Friday, 21 July 2017

Duke of Kent in County Down


The Duke of Kent has paid a two-day visit to County Down.

His Royal Highness visited Downpatrick Police Station, Downpatrick, County Down, and was received by Her Majesty's Lord-Lieutenant of County Down (Mr. David Lindsay).

HRH later visited Down Cathedral, Downpatrick .

His Royal Highness subsequently visited Finnebrogue House, near Downpatrick.

The following day The Duke of Kent officially named the MV Strangford II ferry.

His Royal Highness later visited Castle Ward Estate, County Down; and the Exploris Aquarium, Portaferry, County Down.

Beltrim Castle

Arms of 1st Earl of Abercorn
THE COLE-HAMILTONS WERE MAJOR LANDOWNERS IN COUNTY TYRONE, WITH 16,811 ACRES


THE RT HON SIR CLAUDE HAMILTON (c1576-1614), of Bodoney, County Tyrone, second son of Claude, 1st Lord Paisley, and brother of James, 1st Earl of Abercorn; Gentleman of the Chamber, and Privy Counsellor.

Sir Claude married the daughter and heir of Sir Robert Hamilton, Knight, and died in 1614, leaving with five younger sons, Alexander, Robert, George, Claude, and James, all of whom dsp, and an elder son and heir,

SIR WILLIAM HAMILTON, Knight, of Manor Elieston, County Tyrone, who married twice.

He was buried in Bodoney parish church, Killeter, Castlederg, County Tyrone.

The eldest son of his second marriage, with Beatrix Campbell,

CLAUD HAMILTON, of Montaloney, County Tyrone, had, by Isabella his wife, five daughters, viz. Beatrix, Mary, Agnes, Margaret, and Rebecca; and two sons,
WILLIAM, his successor;
Claud, of Strabane, ancestor of Hamilton Baronets of Woodbrook.
Mr Hamilton was succeeded by his eldest son,

WILLIAM HAMILTON, of Beltrim, County Tyrone, who left, by Mary his wife, two sons and three daughters.

His son,

CLAUD HAMILTON, of Beltrim, married his cousin, Letitia, daughter of Claud Hamilton, of Strabane, and had issue,
LETITIA, of whom hereafter;
Isabella; Beatrix.
Mr Hamilton was succeeded by his elder daughter,

LETITIA HAMILTON, of Beltrim, who espoused, in 1780, the Hon Arthur Cole MP, afterwards COLE-HAMILTON, of Skea, County Fermanagh.

Mr Cole-Hamilton was the second son of John, 1st Baron Mountflorence, and brother of William, 1st Earl of Enniskillen.

Mr Cole-Hamilton left issue,
CLAUD WILLIAM, his heir;
Letitia; Elizabeth Ann; Isabella.
He was succeeded by his eldest son,

CLAUD WILLIAM COLE-HAMILTON (1781-1822), who married, in 1805, Nichola Sophia, daughter of Richard Chaloner, of Kingsfort, County Meath, by whom he left at his decease, two sons,
ARTHUR WILLOUGHBY, his heir;
Richard Chaloner.
Mr Cole-Hamilton was succeeded by his elder son,

MAJOR ARTHUR WILLOUGHBY COLE-HAMILTON JP DL (1806-91), of Beltrim Castle, who married, in 1831, Emilia Katherine, daughter of Rev Charles Cobbe Beresford, and granddaughter of the Hon John Beresford, second son of Marcus, 1st Earl of Tyrone, and brother of George, 1st Marquess of Waterford, and had issue,
WILLIAM CLAUD, his heir;
Claud Chaloner;
Charles Richard, Commander RN;
Arthur Henry (Rev);
John Isaac (father of Air Vice-Marshal John Cole-Hamilton);
Letitia Grace; Emily Harriet; Selina.
Major Cole-Hamilton was succeeded by his eldest son,

CAPTAIN WILLIAM CLAUD COLE-HAMILTON (1833-82), of Ballitore House, County Kildare, who wedded, in 1858, Caroline Elizabeth Josephine, daughter of Hon Andrew Godfrey Stewart, and granddaughter of Andrew Thomas, 1st Earl Castle Stewart; and dvp in 1882, having had, with other issue,
ARTHUR RICHARD, his heir;
William Andrew Thomas;
Claud George;
Isabel Mary.
Captain Cole-Hamilton was succeeded by his eldest son,

COLONEL ARTHUR RICHARD COLE-HAMILTON JP DL (1859-1915), of Beltrim Castle.
Captain,7th Hussars; fought in the Egyptian Campaign, 1882; Captain, Royal Scots Fusiliers; Sudan Campaign, 1885-86; Lieutenant-Colonel, 6th Service Battalion, East Lancashire Regiment; lived at Caddagh, Wilkinstown, County Meath, and Beltrim, Gortin, Newtownstewart, County Tyrone; Lieutenant-Colonel and Honorary Colonel, 6th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles; 1st World War service, where he was mentioned in despatches; fought in the Gallipoli Campaign.
Colonel Cole-Hamilton married firstly, in 1882, Jeannette, eldest daughter of Samuel Moore, of Moorlands, Lancashire, and had issue, an only child,
WILLIAM MOORE, his heir.
He wedded secondly, in 1884, Florence Alice, daughter of James Duke Hughes, of Brentwood, Surrey.

Colonel Cole-Hamilton died in 1915, aged 56, at The Dardenelles, Turkey, killed in action.

His only son,

MAJOR WILLIAM MOORE COLE-HAMILTON (1883-1948), of Beltrim Castle, Royal Army Service Corps, married, in 1903, Ada Beatrice, daughter of William Peter Huddle, and had an only son,

WILLIAM ARTHUR RICHARD COLE-HAMILTON (1906-36), who married, in 1932, Barbara, daughter of Edward J Deane, and had two daughters,

A memorial screen at Kilwinning Old Parish Church, Ayrshire, was erected from a generous gift made by John Cole-Hamilton and was dedicated on 10th June, 1990.
It was erected in memory of Mr Cole-Hamilton’s father, Colonel Arthur Richard Cole-Hamilton, who died at Gallipoli in 1915; his mother Sarah who died on 18th September, 1942; and his wife Gladys who died on 4th October, 1989. Mr Cole-Hamilton died on 10th November, 1991. The Screen incorporates the Cole-Hamilton shield and the seal of the Abbot of Kilwinning.

BELTRIM CASTLE, near Gortin, County Tyrone, is a five-bay, two-storey, rendered house, built ca 1780-1820.

It is L-shaped, facing west, with a multi-bay, two-storey return.

The formal appearance of the west front to Beltrim Castle owes its existence to early 19th century improvements, which also saw the remains of the 17th century bawn incorporated into a long rear return.

The 19th century house retains most of the original features.

In is said to be not only of local importance, but also of national significance.

Beltrim's associated outbuildings, former bawn, and gardens contribute significantly to the architectural and historic interest of the property.

The only part of the original castle which remains standing is a gable wall which is no part of the present building.

Beltrim is now part of the Blakiston-Houston Estate.

Richard Patrick Blakiston-Houston OBE JP DL was born in 1948; educated at Eton; registered as a Professional Associate, Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, 1972; High Sheriff of County Down, 1989. His wife,

Dr Lucinda Mary Lavinia Blakiston-Houston DL (b 1956), daughter of Lt.-Cdr. Theodore Bernard Peregrine Hubbard and Lady Miriam Fitzalan-Howard; graduated from Leeds University with a Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.); Liverpool University, Master of Science (M.Sc.); Queen's University, Belfast, Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.).

Other residence: The Roddens, Ballywalter, County Down.

Interestingly, the Blakiston-Houston family appear to be related to General Sam Houston, after which Houston, Texas, USA, was named. 
Orangefield Park in east Belfast was the family home of the Houston family in the 18th century. The head of the family, John Holmes Houston, was a partner in the Belfast Banking Company and lived at Orangefield House with his family. 

Orangefield was situated at the end of what is now Houston Park and the estate itself extended to almost 300 acres. John and Eliza's daughter, Mary Isabella, was born in 1793 and later married Richard Bayly Blakiston.

The two families joined names, leaving J Blakiston-Houston in charge of the Orangefield estate from 1857.


In 1934, the Blakiston-Houston family offered Belfast Corporation (now the council) part of the Orangefield estate to develop as a public park. The corporation, although keen to buy the land, felt that the price was too high. 

After lengthy negotiations, they bought part of the site in 1938 for £20,000 (£1.1 million in today's values). Development work was put on hold due to World War II and plans for the park were only drawn up in 1947. 
First published in December, 2009.

Thursday, 20 July 2017

1st Duke of Buckingham

DUKEDOM OF BUCKINGHAM AND CHANDOS
1822-1889

The family of GRENVILLE, of Wotton, Buckinghamshire, was a younger branch of the Grenvilles, or Granvilles, of Devon, whose descent from Rollo, 1st Duke of Normandy, is recited and acknowledged in a warrant from CHARLES II to John Granville, 1st Earl of Bath, authorizing him to use the titles of Earl of Corboile, Thorigny, and Granville, which had been borne by his ancestor, Richard de Grenville, who died after 1142.

RICHARD GRENVILLE (1678-1727), of Wotton, married, in 1710, Hester, eldest daughter of Sir Richard Temple Bt, of Stowe, Buckinghamshire, and sister of Richard, Viscount Cobham.

On the death of her said brother, this lady, pursuant to an especial limitation in his patent of creation, became Viscountess Cobham, to her and her heirs male.

Her ladyship was further advanced, in 1749, to the dignity of Countess Temple of Stowe.

The issue of Lady Temple and Richard Grenville were,
RICHARD, her successor;
GEORGE;
William Wyndham;
James;
Henry.
The Countess died in 1752, and was succeeded by her eldest son,

RICHARD, 2nd Earl, KG (1711-79), who wedded Anne, daughter and co-heir of Thomas Chambers, of Hanworth, Middlesex, and had an only child, ELIZABETH, who died in 1742, aged four.

His lordship was succeeded by his nephew,

GEORGE, 3rd Earl, KG, KP (1753-1813), who obtained the royal sign manual, 1779, authorizing him to take the names of NUGENT and TEMPLE before that of GRENVILLE, and to sign the name of Nugent before before all titles of honour.

His lordship was created Marquess of Buckingham in 1784.

He married, in 1775, the Lady Mary Nugent, daughter of the 1st Earl Nugent, and had issue,
RICHARD, his successor;
George;
Mary.
His lordship was succeeded by his elder son,

RICHARD, 2nd Marquess, KG (1776-1839), who wedded, in 1796, the Lady Anne Brydges, daughter of James, 3rd and last Duke of Chandos.

His lordship was created, in 1822, Marquess of Chandos and DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM and CHANDOS.

His Grace was succeeded by his son,

RICHARD, 2nd Duke, KG, GCH (1797-1861), who wedded, in 1819, the Lady Mary, daughter of the 1st Marquess of Breadalbane, and had issue, with a daughter, a son and successor,

RICHARD, 3rd Duke, GCSI (1823-89), who married firstly, in 1851, Caroline, daughter of Robert Harvey, and had issue,
MARY, 11th Lady Kinloss;
Anne; Caroline Jemima.
His Grace espoused secondly, in 1885, Alice, daughter of Sir Graham Graham-Montgomery Bt, though the marriage was without issue.

The titles expired on the decease of the 3rd and last Duke.

Former seat ~ Stowe House, Buckinghamshire.

Buckingham arms courtesy of European Heraldry.

Gowran Castle

THE VISCOUNTS CLIFDEN WERE THE GREATEST LANDOWNERS IN COUNTY KILKENNY, WITH 35,288 ACRES

CHARLES AGAR, of Yorkshire, married Ellis, daughter of Peter Blancheville, of County Kilkenny, and settling at Gowran, in that county, died there in 1696, and was succeeded by his son,

JAMES AGAR, of Gowran Castle, who wedded firstly, in 1692, Susannah, daughter of John Alexander, but by that lady had no issue to survive youth.

He espoused secondly, Mary, eldest daughter of Sir Henry Wemyss, of Danesfort, County Kilkenny, and had issue,
HENRY, his heir;
James;
ELLIS, cr COUNTESS OF BRANDON;
Mary.
The elder son, 

HENRY AGAR, sat in the parliament which assembled at the accession of GEORGE II, in 1727, for the borough of Gowran.

He married, in 1733, Anne, only daughter of the Rt Rev Welbore Ellis, Lord Bishop of Meath, and sister of Welbore Ellis, 1st Lord Mendip, and had issue,
JAMES, his heir;
Welbore Ellis;
CHARLES, Lord Archbishop of Dublin; cr Earl of Normanton;
Henry, in holy orders;
Diana.
Mr Agar died in 1746, and was succeeded by his eldest son,

THE RT HON JAMES AGAR MP (1735-88), of Gowran Castle, who having many years represented County Kilkenny in parliament, and filled some high official situations in Ireland, was created Baron Clifden, in 1776.

He was advanced to the dignity of a viscountcy, in 1781, as VISCOUNT CLIFDEN, of Gowran, County Kilkenny.

His lordship wedded Lucia, eldest daughter of John Martin, and widow of the Hon Henry Boyle Walsingham, second son of Henry, Earl of Shannon, and had issue,
HENRY WELBORE, his successor;
John Ellis, in holy orders;
Charles Bagenal.
His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,

HENRY WELBORE, 2nd Viscount (1761-1836), who inherited, in 1802, the barony of Mendip, upon the demise of his great-uncle, Welbore, Lord Mendip, and assumed the additional name of ELLIS.

His lordship married, in 1792, the Lady Caroline Spencer, eldest daughter of George, 3rd Duke of Marlborough KG, and had an only son,

GEORGE JAMES WELBORE (1797-1833), who was created, 1831, BARON DOVER.

HENRY,  3rd Viscount Clifden and 3rd Baron Mendip.



GOWRAN CASTLE, County Kilkenny, is an elegantly-appointed, substantial house built for Henry, 2nd Viscount Clifden, to designs attributable to William Robertson (1770-1850), forming an attractive landmark in the centre of Gowran.

Probably incorporating the fabric of an early 18th century house built by James, 1st Viscount Clifden, the present edifice represents the continuation of a long-standing presence on site having origins dating back to at least the late 14th century.

Attributes identifying the architectural design significance of the composition include the balanced configuration of pleasantly-proportioned openings centred on each front on a Classical frontispiece exhibiting expert masonry in locally-sourced Kilkenny limestone.

Although a later range has been lost the essential attributes of the original portion prevail, together with substantial quantities of the historic fabric both to the exterior and to the interior.

Forming a prominent focal point enhancing the townscape of Gowran, the house remains of additional importance in the locality for the connections with the Agar-Ellis and the Moran families.

It was inherited by the daughter of the 3rd Viscount, who married the 3rd Baron Annaly.

Gowran was sold by the 4th Lord Annaly ca 1955.

First published in May, 2011.  Clifden arms courtesy of European Heraldry.

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

The Bar Hall Acquisition

SELECTIVE ACQUISITIONS IN NORTHERN IRELAND


PROPERTY: Bar Hall Lands, near Portaferry, County Down

DATE: 1986-2003

EXTENT: 104.90 acres

DONOR: Mrs McClelland

First published in February, 2015.

62-68 High Street, Belfast

62-68 High Street, Belfast, is a four-storey painted terracotta and red-brick building with dormers and turrets, by the architect William Batt for The National Bank.

Construction began in 1893 and the building was completed in 1897.

Marcus Patton OBE, in his Central Belfast: A Historical Gazetteer, describes it thus:
Terracotta arabesques of centaurs with cornucopias swirl at the foot of the wineglass stem bases of the two-storey canted oriels rising above the main dentilled cornice to become octagonal turrets with fishscale roofs flanking a central dormer, with smaller dormers on the face of the mansard roof behind.

Built in "a kind of Franco-Flemish Renaissance style" of steel and fire-proof concrete, it originally had an interior of some grandeur, and before it was clad over [1980s], the ground floor had a balcony over the central window, with broken pediments over grand side entrances.

...the strength of the concrete was proved when the building survived the 1941 blitz intact, unlike most of its neighbours.
The National Bank operated from the building until absorption by the Bank of Ireland in 1966.

In June, 2013, a project began to redevelop the ground floor for use as a a café bar: The National Grande Café Bar, which opened in early September, 2013.

In the spring of 2015 a cocktail bar and nightclub, called Sixty6, opened on the upper floors of the building.


The National Bank of Ireland was founded in London in 1835, becoming The National Bank Ltd in 1859.

The bank's core Irish business was divested to the Governor and Company of the Bank of Ireland, as National Bank of Ireland, in 1966.
First published in July, 2013. 

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Armagh: II

Inside Armagh (Anglican) Cathedral, the staff pointed out the stained-glass window over the West Door, which contains the armorial bearings of principal donors during the great 1834 restoration of the building, viz.
1st Earl O'Neill KP PC; Sir Thomas Molyneux Bt; Samuel Blacker; Maxwell Close; James Wood; Elias Elsler; Thomas Keers; Roger Hall; R Livingstone; and Sir William Verner Bt MP.
Could Lord O'Neill's act of beneficence have been a form of atonement?

In 1566, Shane O'Neill ‘utterly destroyed the Cathedral by fire, lest the English should again lodge in it’.

In 1641 it again became a target for the O'Neills, when Sir Phelim O'Neill burned it.

I was made aware of an anomaly in the North-west Window, viz. an anatomical error in the glass, whereby the right leg of the boy in the central light terminates in a left foot.

From the Cathedral, I walked the very short distance ~ about one minute ~ to a little museum, Number 5 Vicars' Hill.
Vicars' Hill is a terrace of houses formerly occupied by cathedral choir-men and clergy widows. Numbers 1-4 were built by Archbishop Boulter in 1724; the rest were constructed by Archbishop Robinson.

5 Vicars’ Hill was built in 1772 as the Diocesan Registry to hold records for the Church of Ireland and Armagh diocese, its octagonal rooms contained many public as well as Church records.

While the diocesan records are no longer retained in the building, some examples are on display, with ancient coins, gems, significant prints, early Christian artefacts and other collections and curiosities from Armagh Public Library.

The deceptively large building, which resembles a modest dwelling from the outside, has a fascinating interior and retains many of its original features.
I enjoyed a lengthy chat with the curator, reminiscing about such Primates as Archbishop Simms, the last prelate to reside at Armagh Palace.

Rather conveniently, when the museum closed at 1pm, I walked next door to number 4, a charming little restaurant and tearoom called One Eighty on the Hill.

On perusal of the menu, I opted for the smoked salmon Caesar salad and a pot of tea.

The young staff here were lovely ~ most attentive and courteous.

Whilst waiting, the noble eye found itself gazing upwards, to the quirky crockery light fitting.


My salad was very good.

The tea arrived in an enormous pot, which must have held about two pints.

I actually had trouble lifting it with one hand, having to support the weight by placing a few fingers on the spout!

Having spent a delightful forty minutes at One Eighty on the Hill, I ventured out into the sunshine and ambled down the hill, past Church House and the Library.

Armagh Public Library, the oldest library in Northern Ireland, was founded in 1771 by Primate Robinson as part of his plans to establish a university and to improve Armagh City.

The 1773 ‘Act for settling and preserving the Publick Library in Armagh for ever’ established the Library and its name.

First published in May, 2013.

1st Duke of Leeds

DUKEDOM OF LEEDS
1694-1964

This noble family, like many others in the peerage, traces its origin to the city of London, where it first became of importance through

SIR EDWARD OSBORNE, Knight (c1530-91), who filled the office of Lord Mayor in 1582.

This gentleman discovering an early bias towards commercial pursuits, was put apprentice to Sir William Hewett, of the Clothworkers' Company, one of the most considerable merchants in London; and while serving his apprenticeship, Sir William's only child Anna, having accidentally fallen from the window of his house on London Bridge, into the Thames, Mr Osborne leaped into the river and brought her out in safety, when but little hope remained of her rescue.

This lady was afterwards his wife, and by her he had issue,
HEWETT, his heir;
Edward;
Anne; Alice; Jane.
Sir Edward married secondly, Margaret, who outlived him.

He was MP for the City of London, 1585.

Sir Edward was succeeded by his eldest son,

SIR HEWETT OSBORNE, who received the honour of knighthood from the Earl of Essex, in Ireland, for his services there.

He wedded Joice, daughter of Thomas Fleetwood, of The Vache, Buckinghamshire, Master of the Mint, and had, with a daughter, Alice, an only son, his successor in 1614,

SIR EDWARD OSBORNE, Knight (1596-1647), of Kiveton, Yorkshire, who was created a baronet, 1620.

In 1629, when Thomas, Viscount Wentworth (afterwards Earl of Strafford), was made Lord President of the North, Sir Edward Osborne was appointed Vice-President of the Council to CHARLES I for the North of England; and upon the breaking out of the rebellion, 1641, was Lieutenant-General of the forces raised in His Majesty's defence in that part of the country.

He wedded firstly, Margaret, eldest daughter of Thomas, Viscount Fauconberg, and had a son, Edward, who was killed in youth by the fall of some chimneys at his father's residence.

Sir Edward espoused secondly, Anne, daughter of Thomas Walmesley, of Lancashire, and by this lady he had an only son, his successor,

SIR THOMAS OSBORNE, 2nd Baronet (1632-1712), who became Lord High Treasurer of England and was elevated to the peerage, 1673, as Viscount Osborne and Earl of Danby.

His lordship was advanced to the dignity of a marquessate, in 1689, as Marquess of Carmarthen; and further advanced, in 1694, to a dukedom, as DUKE OF LEEDS.

He was installed a Knight of the Garter, and enrolled amongst the peers of Scotland, 1675, by the title of Viscount Osborne, of Dunblane.

His Grace married Bridget, daughter of Montagu Bertie, 2nd Earl of Lindsey, LORD GREAT CHAMBERLAIN OF ENGLAND, and was succeeded at his demise, in 1712, by his only surviving son,

PEREGRINE, 2nd Duke (1659-1729), who wedded Bridget, only daughter and heir of Sir Thomas Hyde Bt, by whom he had two sons and two daughters.

His Grace having adopted the naval profession, attained the rank of Vice-Admiral of the Red, 1705, and conveyed the Duke of Marlborough and his army, with six men-of-war, to Holland in the same year.

He was succeeded by his second and only surviving son,

PEREGRINE HYDE, 3rd Duke (1691-1731), who espoused firstly, Elizabeth, daughter of Robert, Earl of Oxford, by whom he had an only son, THOMAS, his successor; and secondly, Anne, daughter of Charles, Duke of Somerset, by whom he had no surviving issue.

His Grace married thirdly, in 1725, Juliana, daughter and co-heir of Roger Hele, of Holwell, Devon.

The 3rd Duke was succeeded by his son,

THOMAS, 4th Duke, KG (1713-89), who wedded, in 1740, Mary, second daughter and eventually sole heir of Francis, Earl of Godolphin, and was succeeded by his only surviving son,

FRANCIS GODOLPHIN, 5th Duke (1751-99), who wedded, in 1773, Amelia, only daughter and heir of Robert D'Arcy, Earl of Holderness, and Baroness Conyers, at the demise of her father, by which marriage he had issue,
GEORGE WILLIAM FREDERICK, his successor;
Francis Godolphin, created 1st BARON GODOLPHIN;
Mary Henrietta Juliana.
This marriage being dissolved by act of Parliament in 1779, His Grace espoused secondly, in 1788, Catherine, daughter of Thomas Anguish, Accountant-General of the Court of Chancery, and had issue,
Sidney Godolphin;
Catherime Anne Sarah.
His Grace was succeeded by his eldest son,

GEORGE WILLIAM FREDERICK, 6th Duke, KG (1775-1838), who inherited the barony of Conyers upon the decease of his mother Amelia, Baroness Conyers in her own right, in 1784.

His Grace espoused, in 1797, Charlotte, daughter of George, 1st Marquess Townshend, and had issue,
FRANCIS GODOLPHIN D'ARCY, his successor;
Conyers George Thomas William;
Charlotte Mary Anne Georgiana.
The 6th Duke was Lord-Lieutenant of the North Riding of Yorkshire, Governor of the Scilly Isles, Constable of Middleton Castle, and Ranger of Richmond Forest.

He was appointed Master of the Horse, 1827, sworn of the Privy Council, and appointed a Knight of the Garter on the same day.

At the coronation of WILLIAM IV, the Duke of Leeds was one of the four Knights of the Garter who held over the King's head the pall of gold at the ceremony of anointing.

His Grace was succeeded by his only surviving son,

FRANCIS GODOLPHIN D'ARCY, 7th Duke, who married, in 1828, Louisa Catharine, third daughter and co-heir of Richard Caton, of Maryland, USA, though the marriage was without issue, and the titles devolved upon His Grace's cousin,

GEORGE GODOLPHIN, 2nd Baron Godolphin, 8th Duke (1802-72), who wedded, in 1824, Harriet Emma Arundel, natural daughter of Granville, 1st Earl Granville,
Francis George Godolphin D'Arcy D'Arcy-Osborne, 7th Duke (1798–1859);
George Godolphin Osborne, 8th Duke (1802–72);
George Godolphin Osborne, 9th Duke (1828–95);
George Godolphin Osborne, 10th Duke (1862–1927);
John Francis Godolphin Osborne, 11th Duke (1901–1963);
Francis D'Arcy Godolphin Osborne, 12th Duke (1884–1964), grandson of Lord Godolphin's third son, died without issue, at which point all of his titles became extinct.
Former seats ~ Hornby Castle, Yorkshire; Godolphin, Cornwall.

Leeds arms courtesy of European Heraldry.

Monday, 17 July 2017

Palmerstown House

THE EARLS OF MAYO OWNED 4,915 ACRES OF LAND IN COUNTY KILDARE

This is a branch of the noble and illustrious house of CLANRICARDE, said to derive from the old Bourkes, Viscounts Mayo, whose representation vested in AYLMER BOURKE LAMBERT, of Boyton, Wiltshire, vice-president of the Linnean society.

JOHN BOURKE (third son of David Bourke, of Moneycrower, County Mayo) was a captain of horse under the Marquess of Ormonde during the troubles in Ireland, in 1641; at the termination of which he took up his abode at Kill, County Kildare, and marrying Catherine, daughter of Meyler Fay, and niece of Sir Paul Davys, had (with three daughters),
Miles, dsp;
Walter, dsp;
Theobald, dsp;
RICKARD, of whom presently
The youngest son,

RICKARD BOURKE, married Catherine, daughter of Charles Minchin, of Ballinakill, County Tipperary, and was father of

THE RT HON JOHN BOURKE (c1705-90), MP for Naas, who wedded, in 1725, Mary, third daughter and co-heir of the Rt Hon Joseph Deane, Chief Baron of the Irish Exchequer, and had issue,
JOHN, his heir;
JOSEPH DEANE (Most Rev), Lord Archbishop of Tuam, 3rd Earl;
Richard;
Thomas;
Catherine; Elizabeth; Margaret; Eleanor.
Mr Bourke having been sworn previously of the Irish privy council, was elevated to the peerage, in 1776, as Baron Naas; and advanced to a viscountcy, 1781, as Viscount Mayo.

His lordship was further advanced to the dignity of an earldom, in 1785, as EARL OF MAYO.

The 1st Earl was succeeded by his eldest son,

JOHN, 2nd Earl (1729-92), who espoused, in 1764, the Lady Mary Leeson, daughter of Joseph, Earl of Milltown, but died without issue, when the honours devolved upon his brother,


JOSEPH DEANE (Most Rev), Lord Archbishop of Tuam, as 3rd Earl (c1740-94), who married, in 1760, Elizabeth, only daughter of Sir Richard Meade Bt, and sister of John, 1st Earl of Clanwilliam, by whom he had issue,
JOHN, 4th Earl;
Richard (Rt Rev), Lord Bishop of Waterford;
Joseph (Very Rev), Dean of Ossory;
George Theobald (Rev);
and eight daughters.
His lordship was succeeded by his eldest son,
John, 4th Earl (1766–1849);
Robert, 5th Earl (1797–1867);
Richard Southwell, 6th Earl (1822-72);
Dermot Robert Wyndham, 7th Earl (1851–1927);
Walter Longley, 8th Earl (1859–1939);
Ulick Henry, 9th Earl (1890–1962);
Terence Patrick, 10th Earl (1929–2006);
Charles Diarmuidh John, 11th Earl (b 1953).
The heir apparent is the present holder's eldest son, Richard Thomas Bourke, styled Lord Naas (b 1985).


PALMERSTOWN HOUSE, near Johnstown, County Kildare, is a mansion-house rebuilt in late-Victorian "Queen Anne" style.

6th Earl of Mayo KP GCSI PC
The mansion was built by public subscription as a tribute to the memory of the 6th Earl of Mayo, Chief Secretary for Ireland and later Viceroy of India.
The 6th Earl was assassinated by an escaped convict in the Andaman Islands in 1872.
One front has a recessed centre and three-bay projections, joined by a colonnade of coupled columns. Another front has a pediment elevated on a three-bay attic, between two three-sided bows.

The house has a Mansard roof with pedimented dormers.


The mansion was burnt in 1923, though afterwards rebuilt with a flat roof and balustraded parapet.

Palmerstown has had a succession of owners, including Mrs B Lawlor, who began her career as cook to the 7th Earl and Countess.

Palmerstown House now functions as a de luxe golf golf resort and functions including christenings, communions, confirmations, family celebrations, retirement parties, anniversaries, corporate events, team-building exercises etc.

Mayo arms courtesy of European Heraldry.

The Duchess of Cornwall

Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall GCVO PC is 70 today.

HRH's full style and titles are as follows:
Her Royal Highness The Princess Charles Philip Arthur George, Princess of Wales and Countess of Chester, Duchess of Cornwall, Duchess of Rothesay, Countess of Carrick, Baroness of Renfrew, Lady of the Isles, Princess of Scotland.

In 2007, HRH was appointed to The Royal Family Order of Queen Elizabeth II.

In 2012, Her Royal Highness was appointed Dame Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order (GCVO), as illustrated on HRH's armorial bearings.

In 2016, HRH was appointed a Privy Counsellor.

Sunday, 16 July 2017

Armagh: I


In May, 2013, I spent a memorable day in the city of Armagh, County Armagh.

This was my first visit to the ecclesiastical capital for a number of years.

Incidentally, I urge readers to pay this beautiful, compact primatial city a visit.

It is utterly fascinating.

I motored in a south-westerly direction and, given that it was such a fine day, kept the hood down the entire way.

I parked at The Mall, where my first port-of-call was the County Museum, a fairly modest establishment, though of considerable interest.

On the first floor many items were on display, including various uniforms and costumes.

One example (top) was the scarlet tunic and breeches ~ court dress ~ as worn by the 5th Earl of Caledon when he was a page-boy to EDWARD VII at His Majesty's coronation.


THENCE I admired the prospect from The Mall, which I crossed, ambling along several streets before I reached the old market-place, en route to Armagh (Anglican) Cathedral, on the hill.

This is a relatively small cathedral, certainly in comparison with its counterparts in England; though it is a veritable treasure-trove of ancient relics, statuary and stained-glass inside.

There are memorial plaques to many of the old county families, including the 1st Lord Armaghdale, Sir Thomas Molyneux Bt (below), of Castle Dillon, and the Blackers of Carrickblacker.


I hadn't been aware of the Cathedral Gardens, which I walked through.


The See House (above) replaced a residence of ca 1973.

It was built in 2011 as the official residence of the anglican Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland.

The last archbishop to live at Armagh Palace (now council offices) was the Most Rev Dr George Otto Simms.

First published in May, 2013.

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Unfortunate Lady Jane Grey


This exquisite painting of 1833 is entitled The Execution Of Lady Jane Grey.

This poignant oil painting by Paul Delaroche is on display at the National Gallery in London.

The detail; the grief on the face of the lady-in-waiting; the stance of the executioner with his axe; and their expressions all bring tears to my eyes as as study this, one of my favourite paintings.

I shall view it the next time I am in the Metropolis - and bring a clean handkerchief.

Grand Opera House Ceiling


Every time I visit the Grand Opera House in Belfast I always admire the ceiling.

It originally had six painted ceiling panels, the blue sky with stars above the oriental balcony with its small potted palms.


When the opera house was being restored in the 1980s, an artist was sought who could recreate the scene in a sympathetic manner.

Cherith McKinstry was selected.

It was felt that her re-interpretation complemented the four surviving painted roundels, which were re-mounted on fibreglass saucer domes, and the cartouche of female musicians inside the segmental arch over the proscenium opening.

The roundels and cartouche were exquisitely restored and cleaned by Alexander Dunluce, now the Earl of Antrim.


THE GRAND OPERA HOUSE was used as a cinema for many years then closed after bomb damage.

It reopened as a theatre in 1980, after undergoing a successful scheme of renovation and restoration.
The magnificent auditorium is probably the best surviving example in the UK of the Oriental Style applied to theatre architecture - largely Indian in character with intricate detail on the sinuously curved fronts of the two balconies and an elaborate composition of superimposed boxes surmounted by turban-domed canopies.
The ceiling, which is divided into several richly-framed painted panels, is supported on arches above the gallery slips, with large elephant heads at springing level.
Proscenium, 39' 8"; stage depth, 45'; grid increased to 60' from 52'; a new, enlarged orchestra pit, the sharp single radius curve of the orchestra rail providing the only slightly jarring note in this superb auditorium. The exterior, of brick and cast stone, is in a free mixture of Baroque, Flemish and Oriental styles - typical of Matcham’s earlier work.
Frank Matcham made good use of the corner site by building up the composition of his design in stages, linked by strapwork scrolls, to the triangular-pedimented central gable which is flanked by domed minarets.


The relatively recent projecting glass extension to the former first floor bar (the Crush Bar) is said to be in the spirit of Matcham’s architecture.

It's reminiscent of an elevated conservatory or glass-house.

In 1982, it was made complete by the addition of the visually important column supports.

In 1991 and 1993, the theatre was damaged by terrorist bombs.

This necessitated considerable rebuilding of the Glengall Street dressing-room block and stage door.

Fortunately the auditorium suffered only superficial damage. 

Paul Coleman has provided several images of the ceiling.  First published in May, 2010.

Friday, 14 July 2017

The Clark Baronets

THE CLARK BARONETCY, OF DUNLAMBERT, BELFAST, WAS CREATED IN 1917 FOR THE SHIPBUILDER AND POLITICIAN, GEORGE SMITH CLARK

This family originally came from Dykebar in Renfrewshire.

JAMES CLARK (1747-1829), of Paisley, Renfrewshire, son of William Clark and Agnes Bryson, married Margaret, daughter of Andrew Campbell, in 1768.

His occupation was thread manufacturer.
This James started out in business as a heddle harness, heddle twine and lash twine manufacturer. He started making cotton thread in 1813 and, together with his son James (1782-1865), built a mill at Seedhill, Paisley, Renfrewshire.

This mill was acquired in 1819 by his sons James and John, who formed J & J Clark, thread manufacturers, Paisley, Renfrewshire. Their father continued to run a separate business at Cotton Street and Thread Street, Paisley and died in 1829.
His younger son, 

JAMES CLARK (1782-1865), of Chapel House, Paisley (below), married Agnes, daughter of James McFarlane, in 1830.

The eldest son,

JAMES CLARK (1831-1910), of Chapel House, married firstly, in 1858, Jane, daughter of George Smith; and secondly, in 1871, Katherine, daughter of Major-General George King.

Mr Clark was Provost of Paisley, 1882-85.

His second son,

GEORGE SMITH CLARK DL (1861-1935), wedded, in 1881, Frances Elizabeth, daughter of Henry Matier.

He was educated at Merchiston Castle School, Edinburgh, and apprenticed to Harland & Wolff, Belfast.

In 1877, he opened his own shipyard on the River Lagan in association with Mr Frank Workman.

His uncle, George Smith, provided capital for this initial venture.

In 1891, the firm became Workman, Clark & Co. Ltd.

Charles Allan (a cousin of Clark's and a member of the Allan Line family) also joined the firm.

By 1902, the shipyard comprised fifty acres in extent.

Mr Clark was created a baronet in 1917.


DUNLAMBERT HOUSE, a large Victorian villa in north Belfast, was built for Sir George's father-in-law, Henry Matier. The architect was James Hamilton, of Glasgow.

The house and lodge were swept away for Dunlambert Secondary School.

The school was established in 1958, so the house must have been demolished ca 1956.

Dunlambert House was located off Fortwilliam Park  (remains of the grand entrances built by George Langry, who owned the estate in the early 1800s, remain).


A picture from the Lawrence Collection provides an indication of the dwellings within the park, including the Clarks' gate lodge and drive (above).

More information about the career of the 1st Baronet is available here.

Sir George Ernest Clark DL (1882-1950), 2nd Baronet,
Graduated from Cambridge University with a MA; Member, Institute of Naval Architects; Commissioner of Irish Lights; Deputy Chairman, Great Northern Railway Company; Honorary Colonel, 3rd Searchlight Regiment, Royal Artillery (TA), 1939-46; High Sheriff of County Antrim, 1940; High Sheriff of County Down, 1941.
Sir George Anthony Clark DL (1914-91), 3rd Baronet,
Educated at Canford; MP for Belfast Dock, 1938-45; captain in the Black Watch; fought in the 2nd World War; Senator in the Stormont Parliament, 1951-69; Imperial Grand President of the Imperial Grand Orange Council of the World, 1958-61; High Sheriff of County Antrim, 1954. 
Sir George and Lady Clark lived at Tullygarvan House, near Ballygowan, County Down.

Sir Colin Douglas Clark MC (1918-95), 4th Baronet, who succeeded to the baronetcy as the 3rd Baronet's younger brother,
Educated at Eton; major, the Royal Engineers; fought in 2nd World War, where he was mentioned in despatches; graduated from Trinity College, Cambridge in 1939 with a MA; awarded a Military Cross (MC); managing director of G Heyn and Sons Ltd, Belfast; Director of Cladox Ltd, The Ulster Steamship Company Ltd, The North Continental Shipping Company Ltd, and the Mountain Steamship Company Ltd.
Sir Jonathan George Clark (b 1947), 5th and present Baronet, was educated at Eton; captain in the Royal Green Jackets, 1966; retired from the Army in 1978; managing director of Paragon Homes Ltd in 1992.

In 2003 he lived in Cheshire.

First published in July, 2010.

Low Rock Castle


LOW ROCK CASTLE, Portstewart, County Londonderry, was so called in order to distinguish it from its larger neighbour further along the coast, Rock Castle (a school since 1917, known locally as O'Hara's Castle).

Low Rock Castle was a two-storey, late-Georgian seaside villa of ca 1820, with two bows like round towers at either end of its front.

The house was originally battlemented, hence its "castle" nomenclature.


The bows contained circular rooms.

Low Rock Castle was famous for having been the birth-place, in 1835, of Field-Marshal Sir George White VC, the defender of Ladysmith.

It was built by Henry O'Hara who later constructed the dwelling known as "O'Hara's Castle" on a promontory further to the north.

Low Rock Castle is referred to in 1835 as a bathing residence that was usually let during the summer.

The house was rented to James Robert White, of White Hall, County Antrim, during the summer of 1835.

The building was vacant in 1856 and was the property of Alexander Shuldham.

The house was let out for some years and, in 1885, was sold to Thomas Mackey, a wine merchant of Coleraine, at which time it was said to comprise twenty-three rooms, including three reception rooms, nine bedrooms, kitchen, pantries and two WCs.

Extensive outbuildings comprised a large coach-house, stable, byre, and a house for the coachman, the whole "romantically situated on an acre of ground".

In 1908, it was recorded that the house was let for the summer season of three months a year and was otherwise vacant.

The house passed to James Leslie ca 1920; and then to the Wilson family in the 1930s.

It was run as a boarding-house in the summer, though was closed during the winter.

Notes of this period show the house with bays and porch, a rear return with dining room; pantry and scullery; and a stable block to the south which had been converted into rooms for boarders and staff.

In 1945, the property was purchased for £3,000 by Robina Young, when the interior was completely modernised, part of the building accommodating an overflow of visitors from the Strand Hotel.

Low Rock Castle was demolished overnight in 2001, without permission, during the construction of a block of apartments that now occupy the site:
"Planners were under fire today after ruling out legal action over the flattening of a protected historic building. The listed 19th century [Low] Rock Castle in Portstewart was pulled down in the summer of 2001 to make way for an apartment complex.

It has taken the DoE's Planning Service almost four years to decide against prosecution. The Department had previously referred to the demolition as an "offence" and stressed that the "necessary legal procedures" were under way.

Its decision not to go to court has been revealed in a letter to Coleraine Council. The DoE said it had been firmly advised by its lawyers that there was "no reasonable prospect" of a conviction.

Works to Rock Castle had been "urgently necessary" on health and safety grounds and the developer had carried out the "minimum measures necessary", the letter stated.

The Department also said that Planning Service chiefs had decided after "careful consideration" that pursuing the case "would not be in the overall public interest". The DoE took a much tougher stance in the immediate wake of the removal of the historic building. 

In a letter to the Ulster Architectural Heritage Society in October 2001, the office of the then Environment Minister, Sam Foster, stated: "The Planning Service has initiated the necessary legal procedures with a view to pursuing prosecution." 

The Minister's office also stated that the demolition was "at variance" with a Planning Service consent, which required the "retention of the original front section of Rock Castle".

Rita Harkin from the Ulster Architectural Heritage Society said at the time:
"This fine listed building was demolished without consent, to the detriment and dismay of the community. We shared their clear expectation that a prosecution would follow. To maintain that the Department's inaction is in the public interest is risible. Will it not simply prompt others to demolish and reason later, cheating towns and villages of cherished historic buildings?"


I photographed Low Rock Castle's successor during a visit to Portstewart in July, 2013.

The picture was taken from the shore.


At the entrance there remains a tiny fisherman's cottage of ca 1600.

First published in July, 2013.

Thursday, 13 July 2017

New Armagh DLs

APPOINTMENT OF DEPUTY LIEUTENANTS

The Rt Hon the Earl of Caledon, KCVO, Lord-Lieutenant of County Armagh, has been pleased to appoint,
Mr John BRIGGS, Richhill, County Armagh;
Dr Eileen S McALINDEN, Portadown, County Armagh;
Mr David REANEY, Armagh, County Armagh;
Dr Gareth CONWAY, Portadown, County Armagh;
To be Deputy Lieutenants of the said County, dated the 7th July, 2017.

Signed,

THE EARL OF CALEDON
Lord-Lieutenant

Theatre Royal, Belfast

I AM GRATEFUL TO MATTHEW LLOYD AND MARCUS PATTON OBE FOR THE USE OF SELECTED MATERIAL IN THE MUSIC HALL AND THEATRE HISTORY WEBSITE AND CENTRAL BELFAST: A HISTORICAL GAZETTEER

THE THEATRE ROYAL, at the corner of Arthur Street and Castle Lane, Belfast, had three incarnations.

It is known to have been running as early as 1793, when the first theatre on the site was built for Michael Atkins.

This first theatre was eventually rebuilt, with construction starting at the close of the season in March, 1870.

It was said to be "a mere red brick enclosure", with various unsavoury smells emanating from its interior.

During construction of the original theatre, a roadway was discovered that was thought to have been a former entrance to old Belfast Castle.

The second theatre was opened in 1871, and played host to many well known actors of the time.

The General Manager remained J F Warden, who also operated the Grand Opera House, which opened in 1895.

The second theatre suffered a fire in June, 1881.

Despite the fire a new theatre, the third on the site, was soon under construction and was completed just six months later, for its opening in December, 1881.

The designer of the third Theatre Royal in Belfast was the well known and respected theatre architect, C J Phipps.

Construction was carried out by H & J Martin, who would later go on to construct the Grand Opera House in 1895.

The Era newspaper printed a report on the Theatre Royal in their 1881 edition saying:
...The new theatre, although built within the same space as the late structure, is different in almost every particular ... the elevation facing Arthur-square still retains the five entrance doorways, but their designations have been changed.

The dress circle and the upper circle both enter by the three centre doorways into a large vestibule; thence the audience to the former turn to the left hand, and the latter to the right hand, up the respective staircases.

There will be no confusion or mingling of the audience to these two parts of the house, as the vestibule will be divided by a low barrier, and when the performance is over the additional doorway to the extreme right of the façade will serve as the exit from the upper circle staircase exclusively;

the corresponding doorway on the left, next to Mr Forrester's premises, being the entrance to the pit, which is entered up a few steps from the street. The gallery is entered in Castle-lane - first doorway from the angle of the façade.

Farther along Castle-lane is another wide doorway which opens directly into the refreshment saloon, underneath the pit, and will be opened at every performance as an additional exit for the pit. The stage entrance is in the old position in Castle-lane.

Along the whole of the façade in Arthur-square a covered veranda or porch has been erected of iron and glass; so that the audience waiting for the opening of the doors will be protected when the weather is wet, and those coming in carriages will not have to cross a damp pavement previous to entering the theatre.

The vestibule before referred to is level with the street, and in the wall opposite the entrances are the offices for booking seats and pay places for the dress and upper circles. A corridor in the centre leads to the acting manager's and Mr Warden's offices, and to lavatories for gentlemen.

The floors of this vestibule and the corridor are laid with marble mosaic, from Mr Burke's manufactory, at Venice. Ascending the staircase, to the left of the vestibule are the dress circle and balcony stalls, with a cloak-room on the top of the landing. The balcony stalls have six rows of seats all fitted with the architect's patent arm-chairs, with lifting seats.

This part of the theatre is arranged somewhat after the model of the Gaiety, at Dublin (also designed by Mr Phipps), with small private boxes on either side, behind the second row of seats.

The back of the circle is enclosed from the corridor by a series of elliptical arches, filled with plate-glass sashes, which can be either opened or kept closed, thereby keeping the circle warm and snug, when not entirely fall, and affording means for those standing in the corridor on a full night to both bear and see the performance.

Behind the corridor is a refreshment saloon, adjoining the cloak-room. There are two private boxes in the proscenium, also, on this level, and on the pit tier, the upper circle and the gallery tier. The front of the upper circle tier recedes about two rows of seats behind the dress circle, the front rows of which form a balcony.

The gallery tier also recedes again from the upper circle. The mode of construction is good for sound, and also prevents the well-like appearance which small theatres present when all the fronts of the various tiers are on one perpendicular plane.

The upper-circle has six rows of seats, and a spacious corridor behind for standing - and the same arrangement of refreshment saloon and cloak-room as on the tier below. The gallery, or top tier, has ten rows of seats.

It has two means of access from the two staircases above those of the dress and upper-circle, with a communicating corridor arranged between the two, so that each side of the gallery has a good entrance and exit. All the entrance staircases are made of cement concrete, and are supported at either end by brick or concrete walls, with handrails.

The stage is also separated from the auditory by a solid brick wall, carried by an arch over the proscenium, and entirely through the roof, thereby rendering the stage and audience portions of the house entirely distinct from each other; in fact, forming two separate buildings, the only communication between them being two iron doors.

Water is laid on from the high-pressure mains to several parts of the theatre, both before and behind the curtain. The gas meter and supplies are entirely distinct for the stage and auditory, so that the failure of one supply will not affect the other.

In fact, every possible means have been taken, that experience could devise, to insure both the safety and comfort of the audience.

The auditory is thus arranged:— The stage opening, which is 28ft. wide, by 31ft. high, is surrounded by a frame, richly moulded and gilded; above this an arch is formed, in the tympanum of which is painted an allegorical subject, by Ballard, representing "Apollo end the Muses."

On either side of the proscenium are private boxes, one on each of the four levels of the auditory, enclosed between Corinthian columns, richly ornamented and fluted. The three tiers rise one above the other, and the whole is surmounted by a circular ceiling, enclosed in a circular moulded cornice - very richly modelled and gilded.

The flat part of the ceiling is painted in Italian Renaissance ornament, in colours, on a pale creamy white ground. Each of the fronts of the several tiers are richly modelled in ornament of the Renaissance period, and are painted and gilded - the general tone of the ornamentation being cream white and gold.

The effect of this is enhanced by the rich colour of the wall-paper, of a warm Venetian red tone - while the hangings to the private boxes are of silk tapestry, a deep turquoise blue colour, embroidered with sprigs of flowers in colour. The whole scheme of colour has been very carefully arranged by the architect, and the paper and curtains have been specially manufactured for this theatre.

Although the holding capacity of the theatre has been only enlarged by a trifling number, yet it will look much larger and more open than the late theatre, and will be decidedly more ornamental and convenient. A very charming act-drop, painted by Mr Harford, of the St. James's and Haymarket Theatres, London, represents a classical landscape, with satin draperies enclosing it.

The whole of the new and beautiful scenery has been executed by Mr Swift, Mr Beilair, and assistants. The stage occupies its old position, and the roof over it is carried up sufficiently high to admit of the large drop scenes being taken up in one piece, without any rolling or doubling.

At the back of the stage, high up even above the second tier of flies, is the painting gallery, with two frames.

The theatre is illuminated with a powerful sunlight, with a ventilating shaft round it. Subsidiary lights are also placed at the backs of the several tiers, all under the control of the gas man at the prompter's box, and capable of being turned down simultaneously when the exigencies of the scene requires a subdued light.

The various contractors who have been engaged upon the works are as follow:— Messrs H. and J. Martin, of Belfast, for the whole of the builders' work, including stage (under the direction of Mr Owen); Messrs George Jackson and Sons, of London, for the patent fibrous plaster work of box fronts, proscenium, and ceiling; Messrs Strode and Co., for the sunlight and the special gas work for stage;

Messrs Riddel of Belfast, for the general gas-fitting; Messrs Dale have erected the limelight apparatus; Mr E. Bell has executed the whole of the decorative painting and gilding; Messrs George Smith and Co., of Glasgow, have erected the iron and glass veranda porch; Burke and Co., of London, Paris, and Venice, have laid the marble mosaic to vestibule;

Wadmen, of Bath, has manufactured the patent chairs for the dress circle; Messrs N A Campbell, of Belfast, have executed the curtains and upholstery generally in and about the theatre. Mr William Browne has been clerk of works.
Arthur Lloyd is known to have performed at the theatre in 1890, and his father in law, the Drury Lane Tragedian, T C King, appeared in the earlier one in 1858; and again in 1863, in Othello.

The third incarnation of the Theatre Royal ran as a live Theatre for just 34 years before it was demolished and replaced with a new cinema building.

The Building News carried a short piece on its demise in their August 1915 edition, saying:-
Operations have been commenced in connection with the demolition of the Theatre Royal, the site of which is to be utilised for the erection of a picture house on a large scale.

Messrs. Warden, Ltd., the owners of the Theatre Royal, intend to erect a building which will bear comparison with any other structure of the kind in the United Kingdom. The plans have been prepared by Mr Crewe, who designed the Royal Hippodrome, and the contract has been let to Messrs. H. and J. Martin, Ltd., of Belfast.

The whole of the ground floor will be devoted to stalls, with upholstered chairs, and there will be a large and well equipped circle. Accommodation will be provided for an audience of about 1,500.

It is expected that the building will be ready about Christmas.
Construction continued into the following year and the Building News carried another short article in their 1916 edition saying:-
A picture house is being built in Arthur Square, Belfast, from plans by Mr Bertie Crewe, of London. The contractors are Messrs H & J Martin, Ltd, of Ormeau Road, Belfast.
The new building opened as the Royal Cinema in the spring of 1916.

Designed by Bertie Crewe, the building is said to have resembled his Prince's Theatre in London, built some 5 years earlier, and was somewhat smaller than originally advertised, with 900 seats in its stalls and circle levels, and a café for refreshments.

The Royal Cinema continued for many years but is said to have become very run down in its later years and was eventually demolished and replaced with shops in 1961.

Today the site is occupied by a Starbuck's café.

First published in July, 2013.