Clonalis House : The ‘New’ House
The ‘New’ Clonalis House was constructed by The Rt Hon Charles Owen O’Conor Don MP HML in 1878 to the design of the well known Victorian architect Pepys Cochrell. This property replaced an earlier residence on Clonalis Estate dating from approximately 1750, which the family considered unhealthy by the late 19th century, as it lay close to the banks of the River Suck and frequently flooded.
The ‘New’ House combines characteristics of both Queen Anne and Italianate architectural styles. Contrary to the perception of Victorian architecture as being rather dark and gloomy the main reception and bedrooms of Clonalis all face south west and with large windows capture all available light, making the property a bright and airy residence.
The ‘New’ Clonalis House now serves the dual purpose of being a family home and a major repository of heritage and history, containing correspondence, heirlooms, objet d’art and portraits of the O’Conors over the past 600 years. The Clonalis Library, containing some 7000 volumes, is widely considered to be one of the best collections in private ownership in Ireland.