle breeze soughing through its trees, this is the most peaceful, perfect place.
But then, there’s the house. A simple, Georgian square build, it’s had a long, rectangular Victorian addition and some 20th/21st century interventions.
The latest work involved removing the old lime plaster to show the old stone underneath, but what it also unearthed is a number of settlement cracks and leans – something which would have to be checked out by an engineer, but in fairness, the house is still standing after nearly 200 years.
It’s an elegant house on the approach, with deep sash windows in a row facing the drive and turning towards a simple, arched doorway.
This house will needs lots of work, but it has the potential to create a very impressive dwelling. The key, however, would be in the cost.
And with this in mind and the guide price of €750,000 through auctioneer, Brendan Bowe, the house is offered at a low level for an acre of ground in the centre of a Greater Cork village.
But buyers would need to be aware of biting off more than they can chew – the house is 4,500 square feet of high-ceilinged, period space that needs a makeover in most rooms and which would gobble money in the short, or long term.
The other disadvantage is that the property is set up against the walls of the former Killumney creamery premises, with an attached building and a 20’ high wing of what once must have been a defensive or military building on the Bride River.
And there’s that sense in the house too of an institutional use, particularly in the extended area, with it’s big rooms and back hallway, almost as if the house was divided in two.
But those are the cons – the pros are that the house is now on the market at half of what it would have been even a year ago.
The land is valuable long term and even now, there would be a case for placing a new dwelling further up the site to capitalise on the aspect. Because this is a gorgeous setting that will seduce those who come a-looking.
A sale will send a frisson through the neighbourhood, which gives an idea of the rarity of the offering.
Viewers will make up their own minds about the property, but anyone shopping for a stand-alone house with a similar budget, should definitely go see.
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved