'It's a dream come true' Laois family plan tearooms at top Slieve Blooms amenity

Lynda Kiernan

Reporter:

Lynda Kiernan

'It's a dream come true' Laois family plan tearooms at top Slieve Blooms amenity

The cottage at Glenbarrow Trail head in the Slieve Bloom Mountains

A young family are taking the big step of moving up to the Slieve Bloom Mountains, restoring a derelict cottage and opening a tearooms, and in the process providing much needed facilities for visitors.

Mark and Roisín Sherlock are midway through building a new extension to the cottage and lands they bought, beside Glenbarrow Trail Head carpark.

The carpark leads to one of the busiest visitor attractions in Laois, the spectacular Glenbarrow Waterfalls through Coillte woodlands.

Two new overflow carparks are also in the planning in Glenbarrow due to its growing popularity. Read more here. 

Landscape gardener and Portlaoise rugby player Mark is from Eyne and Roisín (nee Fitzpatrick) is from Portlaoise.

She has plenty of catering experience having previously run the Square Bar and worked in Castle Durrow for the past two years.

"Since we started work on the site we can see how busy it is with visitors. With everything that happened this year, I think people are happy to stay at home and appreciate what's in their own area.

"We hope to apply for a change of use for the cottage to a tearooms once we have the house done. Hopefully there will not be a problem with permission, it's needed so badly.  In the meantime we will get a catering trailer up there hopefully in a couple of weeks with teas and coffees and cakes," Roisín told the Leinster Express.

With two small children Darcie, 4 and Millie, 2, they are excited to make the big change to their lifestyle.

"The kids love it up there. We live in a housing estate and we had it in our heads for years. We have been up there looking at the site for so long, it's taken over three years to get this far. We can't wait to live up there, It's a dream come true," she said.

Below: Darcie and Millie help their dad on a digger at the site. Bottom: the Sherlock family.