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07 Oct 2022

Radical property changes planned for landmark Laois house

Radical property changes planned for landmark Portlaoise house

Greenville House in Portlaoise

A landmark 200 year old listed Laois house that now lies boarded up, is to get a new lease of life if a planning application is approved.

Greenville House is a two storey detached house on the Mountmellick Road in Portlaoise, facing the Dunnes Stores shopping centre.

Described in the National Inventory of Architectural Heritage as "a significant landmark", it was built in about 1830.

The site has been cleared back in recent times, and the house was sprayed with graffiti.

An application has been lodged with Laois County Council to create eight modern apartments in the house and on the land.

Applicant Shane Reilly seeks permission for: 

"a) change of use from dwelling house (record of protected structure no. 461) to 2 one-bedroom apartments, and

"b) construct 4 two bedroom apartments and 2 one-bedroom apartments, c) demolish existing outhouse, d) reconfigure site entrance and associated parking, e) bin shelter, covered bicycle rack, ESB sub-station with own access and all associated site works. All works are in the curtilage of protected structure No. 461".

The National Inventory of Architectural Heritage says that the house was likely once associated with Newpark House demesne, or with the flour mill and mill pond on the Triogue River.

"The Gibbsian surround doorcase, sometimes referred to as 'block and start' is a common regional detail also found in Church Street in Portlaoise. The house retains much of its original fabric. It is likely that the later extension to the rear incorporates an earlier stair return as suggested on the 1841 OS map. 

It notes that there is a "substantial single-storey mews to the rear at the south with four bays including carriage arch and replacement corrugated-iron roof, windows and doors blocked up. Former privy and fuel storage shed against north wall."

The house has a "hipped slate roof with ridge tiles, two chimney stacks in the ridge, cast-iron rainwater goods to original structure. Roughcast walls and plainly rendered quoins to front elevation, square-headed window openings with painted rendered surrounds, painted door surround with blocked architrave and plain archivolt with keystone.

"One-over-one timber sash windows with convex horns, four-panelled door of c. 1890 with glazed upper panels, single pane to fanlight. Chimney stacks indicate a tripartite internal division. Two limestone steps to entrance open onto front landscaped garden, house set back from Green Road behind low wrought-iron railings on low rendered plinth course with cut-limestone copings, central entrance gate. Rubble limestone walls enclose the side gardens, substantial plainly treated rendered piers for gate to side garden to north."

The application was lodged in December with a decision due in February.

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